Learn to Listen to your Horse

Take advantage of winter to spend quality time with your horse in the stable or paddock. Learn to listen to his voice as he communicates with you. Watch his ears and eyes for alertness, watch the tail for signs of relaxation or unhappiness, and watch his mouth for signs of tension. The more you pay attention to your horse and how he reacts in everyday situations such as grooming, leading around the stable, tacking up, or in the stall, you will quickly be able to determine if he is sick or uncomfortable. One sign of muscle soreness or Lyme disease is extreme tenderness on the immune points on the chest when grooming. Another is extreme flinching when groom the back and shoulders. Take time to note how your horse reacts every day and tune into his mood. You will develop more trust and a better partnership under saddle.

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