How To Get A Horse To Trust You?

How to get a horse to trust you? Horses can lose trust in you like human beings can disappoint each other and lose trust in one another. Horses that haven’t been socialized also require horse training and spend time together. As a professional horse whisperer, I we here guide you to gain respect from your horse.

Ditte Young | Author | Animal communicator | Clairvoyant

Table of Contents

How To Get A Horse To Trust You?

A horse’s trust is gained by you connecting with it and you become the pack leader between you and your horse.

To build horse trust, I recommend you focus on:

Stay Consistent

The more consistent you are, the faster you build up your horses’ trust. The mindset of a horse reminds me a lot of the mindset of a child or a toddler. Both of them need routines. The more structured you are and repeating your actions, the faster you build up trust. 

To stay consistent is not a matter of practicing being violent towards your horse if it doesn’t listen. Staying consistent means having patience and connecting with it the same way daily. After a while, your horse will know what you say is what you do. Then you have gained your horse’s respect and trust.

Practice Active Listening

Building trust with your horse is a two-way street. Your horse needs to trust you, but you also need to trust your horse. Connecting with a horse is a nonverbal bond where energy, the horse’s body language, and its temper are relevant signals for you to listen to understand your horse even better. 

You can read many signals by looking at the horse’s mouth, ears, and body language to see if it seems stressed or calm. To practice active listening is to be open and not assume anything you don’t know.

Undo Preconceptions & Embrace Opportunities

To get a trusting horse, I recommend you to be open to your new horse and never have preconceptions about how it works or what kind of personality it has. A horse owner only knows what they have experienced histories with other horses or what other people are telling them. 

Humans tend to project prior experiences onto a unique situation, which can cause misunderstandings between you and your new horse. Embrace opportunities that will follow in the meeting with your horse and be open for this learning process your horse is to your personal growth by being in the world the way it is.

Additional reading: How to get a horse to come to you.

Ditte Young | Author | Animal communicator | Clairvoyant
Ditte Young | Author | Animal communicator | Clairvoyant
Ditte Young | Author | Animal communicator | Clairvoyant
Ditte Young | Author | Animal communicator | Clairvoyant

Why Does A Horse Lose Trust In You?

Horses lose trust in you for various reasons. Some are:

Collision

Some horse owners forget that horses are flight animals. 

They live by their instincts, and if they are experiencing too much pressure or feel unsafe, they have three options:

Horses are just as individual as we humans are. I’ve seen different personality profiles in horses throughout the years; each personality has a pattern in their behavior. 

I experience from spending time with the horses in the field that they can be either:

I have named the dominant horses for “Prince or Princesses.” If these characters are experiencing pressure that is too high, they will go into a collision with you and fight you. 

They will stomp their feet, refuse to move forward, and eventually try to buck the rider off.

Trapping

Since horses are pack animals that live freely in nature, many horses instinctively prefer the emotion of freedom no matter what they do. Even in training, many horse owners use freedom as a positive reinforcement to tell the horse that they will give them back their freedom when they do what I want.

A good leader knows this and will never do anything that will make the horse feel trapped. I recommend never pushing your horse so much that it feels cornered or trapped to build trust. The only thing you will gain from trapping is a traumatized horse that will take months to undo again.

Pushing

Your horse is physically bigger and stronger than you are. I’ve seen many horse owners pushing their horses onto a trailer or pushing them during riding to make them know that the rider was in control. 

The only thing they have gained from that is a horse that now knows it refuses to do what you just asked it to do. Pushing creates more pushing.

How To Regain Respect With A Horse?

Both you and the horses have a nervous system that works like humans. If it experiences a shock or a trauma, the experience is locked in the nervous system and will take many months to unlock again. To win your horse’s trust back, you must spend many hours training this with your horse, which is time spent well.

Rebuild Relationship With Your Horse

You can rebuild your relationship with your horse and build trust if you are open and patient. Please know that your horse feels unsafe with you or the situation you are trying to present it to. I recommend you move forward very slowly and consistently be a good leader. 

