Too young to back? Why a two year old needs to be left to mature

Enthusiasm and a desire to develop a strong bond with your horse can nudge you to embark on the process of backing your youngster without fully understanding the potential risks involved. Backing obviously has to happen at some point in the development of a riding horse, and it requires careful consideration and expertise. Below IContinue reading “Too young to back? Why a two year old needs to be left to mature”

Brand New Equine Training Instructor Diploma Course Has Started!

The NAC Equine Training Instructor Diploma course is OPEN!! (now do the Strictly “votes are open” dance) and we’ve had two brilliant introduction Zoom calls today (two, to take account of all the different time zones). Look away now if you don’t want to see an education provider gush about their own course. Our studentsContinue reading “Brand New Equine Training Instructor Diploma Course Has Started!”

Human-animal relationships in south-east Turkey, a behaviourist’s personal perspective

There has been a more widespread move towards keeping dogs as pets over the last ten years in some areas, interesting sociologically and behaviourally. Two signs of (relatively) greater affluence in a locality are more estate agents and the emergence of pet shops. The introduction of trap-neuter-return (TNR) policies, animal welfare legislation and municipally-funded animalContinue reading “Human-animal relationships in south-east Turkey, a behaviourist’s personal perspective”

Can you spot a stressed horse?

Last December I and my colleagues published a paper describing one of our research studies, in the peer-reviewed journal Animals.  As the Equine Behaviour and Training Association (EBTA) we investigated how horse owners, riders and trainers recognise signs of equine stress. We found that equestrians often fail to recognise the behavioural signs that horses displayContinue reading “Can you spot a stressed horse?”

Equine Behaviour in Mind

Applying behavioural science to the way we keep, work and care for horses. I’m very proud to have co-authored this book with a group of esteemed colleagues. Intended for people who work with horses and for owners who want to learn more, Equine Behaviour in Mind provides ideas for practical ways that changes can beContinue reading “Equine Behaviour in Mind”

On becoming horse; on becoming human

A study published in the journal Social Anthropology suggests that riders and horses can together enter into a unique state of interspecies “co-being”, where human and horse evolves to “fit” better with each other, both physically and mentally. Anita Maurstad, PhD, a professor at Norway’s University of Tromsø and Dona Davis, PhD and Sarah CowlesContinue reading “On becoming horse; on becoming human”

Robots, Rollkur and Roundpens

Equine behaviourist Felicity George reports on the 2012 conference of the International Society for Equitation Science (ISES), a not-for-profit organisation that aims to enhance horse welfare and improve the horse-rider relationship by facilitating research into equine training.  Covering a wide range of equine matters including equine and rider phsyiology and training,  our emotional response toContinue reading “Robots, Rollkur and Roundpens”

A. F. Tschiffely, Long Rider

An email enquiry today had as its footnote a quote from long rider A F Tschiffely, and sent me right back to my childhood when I read this amazing book, Tschiffely’s Ride. Tschiffely rode two Criollo horses over 10,000 miles from Buenos Aires to Washington DC in 1925, arriving there in 1928 after many andContinue reading “A. F. Tschiffely, Long Rider”