How to Let Your Horse Know Who is Boss, and Everyone Else Too


| 6/16/2015 10:46:00 AM



Mental Morsels 

Jamie Cearley, PhDThe horse community can be quite controversial. There is however one thing all horse folks seem to agree on; to be a good horseman you must be a good leader. “You need to show him who is boss” could be the mantra of the horse world. It is not so much this phrase as it is the behavior following on the part of the person intending to be the boss that starts all the fuss.

This divergence is in large part a direct result of the level of leadership skill on the part of the horseman. Where a horseman stands in the following progression of leadership skill will not only determine how they go about showing their horse whose boss but will also directly affect the horses behavior in response. Incidentally, horses tend to be more blatantly honest in their feedback regarding leadership skills than humans.

horse kick 

Listening to a horse's feedback will provide a clear picture of what human friends are feeling about a person’s leadership skills, yet just don’t have the audacity to say to their face.



While each of the tactics below are necessary and useful at times, in general they can be thought of as depicting increasing levels of leadership ability.