The Power of the Pointy Finger

I had the experience of watching Sharon in person at a clinic near Bend, Oregon. She was working with two horses in a large arena who were owned by a participant in the clinic.

One horse was calm and very receptive and responsive while the other was highly nervous, anxious, and had her attention divided between all the distractions of the audience and looking for reassurance from the other horse.

While Sharon was working with the nervous horse to establish a connection, the calm horse kept coming up into their space either for some of Sharon’s attention or to reassure the nervous horse. I couldn’t believe what I saw when Sharon (who was must shorter than either of the horses) had the lead line of the nervous horse in her left hand with no pressure, and pointed the finger of her right hand at the calm horse over the top of the back of the nervous horse. The calm horse backed off and quit invading their space. Just a look and a pointed finger over the top of an agitated horse showed Sharon “speak horse” and have control of both of them. WOW!!!!

I felt the joy of a similar experience with my two horses. My mare is bossy and always makes my gelding yield to her whims. She especially insists on being the first one led out of the pasture to go to her stall in the barn. To avoid the likelihood of Sunshine going after Jazz to get him to back away from the gate, I normally take Sunshine out first. One day she was quite a ways off in the pasture, but Jazz was already at the gate. I decided I could halter him and get him through the gate before she got too close….wrong… She came running up and Jazz started dancing around nervously anticipating that she would go after him. I gave her “the look” and the “pointed finger” over the top of Jazz’s back, and Sunshine backed off respectfully and I got Jazz through the gate with no problem. WOW!!!!!! I can “speak horse” too.

Sherrie K