We have all encountered horses with behavior issues, from bucking to rearing, “girthiness” to rushing fences. What we should always stop and consider however, is that perhaps some of the behavior problems we see aren’t really behavioral, and are instead linked to a physical problem and pain.
Sometimes finding a physical problem isn’t easy, but it is still important to give our horses the benefit of the doubt and take the time to rule out possible issues before pushing harder in training or labeling the horse “bad.”
The same goes when we start asking more from our horses, and work on improving and developing them physically through suppling, bending, or collection exercises. Stiffness can come from a horse that is mentally guarded, nervous, etc., but it can also just be plain stiffness.
As well as natually having areas that are tighter, horses also have a dominant side – no different than how inept we feel when we try to use our non-dominant arm for even simple tasks like brushing our teeth! (actually their “one-sidedness” is more lateral than literally one side, but I explain that more in the video)
So take a look at today’s video and meet the horse who is reminding me to “consider the physical” time and time again.
See you in the comments,
p.s. Look for the crazy bug at 1:13!