Meet Ted. Not the man, the horse! Ted and I have been working together for a couple of years now.
When I started trimming him his hind toe angles were at +80 degrees(!). Highly unnatural and he was clearly suffering from that. So was I when he allowed his 900 some kilo’s to rest on my legs while trimming his fronts. You can imagine, he was literally tipping over standing on those high heels! It was one of those trims you’ll never forget…
Anyhow, his angles came down in a couple of trim sessions. How? Well, this was the miracle of nature. There was nothing to trim really. No heels to bring down, no wall to take out. All I did was remove a some bar, a few bites of dead sole and and overgrown frog. Nothing worth mentioning.
Three trim sessions to be precise and his feet were back to natural standards. It was an amazing transition for me as a practitioner of the natural trim. Again and again the trim prooves itself. No shortcuts, no loopholes, mimicking natural wear only. Is that beautiful or what?!
Then something went wrong in the last year. Where and how, I’m not sure exactly. But Ted went from being a good old boy getting trimmed by novice students, to being Ted the Menace. He started tossing me around like a rag doll and at some point I had to call it quits. I’m big, but Ted’s bigger!
I decided to collaborate with one of my clients, Jan Sjöcrona and asked him to do the handling for the most part. I would focus on trimming his feet. It was no picnic, but we managed to keep him calm and trim his feet again. Now we have to follow up on that and bring him back to being that good old boy we could all trim. All we need is some time.
Somewhere along the way Ted managed to fool me, or I fooled myself, and we lost that connection we had. He is good example of why you don’t want to fight the horse, because you can’t win. With some horses you may think you can ‘win’ physically. But you will loose on an emotional level.
In the horse’s world there is no equality, there is only the equity of equines. One is always subordinant to the other. It is the way they function in the wild, and therefore it is the way they function with us. Too many accidents happen because people are not aware of this.
Please think about this carefully. There is nuance in the natural trim and there is nuance in leading a horse. You can take a rasp and destroy an active pillar with one swipe, and you can raise your hand and destroy your leadership.
Lead your horse, or it will naturally lead you.
Pictures taken by Frederique Molenaar, www.fmfotografie.nl