Brandi Lyons demonstrates how she helps a head shy horse overcome fear.
“If I get a horse in training that’s a bit head shy, then I’m going to work on getting him comfortable with me touching him before I go on to bridling and what-not,” Brandi revealed.
The first goal is to bring the horse to a place where the horse is comfortable being petted on the head or neck.
“That’s kind of a little bit easier on them,” Brandi explained. “Pet them; play with them. Always stop and give them a break.”
With a head shy horse, make sure you step back and move the horse’s feet and are not just continuously rubbing on the horse.
“Moving a horse’s feet gets the horse to release some of that tension the horse is holding,” Brandi imparted.
Go back and forth between rubbing the horse and moving its feet. Once the horse is calm with this process, take your hand and move it over the ears as fast as you can, and then rub the head and neck. Repeat these steps 100 times until the horse does not move its head.
“He’ll start to not toss his head as you go fast,” Brandi said. “So, then once you’re going fast, and he stops moving his head, then start slowing it down. If you slow it down too much that he throws his head while you’re on top, then speed it back up.”
Speed up the process and then start slowing it down until stopping your hand on the ear.
“Rub, stop on the ear and then rub,” Brandi explained. “Again, be moving their feet in between times.”
Make sure to repeat this process on both ears.
“When you start going the other way, you gotta go fast again,” Brandi said. “Rub, go on; repeat. You can go back and forth, and again, that horse is gonna get to where he doesn’t care about this because tossing his head wasn’t fun, and you left anyways.”
Then slow down the entire process until, no matter what you do, the horse doesn’t throw his head. Then start rubbing on the inside, making sure to go fast at first, and then get out of there.
“Rub fast, get out of there and move their feet,” Brandi emphasized.
Slow down with your rub again, and after a while, the horse will be completely calm while his head and neck are touched.
“If you want to get where you are clipping them and stuff, start using, like a rag, and then start brushing their ears, and then go to clippers,” Brandi said.
Learn more about Brandi Lyons at www.NoLimitsHorsemanship.com. Road to the Horse 2022 takes place at the Kentucky Horse Park on March 24-27, 2022. Tickets are available at here or by calling 800-514-3849. Follow Road to the Horse on Facebook for the latest information and stayed tune to find out who will be revealed as the next Road to the Horse 2022 competitor.