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The Listening Lounge


Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed 300 lessons completed 350 lessons completed 400 lessons completed 450 lessons completed 500 lessons completed 550 lessons completed 600 lessons completed

Hi all,

I was thinking maybe we could have even more fun here if we had a chance to introduce ourselves. (Maybe it would also mean that we can avoid some misunderstandings?)
So how about if we start a thread were we can come in and say Hello, and share a bit of information on our backgrounds with horses? :)
I don't know if you will feel it's good idea, but I will at least start, and see if anyone follows. (This could become awkward! *LOL* )
Ok, here goes!
I'm Kicki, I'm a teacher, and I live in the countryside in Sweden.
I'm going to be 50 next year (2012) and have been into horses for 40 of those years; riding and competing in both show jumping, dressage and long distance. I've also spent some time riding Western style.
I've worked part time as a riding teacher both at summer camps and riding schools.
10 years ago I qualified for judging dressage classes up to Regional levels.
I've also written a compendium on color genetics in horses.
In 1996 I bought my first own horse, a SWB mare born 1990, to train and compete in dressage, and 2008 I had a foal out of her.
On the NH-side of things, aside from two years here at the Funiversity, I have read Monty's books, but only seen him live once.
I have been to some clinics in NH with both my horses, and I'm trying to use Monty's principles when working with my horses, but I'm a novice in every way. *LOL*
Actually, coming here was more or less a Christmas gift to myself and my youngster, and I hope to learn as much as possible so I can continue to evolve as a horse person, and become good enough at this that other people will be convince/influenced in turn to use the methods of Monty Roberts.
OK, now it is your turn! :) :) :)

Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed 300 lessons completed

All right here goes. (BUT DO I HAVE TO TELL MY AGE)

Anyway, I have had several different occupations. I love to attend school, I usually go to college every three years to take new classes.

I have done so many things with my life from working in a restaurant, while working my way through college, to working in law.

I have been a teacher of English, as a second language.
I have trained as a paramedic.
I have had the priveledge of working with the deaf and helping them to improve their lives.
I volunteer on a weekly basis.
I am certified to operate large machinery.
I have taken 9 years of cooking and have taught that, as well.
I have also had the priveledge of working with a lawyer who works solely for the physically and mentally challenaged. What we do is, write up special trusts for them, they are called Henson Trusts and can be over 200 pages long. They cannot be broken in any way. I love my work.
I specialize in different craft work. I use several different mediums. I do consignment work. People will approach me and ask can you?? And I ask the questions and try my best to give them what they desire. I have had shows displaying my work and they are sold out very quickly. I have a few pieces of my work displayed on my facebook account, for my sister to see. Usually my work is out there, in the sence of a bit unusal but my husband is more confential and I paint for him now and then.
I am a registered massage therapist and make really good money at that.
I rescue animals, wild and domestic and find new homes for them or help them get back into the wild. Last summer we had orphaned skunks in our yard and I called the rescue center, asked what needed to be done to help them survive, without taming them too much and by fall they were ready to be on their own. One would even eat out of my hand, we called her Daisy.
I own a Commercial cleaning business.
I have my own research business, Arberservices, and will research just about anything for most companies.
I have written several childrens books and am now in the process of writting a book on horses.
I also am a trouble shooter, if a business is having problems, they call me, I come in, observe for a while, interview the staff, find out their strenghts and weaknesses and place them in the best position for their qualifications.
I am an Business Adminstator, mostly for lawyers. I run their companies and get them on their feet and then hire a manager, train them and I'm on my way.
My greatest love is horses. I was raised for 6 months every year on my eldest sister's franch, (farm/ranch). It was a working farm, cattle (over 500 head) and cows ( over 250, for milking). They had 2,300 acres of farmland that had to be worked every day.
We started our days at 4AM and worked until the sun set.
Fortunately we had milking machines, which had to be sterilized twice a day. The cattle also had to have their teats sterilized as well and some did not like this.
Our horses were for working and if they did not do their job, they were sold, so one did not get too attached.
I was on a horse while still in diapers and owned my first pony when I was 3, a Shetland named Lady.
My second pony was a paint named Patches and a Quarterhorse called Joe Louis.
We had farm hands that looked after the horses, when we needed one we would call down to the barn ask for the horse and ask for it to be tacked up.
I never had to really learn how to look afer a horse but my desire was there, it was just frowned upon by my family that I would desire to get dirty cleaning up after a horse.
One requirement was you had to know how to handle a horse, from a very early age, your life could depend on it.
When cutting long horn cattle you stayed on the back of your horse, no matter what.
We owned the islands in the Saint John river and use to swimm the cattle across for the summer months and swim them back in the fall. By this time they were wild and not use to humans at all, therefore very unpredictable.
They wouldn't hesitate to charge a large horse so you had to know what you were doing.
My brother-in-law had his degree in husbandardy and taught me everything I know about farming and anamials. He wanted me safe and taught me how to ride like the wind.
I didn't get into actually training green horses until I got married and bought my first one. I would not allow myself to become attached because they were going to be sold.
They had to be put through everything possible so they would be just about bomb proff.
This young mare I have resucued is the first real challenge I have had. Her background is unstable and she is very immature and therefore a true challenge but I love challenagages.
I have survived cancer three times. Lost a son to a tragic death and both of my sisters have died from cancer as well as my mother.
I have almost lost my life in a car accident and had to learn everything all over again.
I am a survior, I do not give up easily and am determined to succeed.
There's more to tell but I have taken up too much space as it is.
Now it's your turn,

