By BHB Staff
This article reviews the top 10 best horse behavior books available online.
If you’ve ever worked with horses, you know that it’s both an art and a science. No matter what method you use, it’s always helpful to educate yourself. That’s where horse training books come in. By reading about the ways that other trainers manage their horses, you can get new ideas to use in your own practice. The best part? With so many different options, there’s a book for everyone. Whether you’re interested in practical guides or scientific studies, it’s easy to find literature to add to your training library.
1. Horses in Translation
If you’ve ever wished you and your horse could speak the same language, Horses in Translation might be what you’re looking for. Written by trainer Sharon Wilsie, this book examines the different ways that horses communicate with each other — then, it teaches you how to use some of the same methods. Wilsie also provides a variety of stories that illustrate the ways you can use “horse speak” to solve specific training problems.
2. How to Think Like A Horse
An important part of horse training is figuring out what makes your animals tick. That’s where How to Think Like a Horse comes in. This handy text lays out different horse behaviors and their underlying causes; after reading it, you may find it easier to spot patterns and understand why your horse is acting the way he does. The author covers everything from routines to smells and survival instincts, giving you a broad education in equine reactions.
3. The Mind of the Horse
Do you like to infuse your training methods with scientific research? The Mind of the Horse is sure to be an interesting read. The author, neuroscientist Michel-Antoine Leblanc, uses anatomy, experimentation, and neurophysiology to explain how horses perceive the world. With its relatable language and easily understandable methods, this book is accessible whether you’re a scientist or a horse enthusiast.
4. From the Horse’s Point of View
If you’ve spent any time around horses, you know that they have their own set of communication cues and behavioral traits. From the Horse’s Point of View collects this information into a single book, creating a handy resource for riders and trainers. In the pages, you’ll discover ways to improve communication with your horse, figure out his unique personality, and discover what nonverbal cues he uses to get his point across. After employing the strategies in the book, you may find it easier to build a strong, loving relationship.
5. The Ultimate Horse Behavior and Training Book
Just getting started with horse training? The Ultimate Horse Behavior and Training Book is a must-read. This is a practical instructional guide that walks you through the training process. It provides simple, clear directions to help you solve a wide range of issues, from dealing with stubborn horses to identifying possible health conditions. Keep it in your barn as a quick reference, or study it in depth before you start training.
6. Horse Speak: An Equine-Human Translation Guide
A big part of training is learning how to communicate effectively with different horses. If you’re not sure where to start, Horse Speak can help. This manual introduces you to the ways that horses communicate — then, it takes things a step farther and teaches you how to use these methods to improve your own interactions. From breath to intensity regulation, these practical strategies can take your sessions to the next level.
7. Behavioral Issues in Horses: Why Do They Do That?
Have you ever been frustrated by the things your horse does? Behavioral Issues in Horses might be the solution you need. This book discusses common behavioral problems, such as rearing, kicking, and biting. For each issue, author Nicole Brickner talks about the reasons that your horse might be acting out — pain, fear, and habit, for example. Finally, she shows you different ways that you can address and solve the problem based on the most likely cause.
8. The Horse Behavior Problem Solver
Get answers to all of your horse questions in The Horse Behavior Problem Solver. Written in a question-and-answer format, this book goes over all of the common issues that trainers encounter on a daily basis. Wondering how to make vet visits less stressful? Stuck for ways to break a bad habit? This book has your back. With its simple language and practical solutions, this is a great book for any trainer.
9. Horse Behaviour: Interpreting Body Language and Communication
In Horse Behaviour: Interpreting Body Language and Communication, author Barbara Schoning teaches readers how to read their horse’s cues. Schoning covers topics ranging from subtle patterns of behavior to body language cues, giving you a broad education in horse communication. After you finish the book, you’ll have a set of things to look for in your own horses; that way, you can learn his unique language and figure out how to work with him more effectively.
10. Horse Behaviour Exposed
There are plenty of different horse-training methods; if you like a balanced approach, Horse Behaviour Exposed might be right up your alley. This book falls somewhere in between rigid, militaristic training and super-gentle techniques — that way, you can use it in a wide range of situations. We love the practical nature of the book; from checklists to graphs, it walks you through an easy-to-follow process.
Are you just getting started with horse training? Are you dealing with a particularly difficult case? No matter what your situation, these great books can help you break through barriers and build a successful training practice.