The sacked horse hitting ex teacher is going to court

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Errin Paddywack

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We dont know it was a one off do we?
I don't think it was a regular occurrence based on how the pony reacted. It wasn't obviously scared, just surprised, at least that was the impression I got. If it had been used to being beaten up I would have expected it to be panicky, not shrug its shoulders and load into the trailer.
 

Upthecreek

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Unfortunately as in a few cases recently, a terrified, confused,starved, bruised, beaten child begging for someone to love them is not enough for a social worker to deem it child abuse. Seems to take a death before they fo anything
I completely agree, it’s disgraceful. But the question I asked is because I am trying to understand how people on this thread would feel if the person in that video did exactly the same to a child as she did to the horse. I’m not talking about a child or a horse being starved, bruised and beaten. Fred66 said the video alone would not be sufficient to prove animal cruelty. Pearlsasinger said the same in relation to a child if the incident was a one off.

I have never stood in front of my children, or my horses or my dogs and hit them on the face and kicked them in the chest. I’m genuinely interested to hear opinions on this because I can’t understand how I am seeing it so differently to some. And I’m not saying they should lock this woman up and throw away the key, but perhaps the consequences she has faced will make her think twice before treating anything in her care like that again.
 

minesadouble

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I completely agree, it’s disgraceful. But the question I asked is because I am trying to understand how people on this thread would feel if the person in that video did exactly the same to a child as she did to the horse. I’m not talking about a child or a horse being starved, bruised and beaten. Fred66 said the video alone would not be sufficient to prove animal cruelty. Pearlsasinger said the same in relation to a child if the incident was a one off.

I have never stood in front of my children, or my horses or my dogs and hit them on the face and kicked them in the chest. I’m genuinely interested to hear opinions on this because I can’t understand how I am seeing it so differently to some. And I’m not saying they should lock this woman up and throw away the key, but perhaps the consequences she has faced will make her think twice before treating anything in her care like that again.
As a starting point if I 'patted' one of my children the same way I pat my horses affectionately they would find it painful and would probably be marked. If I scratched my daughter's leg in exactly the same manner I scratch my horses withers, she would be shouting with pain whilst my horse would be curling up in pleasure!! It's all relative and seems pretty obvious to me.
 

ycbm

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I am trying to understand how people on this thread would feel if the person in that video did exactly the same to a child as she did to the horse.
It's a bit of a daft question, though, isn't it?

What are you expecting anyone to answer?

"Oh I think it's fine to hit and kick children". ??

Nobody has said it's fine to do what she did to that pony, so why would they say anything different about a child?
.
 
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Pearlsasinger

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I can pretty much assure you that a single instance of an adult hitting /kicking a child within the family would be unlikely to result in any kind of legal action. It could result in support being offered by Social Services, as it would be felt that the adult was for some reason under extreme stress at the time. I have reported injuries to children which have merely resulted in a visit by SS with no further action whatsoever.
If the actions were repeated systematically over time, there might be further intervention.

The pony in the video appeared to be uninjured and not overly bothered. A not very big adult would struggle to cause actual physical harm to a pony with a few slaps and kicks, which as I have said before, does not mean that I think she behaved appropriately.
 

Upthecreek

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As a starting point if I 'patted' one of my children the same way I pat my horses affectionately they would find it painful and would probably be marked. If I scratched my daughter's leg in exactly the same manner I scratch my horses withers, she would be shouting with pain whilst my horse would be curling up in pleasure!! It's all relative and seems pretty obvious to me.
But it’s not relative or obvious in the context of what happened on the video. To use your analogy I walk my dogs on leads and feed them dog food. I don’t do the same to my kids. Of course I understand that we treat different beings in different ways, but hitting and kicking is violent behaviour, regardless of who is on the receiving end.

We all seem to agree that her behaviour was unacceptable, but it certainly seems more acceptable/excusable/less serious to some than others. It will certainly be interesting to hear the outcome of the trial.
 

planete

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For safety reasons alone we do need to be "Alpha" over a 500kg animal I'm afraid!
We need to have trained him to trust us enough to want to do what we ask of him. At 5' and under 8 stone I have never been under the illusion I was going to get anywhere by bossing around the horses or dogs I trained. If you call being firm but fair being alpha though, then yes it is very necessary. Terminology can trip us up. :)
 

Sandstone1

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Being the "Alpha" is a term that used to be used in dog training. However, the dominance theory has been disproved some time ago. It came from wolf packs. Please look it up before using it.
 

paddy555

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Being the "Alpha" is a term that used to be used in dog training. However, the dominance theory has been disproved some time ago. It came from wolf packs. Please look it up before using it.
if you replace "alpha" with leader will that make you happier. Leaders and followers. Not sure where wolves and dogs come from in relation to horses.
 

