Science-Based Equine Training / Equine Behavior Consultant / Positive Reinforcement/ Life Coach / Educator
When training horses, I look into what could be causing the horse to act this way then build a training program accordingly, empowering and confidence-building the horse and the human. I teach the human about horse behavior and train them to see what the horse is trying to say. In this training program, the horse always gets a choice, the horse tells us where the training should go. What a human calls "bad behavior" in horses is the horses' way of trying to tell us something.
I am now an Equine Behavior Consultant through the IAABC (International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants) Science-based animal training, Practicing LIMA (Least Intrusive Minimally Aversive). I have been an owner, trainer, and student for numerous years and doled in different modalities of horse training that has molded who I am, but bar none, the IAABC science-based training is the main direction I’m going. It’s not only ethical but the horse always has a choice and drives the direction the training goes to.
Training also includes working on ourselves. I’ll be constantly trying to improve myself and help others in how to do so. Being mindful, grounded, self-aware, and practicing authenticity is paramount in being with horses. We are not perfect, but we can always strive to become the very best we can be.
Let’s talk about Red, my first horse love, an amazing teacher, and what a great horse he was! He never gave anything away, I had to work for everything. I learned from him constantly.
Through Red, I found that horses absolutely can be our best friends. I am forever grateful for my magnificent horse - I greatly miss him. (Red passed away in 2015.)
I now have 2 rescue horses, Crimson and Cream, that are my new teachers. So, by now you have read that horses are one of the best teachers in the horse world and my 2 are 2 of the best!
Crimson was to be put down for incidents of viciously attacking both people and other horses. She had developed severe anxiety, fear issues, and was extremely unconfident.
Cream was unmotivated, into learned helplessness and double barrel kicking at humans. She was orphaned at the feedlot at a mere 6 months old, alone, and left to fend for herself. Through extended research, I found out that Cream has a muscle disease which also explains a lot of her actions. (we must always look into what the cause could be for the behavior, pain/discomfort is always #1 to look for)
Thankfully, both horses were picked off the feedlot by a horse rescue and the 3 of us have certainly come a long way in the last 2 years.
What I saw when I met them were two greatly misunderstood horses. I saw soft eyes, a desire to interact with humans, but they just had not been given the chance to, or simply did not know how to begin this relationship with a loving, caring human.
Our relationship continues to grow and I’ll be sharing more about our journey on my blog.
Background / Education / Qualifications
Equine Behavior Consultant (IAABC- International Association of Behavior Consultants) Practicing LIMA (Least Invasive Minimally Aversive), focusing on Positive Reinforcement Training.
Ongoing student of the IAABC classes including:
Fundamentals of Animal Behavior and Learning, Resolving Fear Issues in Horses, Equine Enrichment, Behavior Modification Consultation
Center for Excellence Graduate - Equine Psychology and Human-based Life Coach
Clinician at Duchess HSUS Horse Sanctuary in Oakland, OR, teaching the following clinics and workshops: Listening and Communicating with Horses: Understanding how they communicate and interact with humans.
Former Natural Horsemanship Trainer. Please Note: I have modified the training techniques of NH, practicing LIMA, and continue to incorporate a “positive reinforcement” training modality.
Volunteered at a number of horse rescues to diagnose behavior and prepare horses for adoption to their forever homes.
Ongoing student of Ben Hart, an IAABC certified Equine Behavior Consultant and Horse, Donkey and Mule Behaviorist trainer for animal welfare organizations, businesses, and charities.
Animal Reiki 1 Practitioner
Authored 2 stories, published in “Ask Your Animal”, by Marta Williams, an animal communication book.
Consulted for the writing of the published book “The Misleading Mind” by Karuna Cayton. This was a huge endeavor that took a clear understanding of Buddhist Psychology. I organized countless pages and transcripts for well over a year then supported in assembling the book for publication.