Shaping is a wonderfully creative, kind and generous way to train horses. The foundation of shaping is encouraging horses to offer behavior and then building desired behaviors through positive reinforcement.
This type of learning process teaches the horse to think on his own and solve puzzles presented in training. Shaping a horse is more than just making him do a behavior and then giving him a carrot.
Shaping allows the horse to be an active participant in the training process; imagine a horse seeking a way to improve his canter depart or balance a halt on his own. These the type of results that begin to emerge through the power of shaping when a Volunteering horse is created.
The Volunteering Horse
The Volunteering Horse is a very special animal. The Volunteering Horse offers behaviors and volunteers to participate in and even lead the training. We, as trainers of the Volunteering Horse, have learned to follow where the horse is able to progress. We allow the horse to have a voice and a choice. When we honor and listen to that voice, their lives are improved and enriched.
The Volunteering Horse becomes happier and more fun to be around. Allow the horse his full personality, listen to the choices he makes, and hear his voice. This is what builds a great, mutually understanding, trusting relationship.