Maybe you’re being too friendly or nice with your horse. Let’s look at it from the human perspective. First, how serious is it that your horse gets in your space? If you answered, “Oh…it’s not too bad.”, then you would be seriously mistaken. A horse getting into your space is as serious and dangerous as a nest of rattle snakes. If you think about it, it really is that serious. After all, if you have a 1,200-pound, solid muscle, 4-legged bomb go off in your midst, you’re in for big trouble. Remember, a horse has reflexes 5 times faster than any boxer. Also, there is no way you can out-muscle them. Combine their strength and reflexes with their flight instinct and you can have a lethal situation if it isn’t handled correctly.
Knowing how lethal it can be should now convince you not to handle it too lightly. After all, the horse doesn’t know “not” to get in your space. He needs taught. He must know he can’t do it. You must be as determined and intent to not allow it as you would not allow your child to get mixed up in drugs, play with matches and knives, or not cross the street without looking. Since you must be assertive about the horse getting in your space, then be assertive. The problem most people have is not understanding the lethalness of the situation. The second thing is being too dang friendly with their horse to rectify the situation. What I mean is this. If your child is caught messing with drugs, you wouldn’t be friendly about it and say, “Now honey…, don’t do that please.” Instead, you’d do intervention. You may want to rip him away from those influences and take big action to get this stopped. Why? Because it’s that serious.
So is the horse getting in your space. In fact, anything that’s dangerous to you with your horse should be treated very seriously. So, when the horse gets in your space, don’t be friendly about it. Be like that teacher you had in elementary school who was fair but wouldn’t allow nonsense. How, then, do you get assertive with the horse? Do you hit him? No. Do what they do in the herd. Use a lot of body language. If your horse won’t move, then get more animated. Forget being friendly for the moment. Friendly don’t cut it when the horse is dangerously in your space. One last nifty tip. When you need to get assertive with the horse, try looking him in the eye when you do. That increases your assertiveness in your horse’s mind and will get him understanding even more that you mean business.
Provided by Horse Training Resources.