Miriam (Holland&Germany)
Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed 300 lessons completed 350 lessons completed 400 lessons completed 450 lessons completed 500 lessons completed 550 lessons completed 600 lessons completed 650 lessons completed

There I go, it seems to be my turn!
I was born in Amsterdam, Holland 58 years ago, had very good riding lessons between the age of 9-12. Life took a different curve, so horses didn't come back into my life until much later. I moved to Hamburg, Germany with my husband and our first daughter. Here I started riding again and have shared horses eversince, never owning one myself, but being full responsible for the ones I took care of.
I'm a jewelry designer, although I stopped working in this profession when my second pregnancy gave me twingirls. A year after their birth and quite a lot of complications, I saw my first Monty video, BBC about Monty working with the Queen's horses. I remember tears coming to my eyes and recognizing a method I definately wanted to learn. Of course I read all there was from and about Monty's work.
In 1999 I fulfilled this wish and went to Flag is up Farms the first time for what was called then a "clinic", no courses were given yet. In 2002 I did a Join-up/Follow-up course near Hamburg with Andrea Kutsch.
Every summer my family spends the schoolholidays at a breedingfarm in Italy, so here I could start experimenting with what I had learned from the books, videos and courses I had taken so far.
In 2010 I flew over to California again for my Introductory Course, the exam I did in April 2011, and stayed for the Advanced course.
I helped out as a volunteer at two of Monty's demos in Marbach, Germany.
This is my state right now, I help some people with their horses and their longlining.
I am very fortunate to have found a breeder of Arabs, not too far from where I live, so soon I can start sending in videos on young and untouched horses, that might take me to the Advanced exam someday.
Who's next?!

Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed

Compared to you two I have done very little so far. I am 18 and live in Minnesota. I am also a life long animal lover!

I have learned many skills over the years growing up with a do-it-yourself father. I learned the basics of car repair such as replacing spark plugs, changing the oil, replacing break pads, and more. I was in the process of rebuilding the engine for my little ford truck but had to leave it behind when we moved.

I have also become very good at home repair/remodel/construction. I have helped my dad put up walls, run electricity, and put in windows in our old garage in Washington. When we moved to MN we had to redo the roof on the garage. In addition our new house is a fixer upper and right now we are preparing to put up sheet rock in my sisters room. Its all very fun except I had awful luck with plumbing, I guess its just very easy to panic when its raining inside the house.

Since I was young my family liked to travel a lot. We would take a road trip to California every summer so visit family. I have been to San Francisco, LA, Las Vegas, Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Mt. St. Helen's lava tube caves, Mall of America,Yellowstone, Victoria up in Canada, and Mexico and that's just to name a few. I really like to travel, going to a different country is even better.

Before I moved and got my horses I volunteered at a therapeutic ridding center for a while. It was fun but I was a little sad to see that these particular horses did not like their job. My good and bad experiences here got the ball rolling for me. I started learning more about horse care and training, just loving horses was no longer enough.

I discovered Monty about 2 or 3 yrs ago thru his book "The Man Who Listens to Horses". This was during the time that I was learning as much as I could about horses. Monty's methods just stuck to me and I have been learning from him ever since. This sub for the uni was my 18'th birthday gift!

I got my first horses almost a year ago. I know that first time horse owners should not take on babies to start out, I know the reasons and I agree. I still made a decision to get young horses, quite honestly I wanted to be the one to train my horse, I wanted them to grow up with me and build a strong bond. So a year ago I bought a yearling(Rowen) and a 2 yr old(Almira), and a green broke 5 yr old(Gabriel). I was not intending to buy 3 horses, but things just worked out that way. I have not regretted the choice I made, they have taught me so much and brought more meaning to my life.

I will be taking the into course next month! I am very exited. I plan on taking the advanced course and hopefully getting the internship in the future. I always knew that I would be working with horses, and I always have a way of making things that I am passionate about happen, I am very happy that it is all working out.

I really enjoy this forum(you guys are great!) and I hope that I will be able to continue my membership for a long time. It will be nice to get to know a bit more about you all, I think this was a great idea.


May - Holland
Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed

Oké here I go.

I am May and I am living in Holland and I am 54 years (ha... I am brave).
The first 48 years I lived in the west of Holland near Amsterdam, where I was born. Now I live in the east of Holland, where it is more quiet and peacefull. Holland is a very small country, to go by car from the west to the east it takes 2 hours and from north to south I think about 4/5 hours.
I had to turn my life upside down first, to follow my hart. I always wished to move to the east of Holland or Great Britain (Great Britain was to expensive at that time for me on my own). I don't know why I wanted to go to the east, but it was a strong feeling. I am living here now for 6 years.
I have no family, no children, but I have very kind husband and parents in law who are living on a farm. I have three very good ladyfriends, one in England who I know now for 35 years, one in India, Delhi, also for 35 years and one in the west of Holland I know for 25 years. They are like sisters for me.
I have 1 dog, black labrador retriever called Raisa, 1 cat, tortoise (shell), called Pebbles, I rescued her, 1 parrot called Rose also rescued, birds outside in a large cache and 5 guinea-pigs AND NO HORSE(sniffle).I don't have to tell you, that I love all my animals.
I gave lessons to people with dogs (puppies) dogtraining and agillity.

