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The Truth About Horses: A Guide To Understanding And Training Your Horse

Balancing new scientific research with his practical horse-training experience, author Andrew McLean debunks long-standing myths about horses and presents a far-reaching, totally humane method of horse training. He starts by recognizing vast differences between equine and human brains and mental processes. He describes the traditional trainer's mistake of judging horses according to the standards of docile or good horse and bad-tempered or mean horse. The horse's brain cannot make abstract judgments about "good" or "bad" behavior, but readily responds to conditioning by trainers who understand the equine brain, the instincts that drive it, and a horse's way of knowing the world. The author emphasizes that by training a horse according to a set of consistent responses that coincide with equine instincts, horse owners can avoid undesirable horse behavior. He offers a training program and amplifies on it with enlightening case studies. Here is must-reading for every current and prospective horse owner and rider. More than 300 color photos.

Hardcover: 160 pages

Publisher: Barron's Educational Series; 1 edition (October 1, 2003)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0764155539

ISBN-13: 978-0764155536

Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 8.9 x 0.7 inches

Shipping Weight: 2 pounds

Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #753,428 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #33 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Pets & Animal Care > Horses > Showing & Training

For those of us familiar with behavioural training this book has been a long time in coming. So many times you are stuck between the traditional 'leg on, leg on, leg on' (where's the release??) training school or NH which has it's own achilles heal - continually activating the natural flight response and for most practitioners a total lack of understand of what positive reinforcement is.For those looking for a more extensive explaination of the actual training methods he has written a second book "Horse Training The McLean Way" however this one is meant to provide an introduction into behavioural training and then an overview of the types of exercises and horse 'problems' that they deal with. The book is well written and should be easily accessible to anyone interested even if they are not science-minded or well versed in behavioural psychology.For all the dressage riders with horses that buck instead at tempi-changes or rear instead of piaffe - reading this could make you understand that these are your problems not the horse! and save your dressage mount (and your competition career)

I've read about 25 books on training horses in the last month and a half, this has been the last one. I'm amazed that there has been a bad review and that the writer was "horrified" by the author's description of the intelligence of the horse.Well, read the title - "The TRUTH about Horses". As much as you would like to believe in your animal's higher intelligence, you cannot. Some are easier to train than others, but don't fool yourself.This is an excellent resource for those starting out or for those who need to retrain or even just refresh their own perspective. I highly recommend it. It was one of the two out of 25 I actually bought - I took the rest back to the library!

Andrew Mclean an animal behaviourist who has devoted his life to horse training and rider education is a jem in the world of trainers. His techniques work wonders and have improved my horses performance and my own understanding of those gracious animals to a formerly unknown level. Very simple to use, down to earth and scientifically founded he is setting a new standard in the industry. He is definitely my hero and I highly recommend him to any performance rider, trainer and riders intersted in natural horsemanship. May the horse be with you.

I have been a rider/trainer and instructor for the past 30 years. I have ridden with and trained with some of the top trainers in the world. I have read hundreds of books on the training of horses and been to dozens upon dozens of clinics with all of the "horse whisperers". After reading Andrew McLean's incredible book, I immediately went out and bought 10 copies to give to friends and trainers. I will agree with one of the reviewers that the book might be better appreciated by someone with a background in psychology and that Andrew does presume a certain knowledge level from the reader. Apart from that it is one of the most amazing books on training that I have ever come across. I began using many of Andrew's principles on our new green pony as soon as I finished the book and was simply floored by the simplicity and efficacy of the methods. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.

I found this book very enlightening to read.Too many horse training books are full of vague, almost mystical phrases about the attitude of the horse. This one brings it back to scientific behavioural principles which you can understand and apply.It explains learning theory (operant and classical conditioning) and then how it applies to training a young horse or correcting problems in an older horse. It has great step by step pictures to illustrate the points he makes. If you've ever been mystified about how a horse learns to do what you expect of it, you'll love this book.

I'm not enough of a horseman to compare McLean's training methods to others but I like what I read. I bought the book because the author is a scientist and the book helps give us a much better understanding of how the horse views the world. If you love horses or are just interested in why modern methods of training work then it's a good read. On the other hand if you are looking for neuroscience you had perhaps better look elsewhere.

As an owner and trainer of my own western performance horses, I found this book to be of immense value. It is the only publication hat I have come across, including more than fifty books in my own equine library, that takes what has gone before and integrates that material into learning theory. The simple act of throwing away all verbal references to human characteristics when training and evaluating horse performance is worth the price of admission. Excellent book.

A fantastic book that utilizes the authors research into animal behavior and training. His concepts were well explained and improved my understanding of horse training. I would certainly read another book from this author.

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