Wednesday, 21 December 2011

What is the best approach to use when resolving behavioural problems?

Although memories can never be forgotten, we can replace negative memories for triple the amount of positive ones towards a specific situation. It may be simply that our horse has gone 'stale' and we need to resolve this problem, or it could be something that takes a bit more work for example aggression or chronic bolting.

For decades, COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY (CBT) has been used to help humans overcome certain phobias or other problematic behaviours, and has proven extremely useful in the NHS.

Recent years have shown that this same approach can be applied when working in the clinical setting with animals. This is the technique that I may take for some cases that I work with.

Developed by Beck (1966) CBT means that we are essentially working in a step-by-step manner, setting up environments to create a series of 'win-win' situations around specific (or a multitude in some cases!) objects or situations.

This approach builds confidence for both horse and rider, across contexts, to all situations. The downward spiral of nerves, turns into an upward spiral of confidence and success!

Setting out your goals, working through a series of stages, to gradually progress up the ladder from the base upwards, ensures that even years after working through the problem, you and your horse have reached long-term solutions.

Contact me at Practical Horse People if you would like some help with your horse.

Katie Bristow-Wade

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