IrishMilo

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I am afraid the dominance theory has been disproved and is now very out dated. Try looking up positive reinforcement and learning theory.
Humans do not need to be the "Alpha"
This sort of attitude just shows how much things need to change.
Genuine question - how would you see fit to deal with a horse who, for example, barged through you coming out the stable? Or you were trying to groom and they kept swinging their arse into you and knocking you all over the shop?

Horses understand black and white - which isn't violence. But short, sharp corrections in the heat of their wrongdoing. It's the safest, easiest way to teach them for them AND us.
 

Birker2020

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Genuine question - how would you see fit to deal with a horse who, for example, barged through you coming out the stable? Or you were trying to groom and they kept swinging their arse into you and knocking you all over the shop?

Horses understand black and white - which isn't violence. But short, sharp corrections in the heat of their wrongdoing. It's the safest, easiest way to teach them for them AND us.
I have tried all sorts of 'corrections' during the time I've had Lari. He isn't a biter per se but likes to nibble on clothes and other items as a kind of coping mechanism (in my mind). He also likes to carry the lunge line around in his mouth and mouths things quite a lot, whatever he can get his 'hooves on' he will stuff into his mouth, like an overgrown Labrador (which is how he was described in the advert).

Hand on heart the only consistent thing that I have found that works after the 100th time of smacking his nose or telling him in a gruff voice "NO!" is when he goes to bite/chew something and then decides not to. You can see him working out the pros and cons in his mind and he goes to mouth something or bite something/someone and then decides against it.

IF I see him stop in his tracks as he's about to mouth my coat pocket and suck mints through the lining he will get rewarded with a scratch/pat/mint. I have found that this is 100% more effective than anything else.

This past fortnight I have rarely had him try to chew/bite anything which is progress. He is very food orientated so this technique has worked quite well with him. But I am quick to recognise they are all different.
 

smolmaus

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Genuine question - how would you see fit to deal with a horse who, for example, barged through you coming out the stable? Or you were trying to groom and they kept swinging their arse into you and knocking you all over the shop?

Horses understand black and white - which isn't violence. But short, sharp corrections in the heat of their wrongdoing. It's the safest, easiest way to teach them for them AND us.
A correction which would typically be moving them out of your space (however you do that) isn't at all related to what is typically meant by "Alpha"/ dominance theory. What you're describing is classic positive punishment.

The "Alpha" theory is based on constant physical competition. Every interaction has to be "won" so you retain your "top dog" position, which might get you a submissive and "obedient" dog if you can physically dominate them often enough but you will lose with any 500kg horse who genuinely sees you as competition. It's nonsense for dogs but completely idiotic to use with horses.
 

Pearlsasinger

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I sometimes wonder how often people just stand and watch their own horses interacting in the field. I know it's easier when you have your own herd at home, as we do, but I notice that *at times* they are very physical with each other, to the point that the last time we had 4 horses, they had to be separated into 2 pairs, or a couple of them were in real danger of causing each other a serious injury, even without shoes. No unarmed human could possibly cause a 500kg horse anything like that kind of injury.

Whatever the term you use, the human has to be the decisionmaker in the relationship between horse and human, *for safety's sake*.
 

smolmaus

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I sometimes wonder how often people just stand and watch their own horses interacting in the field. I know it's easier when you have your own herd at home, as we do, but I notice that *at times* they are very physical with each other, to the point that the last time we had 4 horses, they had to be separated into 2 pairs, or a couple of them were in real danger of causing each other a serious injury, even without shoes. No unarmed human could possibly cause a 500kg horse anything like that kind of injury.

Whatever the term you use, the human has to be the decisionmaker in the relationship between horse and human, *for safety's sake*.
The difference for me here is that the horses are very capable of communicating with eachother, even when they are being aggressive. They both know what is going on and to a certain extent both of them will have escalated to that point knowing what the outcome will be.

