Another question. Once you are the herd leader, why do you have to do the bonder on a regular basis, In herd dynamics, once you are the leader, you are the leader till he/she dies? Don't you think that the horses will know after a while , to do the bonder in the round pen, because they know they can't go anywhere, but once in the open space, they "think' I don't like him as a leader, lets be silly. You could say as a teacher/ will the bonder wasn't there? Shouldn't you do the bonder in different sittings? Keep them interested/stimulated. May be that might be the case with J Millers problem. It is just a thought.
No leader is guaranteed to be the leader until he / she dies. Leaders are only leaders for as long as they can lead. In herd dynamics we have the two options at work at all times - take any rights you can take AND honor those that are taken if you cannot stop the taking (challenge).
At ANY given time a horse has the right not to accept me as leader for any reason. If I do not have the leadership ability to get him to comply with what I want, I have lost my ability to lead. Because I understand the nuances and the sequence of herd dynamics better than he does, I am able to get him to comply ANY time he changes his mind or has second thoughts. Notice I said *understand* the nuances and sequence, NOT that I respond to them as strongly as he does or that I am affected by them.
I don't really know what J Miller's (a reference to another person's "failed" first attempt bonder experience) problem is because I'm not there. I only know *I* would have no problem because the procedure is so ingrained in me that I can probably perform it with my eyes shut. As I have said, the horse has the right to change his mind, forget, whatever - this is a no force technique. *NOTHING* I can do can stop him from changing his mind if he wants to for what ever reason. All I *CAN* do is remind him using herd dynamics that I am the leader and choosing to not follow me means he is on his own. Since *he* is totally responsible for his own safety he seeks the safety of a herd.
Of course, I cheat a little and fix it so he is unable to go out and find a herd on his own. His only option is to come back into compliance. He psychologically NEEDS others to watch out for him. He cannot do the job on his own.
The bonder (or the establishment of a leader connection) does not need to be done over and over. It only needs to be done when the connection breaks or is weakening. With some horses one time lasts forever, with others you'll need touch ups. But as time goes on, the time between the touch-ups increases and the time to do the touch up decreases. We have a 22 year old Morgan broodmare who I retrained at 19 and is as connected to me as she was the day I performed the bonder on her. We have a Holsteiner colt who needed a number of touch ups. It got to the point where merely starting toward the pen was enough to bring him back into compliance.
I recommend performing the bonder in a round pen or other small enclosure simply because it is a lot easier to control the horse in smaller areas. It is not where you perform the bonder it is how. The ACTIONS of control bring about the REACTIONS of compliance. Once you have the herd dynamic actions down you will be surprised by some of the distances they will work over. I have had horses see me coming across a pasture and start to flee (chose to not accept me as leader) and I have moved as if they were in a round pen with me and had them suddenly comply. It is not where but how.
This concept of choice was what finally made me to decide to stop paying lip service to the Libertarian Party and make the decision to vote Libertarian regardless of which of the lesser of two evils method I used in the past. I happened to catch a few minutes of Mike Cloud's convention speech were he said, "Give up responsibility, you give up choice. Give up choice, you give up freedom. Give up freedom, you give up liberty." For decades we have been giving the Government responsibility for everything from education to employment. They have miserably screwed up everything they touch and we accept it - we allow others to make our choices in the mistaken assumption that we don't have to worry about anything. We have in our own minds removed fear. In return, the Government controls every facet of our lives and it is rapidly getting even worse. We unquestioningly accept their leadership.
Herd dynamics on a humongous scale.
That is what we want to accomplish with our horses. The bonder allows us to go to the horse and tell it, "We know how to take care of your fears.. Let us take care of it." The horse ALWAYS replies, "Okay." Hopefully, we do a better job of leading than our Government.
Marv "The bonder is NOT a training procedure, it is a connection choice procedure." Walker
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