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Change in Attitude

I wonder if anyone else has noticed a change in their horse's attitude since starting clicker training? I've sure noticed a difference in Shadow! His eyes are brighter, he's friskier, and he's eager to work and play with me. He seems less bored with his life. I think giving him clicker training to engage his mind has been a wonderful thing for him! Phil

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I've been kinda quite on this list. Just lurking and learning.....but regarding attitude changes. I can vouch for that one. My two year old stallion had a bad attitude.....thought he was king of the hill so to speak. Well, I started clicker training with him, started with targeting a cone, working slowly, a little everynight, and now I have a very nice, polite young man who will bow for me, I'm working on getting him to stand on a box, the front feet are up there now, so I'll start soon getting the back feet up on the box too, in a couple more days (if it ever quits snowing here). He'll back up on command, walk forward on command, and this is without halter or lead rope. I swear by clicker training now. My sheltie even loves it. He goes and gets the bag of clickers when he wants to "play". My husband is even amazed at the difference in my foxtrotter's attitude. I may even have to do the whole herd cause they all stand at the fence line and watch and listen when I'm outside working with the colt. I haven't forgotten pictures for you either. Soon as this dern snow goes away, I'll get some good ones for you. Deb Burnside

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You asked if we had a change of attitude in any of our horses with clicker training. I have a mare that ran me over and broke my arm last summer trying to be the first one in the barn to eat. A few months after that she threw me off coming down a hill and then ran off. Since I have been clicker training her, she has taken on almost a new personality. She is still the first one to come in but she does it quietly and she seems to have a new respect for me. Her ears are always forward now and she is very responsive to me. My other mare just didn't seem very interested in anything but now is also very responsive. Just the other day, they were all running out in the back and the gelding stuck his head into the shed where we keep the hay and straw and somehow stuck his head thru the middle of a small pallet. He lifted his head and it slid down his neck. This really frightened them all and they started to rodeo out behind the garage. As the mares raced around frantically and he did too, the pallet was swinging in circles around his neck. I went out to the barn and stood in the doorway not knowing what to do but had the clicker in my pocket. I clicked it and they all stopped dead. The 2 mares came in and went in their stalls and I closed their doors. I called the gelding over and he let out a big sigh and came in the barn. I clicked and told him to put his head down, he did, and I lifted the pallet over his head. Now this is the gelding that wouldn't let me put the bridle over his ears a few weeks ago. He sighed again, a biiiiiig sigh, and turned and walked into his stall. He has only been ridden 4 times. I don't know if I would have had such good luck had it been one of the mares with the pallet around her neck, but maybe..... That's my story and I'll stick with clicker training even though all my horse friends kind of laugh at me for using it. I'll get them converted yet. Gayle

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Dusty and Kitt have shown a big difference, especially Kitt. Kitt has never kicked at anyone, but he would always turn his back on you and look at you over his shoulder. Kitt would always walk away from you if you tried to approach him. Now, as you say, he faces me with his ears all perked up, his head held high, and big bright eyes. He even nickers to me when he sees me, though I don't think it's me he is interested in it's the c/t. ;-). Kitt will also, come to me when I call. If he gets spooked and runs off, I can coax him back. Anne

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>>I wonder if anyone else has noticed a change in their horse's attitude since starting clicker training?<<

Oh, indeed! Tessa was, often as not, quite disinterested in what I was trying to show her, would walk off to do more "interesting" things, etc. Once she got the idea of the clicker, she became *much* more willing, pays more attention, and is eager to please. It's also much easier to re-engage her interest if I've tried to proceed too fast and confused her.

I think this is one of the greatest things about clicker training -- the ease with which you can get the horse to engage their brain. They try harder, and will take some initiative to figure out exactly what you want. I remember when we first started picking up feet. I'd got her working pretty well with the left front, then went to the opposite front and reached down. She picked up the left front, looked at me for the click, didn't hear it, put the left down, and picked up the right. :-) Almost as if to say "Oh, you wanted me to pick up *that* foot.". :-) Todd

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ABSOLUTELY! (as Harry would say - still rings in my ears ;-) ) My Magia Negra was very mistrustful, fearful, nervous, tense. PNH made this a bit better, but the real change came through clicker training.

Once we had worked a bit with this, her eyes softened. She now comes to me with her two sabre ears pointed towards me, very interested in what will happen today, with that sweet, bright look in her spanish eyes - I just love the sight of it!

BTW, you can check her relaxed attitude yourself in some photos we took recenty. Visit as well as

In fact, Jorge de Moya, the famous PF trainer you see with Magia on the second website, commented about how soft and relaxed Magia was when he introduced his Maestro bit to her. I told him that this was due to CT, and he was quite surprised and interested....

Happy clicking! Yvonne

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