When a human whacks a horse in the gob the horse doesn't necessarily know why, we can't really tell them why, they have to figure it out for themselves. A flick in the nose for biting might be clear enough and we have had several examples in this thread and the previous of a good whack being necessary in the heat of the moment to prevent injury, but in a lot of cases (in this case in particular) the whack in the gob accomplishes nothing other than making the horse confused. A horse regularly being whacked and not knowing why is going to cause some sort of psychological "injury" that a scrap between fieldmates isn't going to create.
 

honetpot

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I think horse, dominance, which a poor description, communication is subtle, it's based on knowledge and trust, but their whole body communicates, from a rested leg to a flicked ear, and often we are communicating like someone shouting very loudly in a foreign language, expecting someone else who does not speak that language to understand.
The horse vocabulary does include biting and kicking, while ours hopefully does not, but most of the time, where they stand, how they stand and facial expressions work day to day, but we ask them to do things, like stand in a moving box, in the dark and accept it, without sometimes clear where the benefit is. If you have children you often see a pony 'trying it on', it's not being naughty, but really it would rather wander off and eat grass, than be with a small person, it does not really value that much. in any terms it sees a valuable, as worth paying attention to. If the small person is backed by an adult presence, and will not run off crying, it will probably comply.
We had a pony that used to bully children. You could stand at his head the child one side, the adult the other side, if the child held the rope, he would headbutt them and push them over, you could pass the rope to the adult and he would not move. You can not make any horse doing anything by violence, all you do is make it more advantageous to do as asked, and negative behaviour not rewarded. The same pony would drag a child away from the ramp when loading, he would load for and adult, putting another pony in first and he would drag the child up the ramp, the advantage of being with his friend outweighed the child asking him something he wouldn't normally want to do.
Horses do a lot worse to each other than the odd kick, there is usually an escalation of events, even if we do not see it before it happens, and in horse terms is makes absolute sense. Horses are a lot more aware of our body language than we are, and the horse being kicked by the women was probably well aware it was in trouble long before she got anywhere near it, and if it was really frightened, or literally the grass was greener, it would have been off like the clappers. She lost her temper, which is human, the horse reacted in a horse way, it thought it better go in the box.
 
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Sandstone1

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if you replace "alpha" with leader will that make you happier. Leaders and followers. Not sure where wolves and dogs come from in relation to horses.
Because dominance theory comes from wolf packs. The top dog is called the Alpha. Its been completely disproved with dogs as basically dogs are not wolves and they also know we are not dogs. So to try and treat them as other dogs treat them does not make sense.
Its pretty much the same for horses in my opinion. We are not horses and should not try to use force to control them. Obviously a 8 stone person can not control a 500kg horse by force but they can by fear.... Try reading about the dominance theory. It quite complicated.
Whatever, hitting and kicking a pony out of temper is wrong. Thats the bottom line here.
 

Pearlsasinger

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It surprises me that some posters think it is acceptable/effective to hit a horse on the nose as retribution for biting and yet think that the woman in the video should have lost her livelihood and be subject to a court case for hitting her pony on the head. That seems like 'it's fine for me to do it but not for you'.:rolleyes: Double standards or what?

The best way to stop a horse biting you is to not put it in a position where it can do that, inthe first place. You (one) need to be much more aware of the horse's body language.
 

paddy555

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A correction which would typically be moving them out of your space (however you do that) isn't at all related to what is typically meant by "Alpha"/ dominance theory. What you're describing is classic positive punishment.

The "Alpha" theory is based on constant physical competition. Every interaction has to be "won" so you retain your "top dog" position, which might get you a submissive and "obedient" dog if you can physically dominate them often enough but you will lose with any 500kg horse who genuinely sees you as competition. It's nonsense for dogs but completely idiotic to use with horses.
dominance (I looked it up) means having power and influence over others. Nothing about aggressive or abusive. That is what we have over the horse.