I am a teacher (primary school), beautician and pedicure.
I teached for a few years but it was very difficult to get a job so I started the training for being a beautician/pedicure.
I worked first, in between, in a hospital in the administration office.
Then I worked in a beautysalon annex hairdresser.
After 2 years working there, I started my own beautysalon and worked day and night for twenty years.
When I moved to the east I stopped my practice in the west and started it here but then for a few people.
I play flute and gave private lessons.
I like to sing, but I am not a professional, just for fun.
I sang in my younger years, ahum..., in a children choire for a children television program.
I am very creative. I love to work with my hands, like making handmade cards, put little houses together for my husbands hobby miniature trains and more creative handmade things. I love gardening (my husband bought me last year a greenhouse for my birthday), so this summer we had our first tomato's and cucumbers, peppers and even melon from the greenhouse.
I love to cook, I am a fan of Delia Smith's, an English cooking lady.
Reading, learning, all what is possible to develope myself.
I like wachting films, detectives, nature/scenery.
I have humor and love to let other people get a smile on there faces.

I had a lot of operations and the first was when I was 6 years old, hartoperation.
I had all silly things like breaking 8 years ago two wrists in one time (was very complicated broken).
I worked hard to get back in my work, but that was quiet difficult. But with a lot of incouragement and belief in myself, I can use my wrists now as before.
I had a burn-out and are still recovering from that. But it is the last bit now, so thumbs up.
I am a High Sensitive Person and have ADD, (what I know now for 3 years).
I am writing a book now about my experiences with ADD.
Sometimes I write short funny stories for children about animals.
I belief in the universe and karma. I react a lot by following my intuition.
I can feel things from a distance, I can also crash a computer without touching it (makes my husband mad haha).
And from my 18th I always wished to be with horses.
It took me many many years, untill 6 month ago, to be with them and learn from them, but I reached my goal. Let's say it is the time now for me..
I love to be with them and think it is healing to be with them.
I have got Renske and Luuk and Senna as my, lets say, addoption horses. I go to them as much as I can. I have riding lessons and after falling off Renske a few month ago I sat yesterday back in the saddle and did just two circles in the sandschool, walking. I was crying afterwords, so happy I was.
I am happy that I found Monty's website and be in contact with you to talk about horses and learn more, also from the lessons, they are perfect.
I am going to England the end of Oct. to see Monty life on the second of Nov. in Okehampton/Devon.
I do follenteering work half a day per week in a kennel for dogs and cat's
I help people with everything I can to help them with.
And I am planning to start a business with my husband.
That will be a nursing place for (old) horses who can't stay at home anymore, but the owner doesn't want to sell her/his horse. Also do we want to invite children and older people to come and help us. To be there and enjoy there time with the horses. Children with a "problem" and older people, because otherwise they are sitting behind the geraniums. Children and older people are matching quiet easy, if you understand what I mean.
I have a goal and I will follow my path. If it isn't straight forward then through a sideway, but I will reach my goal and it will succeed. I am like a bullterier I don't give up untill I have reached my goal. To be clear I don't bite!!!
I am a believer, a surviver (I had also very bad years). If I go for something I go for 200%. I am also a dreamer, sometimes sitting on my pink cloud. I am born in March so Pisches, they are dreamers ha.
I am very glad and happy with the life I am living now.
I am never going back to the west of Holland, this is the place I will stay for the rest of my live,(I think now, you never know, maybe I am going one day to Timboektoe).
I can go on and on, but I think it is your turn now.....

Rudi - Pratteln, Switzerland
Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed 300 lessons completed 350 lessons completed 400 lessons completed 450 lessons completed 500 lessons completed 550 lessons completed 600 lessons completed

Dear Kicki, good idea.
I am born in 1950, our daughter has been with horses since she was 7 years old and has her own horse since 14 years. Some years ago she infected me with her passion. After some years of riding lessons I got interested in Monty's ideas and did the introductory course in France (Johan Hofmans). I started my practical experience in a small barn. Now I am lucky to have the opportunity to work in a big barn with a lot of horses that are trained for show jumping. I am very busy in my profession as a pediatric surgeon, trying to find as much time as possible for horses. I intend to retire from work next year.


