Use horses’ two main
and comfort, to your
BY JULIE GOODNIGHT
WITH HEIDI NYLAND
When you train a horse, it’s all about making him feel comfortable when he does the right thing and less so when he does the wrong thing. That training philosophy is based on the horse’s motivation. Horses aren’t motivated by food, but rather by the need for comfort and safety. They com- fort each other with activities such as mutual
grooming and swishing flies away from each other. Horses feel safe when they are
together—there is safety in numbers for prey animals. No horse can be hypervigilant all the time, so being in a group means someone can always keep watch.
You want your horse to want to look to you for comfort and safety. When you
have the skill to convert his desire to be part of the herd to instead be part of
your herd, you can train him to do amazing things.