WiseAssWallace is a beloved guest columnist for Cayuse Communications. From his pasture in southwestern Colorado, he’s on a quest to improve horse-human connections and make lives better for his fellow equines.
In this installment, WiseAssWallace discusses the naughty ways in which humans, through their behavior, inflict pain and suffering on equines.
In my experience, naughty behavior from you folks often results from the mistaken belief that we are actually humans not horses. This belief ignores the fact that we like to spend our days with our heads below our bodies and that we have no compunction about pooping in front of you.
Consider, for example, your predilection for the Blame Game.
It’s funny how much of your talk has a way of implicating us innocents:
“He bucked me off”
“She stepped on my foot”
In order to be guilty, we’d have to be aware we were committing an offense. But, really, who is the offender here?
In these scenarios, I don’t see my compadres deliberately bucking off a rider. I see poor fellows wanting to get what’s on their backs off their backs. The riders, it seems, are bothering them and making them awfully uncomfortable. A bit like summer flies. Ahhh!
And guess what? We don’t go looking for feet to step on, either.
Please note: We are equines. For over 40 million years we have been prey animals. That means we fear being eaten. When we act, it is almost always in reaction to things around us. Or, on us. We strive to survive and we like comfort.
Ulterior motives? We don’t even know what that means.
Blaming us is like blaming the car for running out of gas. It’s really the blamer who’s lame.
Consider also: Agendas
Believe it or not, we do not wake up in the morning and think:
- Today is the day I finesse my flying change!
- Today, I’m not going to stop until I nail that downward transition.
Agendas. Goals. Milestones. That’s all bunk to us. None of it matters. What you think of as a milestone, we consider arbitrary. We can get frustrated, confused, and stressed when you strive to achieve something that has no consequence for us. Or even worse, ill consequence.
Try paying less attention to your To Do list and more attention to your To See list.
Do you see us licking our lips?
Do you see us swishing our tails or pinning our ears?
Do you see when we’re tuned in or turned off?
Do you see effects of pressure and then release?
Are we as pestered by you as we are by summer flies? Ahhh!
Sure, you can bully and drill, drill, drill. But the best progress is made when there’s an understanding between horse and rider. Remember: when it comes to training, we care about the journey, not the destination.
I’m WiseAssWallace and I guarantee it.