I find it very difficult to introduce myself, because I am not sure if it really helps to understand each other better. Normally one does a selection of information to pass through. It is a picture we like other to have from us. Still I can give it a try.
I from Germany, but left when I was 21. My parents got the first horse, when I was 4. I started the very classical way (at least for germans) (“voltigieren”) horseback acrobatics. Than the riding school, than single lessons on the own horse (dressage and horse jumping). They would not teach anything about handling a horse on the ground.
As I said, I left Germany when I was 21 to go to Pakistan, where I stayed almost for 3 ½ years. Different culture, different religion, different …....everything. From there I went to Italy with my husband whom I met in Pakistan. After Italy (my husband is Italian) we went with our little daughter to Kenya/Nakuru, where we remained for 2 years and also had my son who was born in Nairobi. After Kenya we moved back to Italy for 6 month and than to Colombia/Bucaramanga. After 3 ½ years (seems a magic number) I decided to leave for several reasons (safety ecc.) and got back to Italy, where I finally got stable and bouhgt one, than two horses, and took care for the ones of a friend too. Now I have only one horse and a lovely donkey.
During all the period of traveling around, where ever I smelled horses, I had to search for them until I found them.
In Colombia/Bucaramanga I had worked in a private club giving lessons to children and adults and trained also horses for the “carabineros “, military police. Their methods where not very gentile, as you can imagine, and they did not like to be criticized by a young german woman,so I avoided any criticism and tried to work, where they could not see me.
Now my children are big, I have plenty of time to spend with the rest of the family, that's what they are (horses, donkeys, dogs, cat, chicken).
I didn't talk about work and jobs, because I feel, that this place should be an island of carefreeness.

Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed

OK I am with cristina on this. Being probably the oldest one (67) it would take to long to give a time line. My grandfather raised Tennessee Walker when I was small. I loved being in the barn with them and touching them, but he would not let me get on them. They were prize show horses and quite hot blooded. My grandfather being an ignorant SOB was very harsh on his horses until one day they rebelled and put him on the ground. He was about my age when that happened and so my grandmother said that was the last time he was to get on the horses. Don't know what happened to them. I was in Iraq in 1957 and would ride a friend of the families Arabian. I did not know every much about riding but I learned enough that I rode every day. When I was in my thirties I get I was missing something, which was a horse. Bought a quarter horse that had been a show horse but was very head shy because her owner would constantly tap her on the head so she would keep her head down. The horse also had arthritis in her hock. After riding her for a year, letting her be a horse and never touching her on the head she became a wonderful trail horse. My farrier and vet fixed her feet so she was pain free when walking trotting or cantering.
I had a back injury and after surgery I was told I could no longer ride so I donated her to a teaching school.
For twenty years I did not ride, although I did cheat a couple of times, until my friends convinced me to ride one of their Peruvian Paso. The rest is history. My wife said that I came home with the biggest smile on my face and when I told her why she told me to go for it and get a horse. A plus to riding a Peruvian Paso is that it keeps my back in shape and flexible. About four months ago my back became such a problem that the doctors wanted to fuse my spine and then said it still my hurt. I told my wife that I was going to ride my horse everyday until my back was OK. Two weeks later and everything was good.
Horses have given me so much more than I could ever give them both physically and emotionally. Monty has always been an inspiration to me ever since I saw the documentary on Shy Boy.

So I rambled.

Gen (Queensland, Australia)
Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed

Hello Kicki, I think this is a good idea. Its been great to read about everyone who has posted already.
I was born in a small country town in Queensland, and I am 37 years old. My husband and I have two daughters.
I have always loved horses for as long as I can remember, and used to love going to my Uncle's place and to other friends of the family who had them.
One of my Uncles bought me my first horse and her name was Dolly. She was a very pretty bay mare, and she was an absolute terror. She put me in hospital so many times because every time I fell off, I seemed to land on my head. The vet said that she had been drugged to make her look quiet. After about 2 years of struggling with Dolly, my Uncle bought me another pony named Pinky, who was very quiet which allowed me to gain some confidence and skill. Eventually I managed to ride Dolly reasonably well with help from a local lady, but I often wonder how different things would have been if I knew then, what I know now.
When I was in my late teens and early 20's, I enjoyed playing Polocross, Barrel Racing and Dressage with my horses. When I got married, my husband made me get rid of my horses which was very upsetting to say the least.
Together we ran a very successful business for 10 years, for which I won a number of management awards. When we sold it in 2009, I told my husband that I was getting another horse and that was that.
I purchased a Hollywood Return Quarter Horse called Ranger. He is a great horse. Getting back into horses has been difficult for me as I have old back injuries from my days with Dolly and being out of the saddle for 10 years caused me to allow myself to become very unfit which now makes riding very painful for me at times. The pain wasn't so bad when I was fit.
I came across Monty Roberts when we purchased a horse for our daughters. His name was Robbie. I wasn't with my husband when he picked the horse, and I said to him "do not bring home a horse that will not load on the float (trailer)". Anyway, he did. One day I wanted Robbie to get on the float and he refused. I was so angry because I knew how most people would fix that problem, and I just didn't want to go there. I put Robbie back in his yard and left him at home. We went to our Barrel Race where I told a friend what had happened and that I didn't know what to do about it. She suggested Monty Robert's Fix Up DVD and told me to get a Dually Halter. We got the DVD and the Halter along with the Join-Up and Follow-Up DVDs and put our understanding of what we had seen into practice and to our relief - it worked! Robbie is a great traveller now.
I had no intention of purchasing any other horses, but we found Renacer inches away from death and bought him home. He is young, and I have started him using the Monty Roberts way to the best of my ability and understanding at this time. We purchased the two Quarter Horse mares we have now because they just "appeared" in front of us, so we are going to breed a couple of horses for ourselves. I really like studying the blood lines and genetics.
I have just completed my Intro Course, and hope to become an Instructor because I feel so passionately that these methods need to be promoted as much as possible to others.
I am currently a Business Development Manager in an Exploration Drilling Company, and hope to be able to combine my business experience with my passion for horses if I am able to become an Instructor, so that I can deliver the horsemanship related courses and the corporate training programs as well. I also recognise that this goal may not happen, but that's what I'm working towards.
I have never seen Monty Roberts in person at a demonstration, but I hope to one day :-)
Kind regards,