I am struggling with your 2nd para. Every interaction has to be won to retain your top dog position. Where else is the human's position other than the leader (dominant if you want to call it that) in the herd of 2 ie horse and owner. Where do you see the position of the horse and the human in relation to each other?
 

paddy555

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Because dominance theory comes from wolf packs. The top dog is called the Alpha. Its been completely disproved with dogs as basically dogs are not wolves and they also know we are not dogs. So to try and treat them as other dogs treat them does not make sense.
Its pretty much the same for horses in my opinion. We are not horses and should not try to use force to control them. Obviously a 8 stone person can not control a 500kg horse by force but they can by fear.... Try reading about the dominance theory. It quite complicated.
Whatever, hitting and kicking a pony out of temper is wrong. Thats the bottom line here.
please could we stick to horses. I know very little about dogs or even wolves but from what little I do know I cannot see how the 2 relate.
I have read about the dominance theory. I am just trying to apply it to horses IRL.

Everyone agrees kicking the pony out of temper was wrong. I cannot see what that has to do with dominance or any other theory. As I saw it she simply lost her temper.
 

Sandstone1

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dominance (I looked it up) means having power and influence over others. Nothing about aggressive or abusive. That is what we have over the horse.

I am struggling with your 2nd para. Every interaction has to be won to retain your top dog position. Where else is the human's position other than the leader (dominant if you want to call it that) in the herd of 2 ie horse and owner. Where do you see the position of the horse and the human in relation to each other?[/QUOTE
https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/behavior/debunking-the-alpha-dog-theory/
I know we are talking about Horses not dogs but as someone keeps going on about being The Alpha it is relevant I think.
 

honetpot

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dominance (I looked it up) means having power and influence over others. Nothing about aggressive or abusive. That is what we have over the horse.

I am struggling with your 2nd para. Every interaction has to be won to retain your top dog position. Where else is the human's position other than the leader (dominant if you want to call it that) in the herd of 2 ie horse and owner. Where do you see the position of the horse and the human in relation to each other?
I am not a behaviourist, but a wolf is a predator and the horse is a herd prey animal. The wolf pack works as a team to kill prey and share it in a dominance order, the equine herd is usually led and educated by older usually female members of the herd, and 'teaches' though showing what is safe, the fighting is usually done by males over breeding mares. Where there is a lot of food and water, there is very rarely any need for a mare to aggressive, she is usually dominant because her mother was dominant in the herd. Domesticated horses mainly squabble over food, if there is enough, it's very low level.
I have learned over the years you are usually teaching the horse that it is more advantageous to comply, because then they can get back to the serious business of eating, or their mates back in the field. They often learn more by being with a quiet, experienced older animal than any human, because we do not really have a full understanding of their communication system.
 

paddy555

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dominance (I looked it up) means having power and influence over others. Nothing about aggressive or abusive. That is what we have over the horse.

I am struggling with your 2nd para. Every interaction has to be won to retain your top dog position. Where else is the human's position other than the leader (dominant if you want to call it that) in the herd of 2 ie horse and owner. Where do you see the position of the horse and the human in relation to each other?[/QUOTE
https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/behavior/debunking-the-alpha-dog-theory/
I know we are talking about Horses not dogs but as someone keeps going on about being The Alpha it is relevant I think.

sorry quotes didn't work.

I read the link but I cannot see the link between wolf and horse behaviour.
The link talks about the alpha male and female keeping the pack of wolves in order and that has now been debunked (as I understand it) Do you not think there is an alpha/leader in a herd of horses? A dominant equine? remember dominant doesn't mean abusive or aggressive it simply means having power and influence over others.
 

Sandstone1

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dominance (I looked it up) means having power and influence over others. Nothing about aggressive or abusive. That is what we have over the horse.

I am struggling with your 2nd para. Every interaction has to be won to retain your top dog position. Where else is the human's position other than the leader (dominant if you want to call it that) in the herd of 2 ie horse and owner. Where do you see the position of the horse and the human in relation to each other?[/QUOTE
https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/behavior/debunking-the-alpha-dog-theory/
I know we are talking about Horses not dogs but as someone keeps going on about being The Alpha it is relevant I think.

sorry quotes didn't work.

I read the link but I cannot see the link between wolf and horse behaviour.
The link talks about the alpha male and female keeping the pack of wolves in order and that has now been debunked (as I understand it) Do you not think there is an alpha/leader in a herd of horses? A dominant equine? remember dominant doesn't mean abusive or aggressive it simply means having power and influence over others.
Yes there is certainly a herd leader in wild horses but we are not horses. Thats the whole point! I am fully aware what the word dominance means thank you.
Horses should trust us and punching and kicking them does not obtain trust.
 
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