Thursday, January 5, 2012
Horse Training: Redneck Style
There are so many things wrong with this video, I almost had to get out a calculator to count them. This was posted by a friend on Facebook, who, even with his limited horse experience, was able to tell this was seriously stupid.
1. No helmet. On a very green horse. Aside from the ruination of this horse, this is my biggest pet peeve here. On the other hand, if this rider removed himself from the gene pool via massive head trauma, that wouldn't be so bad.
2. Inappropriately dressed "cowboy." Flat sneakers and shorts? Really? At least get a boot with a heel! It's like this guy wanted to get hurt.
3. Pulling on a horse to make it move. It seems logical, until you remember that a horse weighs a thousand pounds, and can lift you off of the ground with its neck alone. You can't out-pull a horse! What you can do is pull so hard on a horse's face that it gets pissed and rears away from the pressure-- just like this poor thing. My favorite part is when the "handler" on the ground leans on the rope so hard he's almost laying down-- it would have been perfect justice if the horse had chosen that moment to leap forward and squish him.
4. Totally inappropriate tack. First, of course, is the bit-- a long-shanked monstrosity designed to exert maximum leverage. In the wrong hands (these guys' hands) it's a jaw-breaker. Even in the right hands, you don't start a young horse in it! Next, that's not a real leadrope-- it looks more like a random, thin nylon rope from the back of a truck. No wonder it broke! And that saddle? Okay, I can excuse them for using a cheap one on an unbroke horse, if they're trying not to damage a good saddle on the first go-round; but at least make sure it fits the rider! It looks like the cantle is crawling up the guy's butt crack, and no one bothered to adjust the stirrups, so that even if he had gotten his feet in, he'd nearly be hugging his knees.
5. Yelling. Yeah, 'cause yelling loudly and angrily at a horse to is really going to want to make it move towards you!
6. Incredibly, awfully, terribly bad riding. Feet not in stirrups half the time, heels up, kicking and yanking back on the reins to make the horse move forward. This rider deserved to come off.
7. Wire fencing where you're breaking a horse to ride. Arghhh!!!! Smooth-wire pasture fencing itself isn't too bad; I use it myself. Wire fencing in an area where you know a horse is going to act up in a big way? Stupid! One of my biggest nightmares is losing control of a horse and having it run through a wire fence, there to get itself (and possibly me) tangled, lacerated or dragged. Note: people, do NOT try to make a "roundpen" out of wire and posts!!
8. Dangerous environment. Besides the issue with the fencing, I see a whole lot of forest that's going to A) spook the horse and B) be a potentially deadly hazard to a rider, if the horse becomes scared enough to start bolting through the brush. Oh, and did you glimpse the front of the ATV parked next to the fence? The cameraman is sitting on it. I bet the noise from that thing driving up really made this green horse feel calm!
9. This is a "maybe," but I'm betting I'm right-- this horse looks way too young to get broke. He's on the small side, and looks like he hasn't filled out yet-- like a two year old. If so, these idiots are doing him lasting harm physically as well as mentally. Of course, we could give them the benefit of the doubt and believe that it's just a small horse... but I wouldn't trust these guys to know how to use a bathroom without pissing themselves.
10. Too many players on the field. We've got Cowboy Idiot, Pulling Idiot, Spectator Idiot and Camera Idiot. All of 'em are making noise and making it more difficult for this green horse to chill out. If I had that many people around me while I was training a young horse, I'd tell them to back the hell off or prepare to get kicked in the face (by me, if not the horse). I especially liked it when Spectator Idiot stood in front of the horse next to Pulling Idiot. I wanted to tell that horse to leap forward "NOW!" and get two-for-one squishings. What a deal!