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed

Hi all - Huge reservations about this but I have enjoyed everyone else's stories. I have tried to summarise but was hard. It is still far too lengthy so apologies for that.
• Seems we are competing on age Dennis!
• Grew up on a rough, mountainous, isolated, merino sheep/cattle property in northern NSW, Australia
• Eldest sister (5 years older) started me off riding on our pet angora goat. Progressed to riding my father's and sister's horses. Didn't own a horse of my own - had no formal lessons just did as my sister told me. Rode bare back except for mustering. My sister was "gang-ho" on horses, went to pony club and stayed with horses all her life. Runs a successful riding school and daughter has been in the Australian Squad - I have learnt a bit from her.
• Did schooling via correspondence until 15. Spent days helping my father out on the property and did my lessons in evenings. By 15 I could - crutch/drench sheep, shoe, muster rough paddocks alone with sheep dogs, shoot and trap rabbits, fence, help with branding calves etc. Loved the property and befriended all the animals. Better with animals than people!!
• Left home at 18
• At 20 was thrown off a young horse onto a bitumen road, no helmet, cracked my skull and had concussion.
• Spent 25 years as a full time working, suburban Mum. Rode occasionally at riding schools. One year rode each Friday with a group of teenage school boys - was always given the worst horse.
• 1987 purchased our first horse - a share horse with my daughter. A beautiful 15.3 Standard Bred X QH. Truly marvellous horse who loved to jump. He passed away in my arms aged 29 and is buried here.
• 1989 purchased 5 acres on the outskirts of Melbourne - current home. Started accumulating horses, took dressage lesson, attended numerous horsey clinics. Volunteered to help local well known breaker friend muck out stables etc when injured. Only lasted a few days - didn't know he was a traditional breaker using methods similar to Monty's Dad. No wonder the owners were not allowed on the property! Beautiful young horses starved for days prior to breaking then back legs tied around neck with rough ropes for hours which rubbed their flesh off their legs as they stumbled and fell around in their small bare paddocks. Luckily I didn't witness any breaking but saw enough brutality - haven't spoken to that family since.
• In 1999 suspend my horsey activities and work in Melbourne. Returned to the family property after 36 years to help aged parents in an impossible situation. Demented father under a protective commissioner, and mother had moved out after pampering him for 60 years. The protective commissioner intended selling the property, Dad's loved animals and placing Dad in a dementia unit. Helped out for four years driving to and fro from Melbourne - about 1,500 km. When property was sold I returned to Melbourne with a quarter horse, kelpie dog and two poddy calves. Purchased 200 acres of beautiful mountainous country and valley on the Mitta Mitta River in northern Victoria for myself, my kelpie and my poddies. Visit it fortnightly to tend my herd of 20 cattle.
• Retired from work 2 years ago to break in Tricka, ride more, enjoy my property and cattle and grandchildren before I too get dementia. Now taking dressage lessons weekly, riding Tricka at least twice a week and trying to ride my others as often as possible. Previously read "The Horse Whisperer" and "Shy Boy" but only discovered Monty Robert's Uni last January. I have always loved animals and had repour with them but Monty has helped me understand why and has taught me so much.
• Current horses in order of acquisition:
1. Pie - a totally terrorised, brutalised Palomino. Purchased as a 3 year old in 1994 out of kindness. She has taught me so much! Initially rode her for 2 years - very scary on roads - but then a vet tried to improve her front knee joint, hit her cartilage and made her unrideable. Nursed her better but she remained too lame to ride. She gave me Tricka five years ago.
2. Ouyen a beautiful warm blood with impressive breeding. Purchased as 2 year old from a Police Auction. She was my dream horse. A policewoman broke her in. On Ouyen and I dreamed of improving on my dressage and competing. She was working beautifully when I abandoned her training to help my parents. In my absence Ouyen developed lameness which the vets could not cure - her pastern was too wide causing pain with excessive movement of the front hoof on sloping ground or in circles. No good for breeding so no easy solution. She is now on a 11 acre flat paddock with Pie and Nicky. Still rideable.
3. Uggs a registered quarter horse purchased over the phone to help with the cattle while helping my parents. Broken in by a Monty Robert's type trainer - promised to be really quiet and suitable for my needs. Trainer only had him for a fortnight. Not too sure about the training - couldn't look at him at all when I first had him - had to back up. His papers showed he wasn't even 3 and was gelded late. I laughed when he came out of transport truck - a funny little fellow - very scruffy, large wormy gut and little thin legs and only about 14 hands high so named him Uggly. He was extremely docile to ride until I worm dosed him and my Dad fed him lucerne hay in my absences. He quickly grew into a very handsome, very fast and lively 15 hand quarter horse who was brilliant with the cattle. All I had to do was stay on. He would buck like crazy on the lunge but was OK once I was on so I gave up lunging. The stock saddle I was using was also far too small for him. A rough neighbour once terrorised him in my absence - ear twitch, back leg tie around his neck etc - scared him for life. Told to sell him as a buck jumper but I brought him to Melbourne. He was a great jumper. He is my favourite as he is personality plus. He lives with me, Tricka and Chester with post and rail fences.
4. Nicky owned by a young neighbour. Given to me to care for 10 years ago when she developed seedy toe. Beautiful liver chestnut Australian stock horse, bomb proof but goes crazy when with more than one other horse or when someone tries to hold her in or clamps their legs on. Western ridden and obviously raced in the past. Perfect for riding loose reined on the roads.
5. Tricka (Trick or Treat), Pie's foal born on Holloween 2006, horse in my photo. Broken in by me and now doing well. She is amazing and so smart and definitely the best horse I have.
6. Chester - 9 hands high, 9 year old, very quiet but cheeky shetland purchased early this year for my grandchildren.

