Last week Pat Parelli put on a Colt Starting Clinic in Texas and gave viewers the option to view it via live streaming on their personal computer. I purchased the webcast and have 30 days to watch 24 hours of his Colt Starting Clinic. While I watch the process I have been jotting down important points and have decided to share them with you. This is Part I of many parts of my notes.
Colt Starting Naturally May 2011
Look for green lights. If a horse gives you a green light, Go! If he doesn’t give you a green light, don’t go. Be efficient; don’t doddle but don’t go too fast either.
Outline for Starting A Colt:
The horse has to
1) Accept the human. Using the 7 games you show the horse that you are not going to hurt them and you help them to accept you as the leader.
2) Accept the saddle. Work on the placement of the saddle and the cinch.
3) Accept the rider. Help the horse to see you as a passenger and then a guide.
4) Accept the bit. Ride from a hackamore to a bridle. Work on the placement of the bit and let them get used to it. Don’t use it to guide at first.
Important Points To Remember:
-Let the horse stop and sniff and be curious.
-Let them use their herd instinct and when starting have more than one in the vicinity of the other.
– When you touch a horse, go to his withers (that is what they do with each other, naturally). If he wants you to touch his face, let him come to you.
– Do not desensitize horses. Instead gain his confidence.
– In natural horsemanship it’s important to have attitude, loyalty, dedication, and talent. If you have the first three the talent will come.
– Never knock the curiosity out of a horse. Allow him to be curious.
– Do fun things with your horse. Rather than always making him back up because you want him to back up, let him backup for something that he wants likes backing into his stall to eat some hay. Ask him to do things that will allow him to want to do things.
-Up with the rope to stop a drift–“Life to stop drift”–and bend the horse to stop escape.
-If your approach is starting to feel rude to the horse and is making the horse mad, try a different approach.
-Horses are not afraid of predators, they are afraid of predatory behavior.
– Horses test obstacles first with their nose, then their neck, then their feet.
– Try less first.
– Be the comfort for your horse. When they look at you give them a minute. Let the horse give you credit.
More notes to come . . .