Emily has a positive approach to challenging behaviour using the latest scientific principles. She will give you simple, safe, permanent solutions using habituation and positive reinforcement (reward based training) to help your horse to feel happy and calm. Emily is confidential, insured and will only work with your vets consent.
Emily has a holistic approach and looks at the animal as a whole. She will review the horse's management to ensure they feel emotionally and physically well. It is vital that we remove any stress from the animal's day to day life as this greatly impacts behaviour e.g. if they are not sleeping properly they will feel irritable and not be able to form memories appropriately and learn. Also, changing the environment changes the animal's context which makes it much easier to train a new response as context is one of the most important triggers for a behaviour e.g. you behave differently in a nightclub compared to a church.
Emily will find the underlying cause motivating the challenging behaviour and help you to understand why. From there we can change the emotions motivating them bringing about a permanent change. Emily trains using positive reinforcement. This involves setting the animal up to succeed and then rewarding them for good decisions with food or scratches. This changes the association to help them feel positive and so behave differently. Training in this way is enjoyable for both owner and animal. There will be no whips, flags on sticks or pressure halters. Behaviour Modification Programmes will be tailored to your animal. We will start with a foundation whereby the animal learns to learn and you learn to train (or Emily can do the practical training). Then we will go through each of the unwanted behaviours until all issues are resolved.
Benefits of using reward based training (positive reinforcement) are:
o It is the quickest and most effective way to train.
o The horses motivation is changed rather than just suppressing the behaviour which can cause other problems.
o They use their mind to problem solve and learn super fast.
o You ‘pay’ them for their hard work.
o They become more optimistic.
o Horses gain an enthusiasm for learning as they have a positive motivation, which creates a willingness to try.
o As they are never punished they become creative, curious, and confident in both themselves and you.
o Studies have found that animals trained using positive reinforcement have stronger, healthier brains.
Emily can help you and your horse with:
Standing still for injections and medical treatment.
Reducing stereotypic behaviours e.g. crib-biting, weaving, box-walking.
Fear of people, vehicles, etc.
Wearing a head-collar and leading.
Standing calmly while tied up.
Wearing a rug, fly mask etc.
Refusing to enter or leave the stable.
Horses who are 'shut down' and depressed.
Before the consultation Emily will need to phone your vet and get consent to consult as by law the animal is under the vet's care. Also, she needs to be aware of any medical problems which may affect the case.
The initial consultation will take about 2 to 3 hours. Emily will need to see your horse in their normal environment. Emily will ask you questions and take a history of your horse. With this information she can make an informed assessment of what the issues are and explain to you why the unwanted behaviours are occurring. Finally, she will explain your plan of action and give you specific Behaviour Modification Programmes to start training.
The prognosis will vary with each case. Most owners will see positive changes the same day, but other issues may take months to totally resolve. It is worth taking the time to support the horse in making long term change to avoid the problem recurring in the future which can happen with 'quick fix training'.
The initial consultation costs £35 an hour and will take 2 - 3 hours. The fee includes:
o Time on the phone to Emily or support via email.
o A personalised report given to you during the consultation detailing why your animal is displaying unwanted behaviours and the plan of action of how we move forward.
o Behaviour Modification Programmes tailored to your specific situation.
o A bumbag for training (if appropriate).
Travel is charged at £5 per hour's driving from Wanstead, East London, E11. So for example, if you live an hour away it's 2 hours there and back so £10 travel expenses. This cost can be shared with others if I have cases in a similar area. The furthest that Emily will travel is 1 hour away.
Follow up consultations may be needed depending on the problem. It is completely up to you how much practical support you would like. Follow up consultations cost £35 per hour.
Please check your animal’s insurance policy as the fees may be recoverable from them.