renjaho - Hamburg, Germany
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Hi everybody!
Kicki, this is such a wonderful idea, maybe it would even be good to have the opportunity to take a look at other accounts, like in facebook, for example.
So, here is my story:
My name is Jasmin Hochfeld, I am 19 years old and living in Hamburg, Germany. I have the Swedish passport, too, my grandma (mormor - Kicki knows what is meant) was born in Dalarna, but married a German. I go to Sweden every summer for two to three weeks of vacation/holiday and am practising my language skills and visiting nature up there - I LOVE IT!!!
I have now ten years of experience with horses, taught myself riding (had only few lessons, my riding teacher was not a real teacher). In 2007 I read Monty's firt book, in April 2008 I saw him at a demonstration here in Hamburg. This wonderful evening changed my life, I said to my parents: "I want to quit riding, because I do no longer want to see my "riding teacher" whipping her horses!" Half a year later I did so. I started teaching myself Monty's methods and thought I was good, but in fact it took me nearly one year to do my first real Join-Up - and the only reason that I got it right was Monty opening this Uni and me watching the lessons about how to do Join-Up. For the next year I practised everything new that came up on the Uni, then the horse that I was working with got very sick in his forelegs, especially the hoofs. I was no more able to continue my work, and only about two weeks ago I quit my riding partnership.
In August this year I went to California for ten days to attend Monty's "Special Training Clinic 2011" and found wonderful friends all over the world - and I am still having e-mail contact with them on a regular base. It was a fantistic experience, and me and a friend had to squeeze each other several times every day to find out that we were not just dreaming!
Last Saturday I started my traineeship at college. I am going to be a non-mediacal practitioner, physiotherapist and chiropractor for horses, dogs and cats.
At the end of this month I will do my Introductory Course here in Germany, Anna Kerckhoff de Sacchi is going to be my teacher.
In about two weeks I will start taking my first riding classes in western style, and there are some horses I am allowed to work with for my studies at home to complete my Intro.
So, that was my story - who is next!?

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Anyone else going to contribute?? Great postings

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Hi all,

Kicki i too think this is a great idea! I have enjoyed reading everyones stories.

So here is mine.....

My name is Janelle, I am from Australia...there are a few of us i see!!

I am 29 years old and i am a full time mum. I have no degrees, have only ever worked in a supermarket and have never had the privilage to work in the horse industry. I have never done any competetive riding or had formal lessons. But i think i am an ok horsewoman in spite of that!

I have been fascinated with horses from a very early age. My dad bought me my first horse book called The Complete book Of Riding at about age 7 and i can remember poring over every page over and over. We lived in town, my parents were separated but both lived in the city so i had no oportunity to ride. At age 10 my mum and stepdad moved to the country.So i nagged and nagged to get a pony and finally when i was 11 i got a pony for christmas. Her name was Goldie, She was a welsh mountain/arab cross 14.2 hh and was a fat temperamental thing! but oh i loved her from the moment i saw her! after only a year or so my mum and stepdad separated and i moved back to the city. I was gutted as i thought this meant i had to leave behind my beloved Goldie. Lucky for me my mum had some friends with land so we agisted her there and i got to ride every day after school. Goldie became my best friend. My life was so all over the place that i needed her to be my stability...and she became that. Eventually my dad bought a 50 acre farmlet in the mountains and we moved Goldie there to see out her days. My dad bought a black and white stock horse and we would go riding every weekend. It was bliss. Goldie died in my arms of colic at the age of 24. We had 5 years together. A year later i bought an off the track thouroughbred called Stop Gap. He was a 16hh mountain of a horse! A far cry from my little goldie! It was while i owned Stop that i came across Monty Roberts :-) I found the book The Horses In My Life at a book shop and after reading that i bought The Man Who Listens To horses. While reading his account of join up i realised that i had witnessed my TB trying to communicate with me and i had never noticed! So i got a dvd and watched how to do join up and thought i'd give it a go. I achieved join up with my stop within 5 minutes and almost cried! The feeling of being able to speak his language was a huge emotion for me. Monty's methods changed my relationship with stop. He had been a quiet but easily frightened horse...who knows what happened to him as a racer. After join up and living by those principles with him he would trust me even if he was completely unsure of a situation he was in. So thanks to Monty for that :-) Sadly stop passed away 4 months ago aged 21. Also of colic, self inflicted i believe as he was a bolter of his food! We has 12 great years together.

