We’ve all heard the terms horse whisperer and animal communicator. Some people think it’s a bunch of hooey. Judge for yourself...
My experience with an animal communicator was in Canada while I was getting my accreditation certification with Josh Lyons. I want my horses to enjoy their jobs and what they do with me, but I was having a terrible time with Dixie in the third week of the program. I was hitting a wall with Dixie every time we had to learn something new.
The communicator required only my horse’s name, color, and age. Before I could get all this info out, Dixie started talking! The communicator said, “Wow!” Dixie has an attitude.
When she asked me about Dixie’s back leg, I acted dumb and said I don’t know anything (even though I did). She said the leg bothers Dixie and that Dixie is having problems with the lead-changing and sliding exercises. I hadn’t mentioned any problems or given her any questions to send her in that direction. At this point, I’m thinking I’m glad I called this woman.
Another thing she said was that Dixie was starting to get overwhelmed and confused with all the different stuff we were learning. Dixie said her brain was fried. I am sure this was the case, because mine was, too! She also said Dixie didn’t like barrel racing and asked not to do again. That really got me thinking. I was in Canada for reining training and had not mentioned the barrel racing episode over two years ago.
Dixie wanted me to acknowledge when she did well. She also liked it when I talked to her. I didn’t have anything to lose, so the next day, when we did a new lesson and she did well, I stopped and verbally acknowledged her. Ever since then, anyone who had seen us before and then after noticed Dixie and I have become different.
Everyone else who had a session with the communicator was also amazed. They sat there with open jaws and shaking heads.
The communicator had never met us or our horses, but she was right on with ALL of us. One of the other program participants had two horses who said they wanted to be sold. They didn’t like her. It was funny because she didn’t like them either. Another horse, a stallion, was having problems with energy. Neither the owner nor her vet could figure out what was going on. The communicator suggested checking his blood levels. The owner finally did, two months later. She emailed us all and guess what...they found the issue and were able to fix it.
I think all of us have a sort of inner communication or insight if we pay attention. I have become closer to all my animals and more aware of what is going on around me.
A woman at our barn signed up to have a visiting communicator “talk” to her horse, so, out of curiosity, I joined in. The communicator asked us to list things we wanted to know and she would present those topics to our horses. She does most of her communicating over the telephone, but we happened to have her in person. She stood outside of the stalls and introduced herself to each horse in turn.
First, she asked a general question about how each was feeling. Mind you, she never once saw these horses move, nor did she touch them physically. With each horse, she asked about any aches and pains. My horse Taz wanted me to know that I move my leg too much when riding and he isn’t sure what I am asking. Funny... my left hip frequently gives me issues and when riding dressage, my left leg swings way more than it should. This seems to cue Taz to canter even when I am not intending to ask. Hmmm?
When asked if he liked going barefoot (which he had been for about a year), he said he is still not quite used to it, but with more time, he may be able to cope. He also said he liked the “saddle I can hold above my head” (bareback pad and/or dressage saddle). A review of my heavier trail saddle found a place way up inside the gullet that pinched the sides of this withers. Another Hmmm...
Using the information he provided, I’ve made a few adjustments. I ride in a new trail saddle, added barefoot boots, and am more cognizant of my leg movement. I’ve noticed a tremendous change for the better.
My other horse, Cappuccino, has been challenging for years. During dressage lessons, he would buck or trip. He wanted to know why I never “let him run” out on the trail. I mentioned those issues. He communicated that riding in a circle is so boring that his mind cannot stay “on task” so he loses focus and stumbles. He assured me that out on the open trail, he would know where his feet are!
Diagnosed with navicular at age 4, he had special shoes and was on 20 Isoxoprine pills a day for years. One day, I just took him off the pills. His attitude was way better and his feet were no worse. Then, I took off the silly shoes and went barefoot and he got even better balance. We had a wonderful canter down a long tractor road. Just like he said, he did not stumble!
We all have stories to share or problems we just can’t figure out. Communicators, animal or otherwise, may be a valuable source. You have to have an open mind to take it seriously, or you may want to do it just for fun with your friends. You might figure out some problems no one else sees, or simply become closer to your horse.
Learn more about Professional Trainers Angelia Robinette-Dublin, a Josh Lyons Accredited Trainer and Jenny Lance, a Kathy Huggins Certified Trainer at www.LiveToRideHorses.com