Monday, December 13, 2010

35. Targeting Level 5

Goal: Nose targets 3 objects and foot targets  2 objects that horse showed some fear of on one cue

Select several objects that you horse has shown some minor fear of in the past.
Some examples:
*plastic grocery bag
*lightweight blanket that moves in the wind
*noisy jacket
*piece of plywood
*garden hose
*pipe or narrow pole
*puddle of water
*narrow stream

Shape your horse to interact with one object that he has shown mild fear of. C/t for looking, sniffing or touching any part of the object. Select for only nose touches, not bites. When he is consistently offering a nose touch to the object, add the cue. 

Repeat with many objects. Increase the level of difficulty as he gains experience by choosing objects he has more fear of.
Introduce novel objects he may never have seen.
Choose objects that make a sound.

Repeat the process by laying several of the same objects on the ground (one at a time) and shape him to foot target them, then later walk over them (at liberty so it is all the horse’s choice). This builds confidence in walking over fearful things. Obtain larger pieces of the smaller objects (sheets or plastic, large tarps, sheet of plywood etc) and shape him to foot target and walk over these.

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