I have now just purchased my next horse... A Brumby gelding, out of the wild for 4 months and at the present he is being prepared for me to bring him home. He has to travel some distance so needs to be trained a little for that. I am very lucky that the association that rescued his is run by a lady who's training style is very similar to that of Monty so i have no fear of him being mistreated in that process :-) I am looking forward to starting a horse from the beginning. I have no formal riding training etc but i believe i have a commomsense kind of thinking and of course the wonderful Monty to guide me through!

Thats my bit :-) sorry if a tad long!


Kicki -- Sweden
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Just had to pop in again to say I am thrilled that so many took to this. :) :)
It has been great reading about you all.
Hej där! Yes, I do know what "mormor" means :D

ruthy - Gold Coast, Australia
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Thanks so much Kicki for initiating this, and for everyone for contributing. I have loved reading about everyone's journeys with their life and horses. So me:

I am 29 yrs old and live at the Gold Coast in Australia, but grew up out west on a sheep, cattle and farming station. We had lovely quiet horses in my very early years of riding as most of the horses on our property were working horses (Australian stockhorse crosses) bred by my grandmother. (My grandmother actually first gave me Monty's book in 1999 and a year later we went to see him in Brisbane, which was an amazing experience for both of us).

The first horse of my own however was one that we bought, and she was the most wonderful, kind horse, so very quiet - I have no idea what breed she was because I was about 6 when we bought her. After Flip, when I was around 9 yrs old I went through a number of ponies that my grandmother bought but which were not suitable (not quiet or safe enough for a young child) until we found the best pony any girl could have hoped for, 'Moonlight'. We never sold her, and she only died last year at the age of 29, living out her final years really owning my parents property - given free rein to wander thousands of acres with one other pony. I still find it hard to talk about her without getting emotional. I had many years of great fun and friendship with her, mustering sheep and cattle, going to pony club, swimming in the river, going out for rides with my sisters.

I went away to boarding school for high school and was lucky enough to be able to agist my next horse nearby. I kept him for only 3 years as I was progressing through the levels and he wasn't up to it. I then bought a great horse 'Jonte' a thoroughbred ex racehorse as a 5 year old and I still actually have him, although he is now retired out on my parents property. I learnt so much from him, and we had a great time together, mostly showjumping but he also went mustering sheep and cattle when I was out west, and we also played a season of polocrosse which was great fun!

I stopped competing not long after school and then I went overseas and worked in Ireland at 2 different horse places which was a great experience, and travelled around the UK and Europe a little bit.

I rode intermittently for the past 10 years until 3 years ago when I really got back into riding. I brought Jonte to the Gold Coast for a year before retiring him, which was great as he was the perfect horse to help me get back into the swing of things.

Then 18 months ago I purchased "Charlie" who has been the biggest teacher of all of my horses! He is a 9 yr old thoroughbred but was mistreated by his previous owners and was so nervous and stressed if he even thought I was going to get on him. He used to buck and rear, and go sideways or backwards. However, thank goodness for Monty's online uni - I signed up 6 months after I bought Charlie and if it hadn't been for this uni, and Monty's From My Hands To Yours book, I would have sold him as he was just too difficult for me to handle, but by going right back to MOnty's basics, he has improved out of sight and is so much happier and relaxed now. I took him to his first showjumping competition a month ago and I cried when we finished our round because I could not have asked for a more perfect first ever round of showjumping from him, and I could feel how much he was enjoying it. I still wish though that when I bought him that I knew what I know now, as he would have been happier a lot sooner, but I guess other horses will benefit from what he has taught me, and you have to learn somewhere!

I'm sorry this entry is so long - I didn't mean to talk about the horses so much! Quickly about me - I studied Occupational Therapy at University but work as a bookkeeper now. I did my Monty Roberts Introductory course with Lynn Mitchell in July 2011 and am going to do my exams in December. I love Monty's methods and would love to have more time and more money so that I can help more horses! One day soon.......!


MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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It is so great reading everyone's stories! Who is next?

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Although I had some reservations initially about these introductions they have proven to be a great idea. So thanks for starting it off, Kicki. Now when I am reading contributions on Forum I feel I know the person better and sometimes I even check back here. However there are still many forum contributors who are obviously feeling a bit hesitant/reluctant about introducing themselves as I did. Please have a go as this makes our uni an even richer experience as we get to know each other better. Just like any Uni really - introductions serve an important part. So again... who is next? We would enjoy meeting you and getting to know your background.