From the horse’s point of view, it doesn’t think about what you do. It reacts by instinct. To make sure to build up trust, you need to focus on the nervous system. Take a lead rope and present your horse to an object or a situation it is afraid of but do it far away.

That can be a horse who’s afraid of:

I recommend you introduce your horse to one of these objects, but you are standing so far away that your horse registers the object but can’t see it. You have to be calm to make your horse trust you and be focused on your energy as the leader. You can repeat this exercise the day after but come a bit closer to the object.

After a while, you can now stand closer to what feels dangerous to the horse, but you have now spent days focusing on your connection in a difficult situation, and your horse has taught you that. When you sense your horse is tense, you move away from the object again and start from there the following day. You never push your horse over its limitations; when it knows it can trust you, it will build up more trust. 

Want a greater understanding of your horse’s mental and physical state? Check out my EquiCoaching online sessions. 

Use Treats & Clicker Training

You can also use training methods to build up trust by using:

To indeed win your horse’s trust back. One horse is not the same as the other, so please remember that the time it will take for the nervous system to be balanced varies from horse to horse.

You can also take your horse for a long walk and connect with it while having an object it is afraid of on you. If it is a cutting machine, I recommend you show it to your horse when you are at that point where it tolerates seeing it. But don’t press the “on- button” before your horse accepts the sound or vibration from the machine. 

When you take your horse for a long walk with the cutting machine, your horse will experience that what you say is what you do. That builds trust faster.

Recover Confidence With Your Horse

You can always recover confidence with your horse, but it depends on how patient you are, and that you will always promise your horse to mentally prepare it for anything you will do.

That can be:

You have no idea how many words your horse understands. 

Preparing your horse combined with giving it recognition helps the process a lot. Your horse understands you because you communicate nonverbally with it all the time, which helps recover confidence.

Signs Your Horse Trust You

You can tell if your horse trusts you by reading the signs your horse is signaling to you. 

The main signals are whether or not your horse follows your instructions if your horse approaches you, and you can read the signs on your horse’s body language.

The Horse Follows Your Instructions

If the horse follows your instructions, you have built up trust between you, and you are sending signals to your horse that you are the leader. Many horse owners ask me the reason for their horses don’t listen to them.

I always help them by focusing on the following:

If these bullets are fulfilled to the point, then your horse should follow your instructions. Suppose you need help practicing one of the topics. In that case, you can receive support from a horse trainer, coach, equestrian, or animal communicator specializing in behavioral issues.

The Horse Approaches You & Allows Touch

If the horse approaches you and allows your touch, you know that you have built up trust between you and your horse. Some horses are physically sensitive and compare being touched with a painful experience, shock, or trauma. The more predictable you are before approaching or touching your horse, the better.

I think you should always approach your horse the same way as possible each day, and I also suggest that you touch your horse in the same following order each day. That makes you predictable and builds up trust. If your horse suffers from one, it can also heal a shock or a trauma with human interaction in the long run.

The Horse’s Body Language

You can read the horse’s body language by looking at its ears. If it lays down the ears, it can be a sign of stress or resilience towards you or what you want to offer it. 

Your horse can stomp its feet to signal to be stressed or impatient. Your horse can shiver when it feels nervous or anxious. And if your horse seems to like it does not want to do a practice in the training sessions, it is because it has difficulties physically doing that, and not necessarily because it doesn’t want to do it mentally.

If that is the case, I recommend you ask a veterinarian or find treatments that will suit your horse, such as:

Many horse owners doubt if the horse refuses to do something based on fear or if it has a health problem that makes it difficult to practice the exercises.

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Ditte Young

Ditte Young has worked as a spiritual coach, therapist and clairvoyant for 23 years. She is an author of 3 books about animal communication and is known as Denmark's most recognized animal communicator.

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