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What a great idea: I read alot of the questions and answers on the Forum and it is great to have a history of their lives. Like putting a face with a voice, Well here goes my little story. My name is Maggie and I was born and raised in Boise, Idaho, USA. I have been in love with horses since I was a little girl, 5-6. I knew every horse or pony in every pasture in Boise and outlying area. When I was little Boise was pretty rural. The very first teacher I had was a young western riding trainer. She taught me the most important lesson of all. SAFETY!!! for us and the horses. The horse we rode had been her barrel racing horse, named Tic Shot. I was in love and never forgot him. I begged my dad for a horse for 4 more years and he traded some guy in Eastern Idaho for a mare named Tinka and her foal who I named Clatawa, Nez Perce for Spotted he was an Red Roan Appaloosa. My sister rode Tink because she was "broke" and I got the baby. Tink was truly tricky, like a shetland and getting scraped off was a pretty regular occurance. We showed them and competed on them in western events which in the 60's for girls were barrel racing, goat tying, pole bending.I learned how to clip, bathe, trailer, muck stalls, feed and be resposible. Three years later, my sister and I had two new guys to love. I had an Arab x QH named Rebel and Tracy had a Morgan x QH named Judge. Learned a lot about what abuse can do to a horse and how dangerous it can be for both rider and horse. We bought Rebel from an old fashioned horse trader. I was only 14 and my parents were not to knowledgeable and Rebel was so beautiful. I had a lot of trouble stoping him. He would run out on the trail so the arena was the only safe to ride. When the vet came out to worm him the first time he asked me how I stopped this horse and I said I can't. He said no doubt, who ever rode him almost cut off his tongue with a spanish bit. he can notfeel anything. We then went to a Hackamore, better but not consistent, the true champion was a Bosal only. We went from breakneck speed to sliding stops almost at once. I know now that a Dually would have been wonderful for him as well. Rebel had a bad scar on his near back leg, caused barb wire. I lost him when I was 16 when we moved him to a new stable and he fought with a stallion through a 2 strand barb wire fence, I was at the barn heard the fight and by the time we were in the pasture he had almost severed his foot and the owner of the stable had to shoot him. No time for a vet. I have not owned a horse since, but I have taken endless hours of lessons. In college, in Virginia I learned to ride English and go over fences, did local shows and barn shows. I then moved to Eugene and took lessons with a wonderfully kind former student of George Morris. Next port of call was Seattle, Washington,lessons and new horsesh again. I was in a wonderful barn with great friends and I was 35 years old with a 3 year old girl. I fell once in a show and the horse kicked my ankle and broke it. I then knew a toddler and a mom on crutches is way tough. I have ridden on and off and half shared horses but not consistently. My husband died in 2002 and I moved back to Boise. Horses were not a part of my life for a very long time. In 2007 I met an old friend from high school and we began dating. He was working on a project in San Luis Obispo,C California. I had read all of Monty's books and really loved his style and work. I did not know at first that we were only 1 hour away from The Flag is Up Farm. My husband and I drove to the farm and walk to the round pen and watched Monty work with a pull-back stallion colt. This was one of his Special Training Clinics. I then made up my mind I wanted to know it all. I managed to attend Special Training 2009 with 40 people from the 4 corners of the earth. We spent 5 days on the farm, 20 remedial horses, world class farriers, Equine dentists, medal winning dressage rider, international polo stars. You name it we saw it. During lunch I got to speak to Monty and tell him how much of his message had crossed over into my own life, I had such a fractured life because of the losses our family had and how little trust I had in ever being happy again. I felt like an abused horse and he taught me that time and patience and having people be fair with me I would learn to trust again. His eyes teared and I burst into tears and he hugged me. I walk into his barn and I am 15 years old again. I feel young and confident and happy to be around the animals and and their people. I have been lucky enough to have attended 3 different clinics since then at the farm. Join-Up, Long Lining, Riding with Respect, where I met the man I want to marry, Inferno, a Willing Partner Horse. Still working on my husband to see it my way. I know that being with horses is the one true passion in my life and Monty and his teaching changed my life. I now have friends from all over the world who feel the same way I do. Thank you for suggesting this blog.

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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mssmith599 - thanks so much for this wonderful, touching story - I enjoyed reading it so much and do hope that you will soon have Inferno. How amazing living so close to Th Flag is up Farm and getting to know Monty like that. Good luck and take care.

Fiona from NZ
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Hi there everyone, I am probably one of the newest members (less than a month so far!) but I am trying to soak everything up like a sponge - I am just loving it.

I am from New Zealand and have just turned 40, I come from a very non horsey family and finally was able to get lessons when I was about 13 then went on to work in riding stables afterschool and full time once I left school. I learnt a lot at the stables but looking back now I feel ashamed about some of the experiences that the horses went through with the supposed "traditional methods" of horsemanship that were enforced and expected.

After leaving the stables I worked in offices so I could afford my own horse and have since married and had a son 4 years ago, whom loves horses :-)

I now live in a remote part of NZ breeding clydesdale cross horses and I feel like I have finally found the missing part of the puzzle when I came across Monty's work.

I am just so thankful that I picked up Monty's book in the library "the man who listens to horses", I don't think my life or my horses lives will ever be the same again and for that I'm thankful.

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Thank you everyone for all the interesting stories.
I am originally from South Africa but am working in Japan at the moment. As a child I loved horses and always begged my parents to buy me a white pony. We lived in the city and didn't have much money so I never got the pony. At about age 11 we moved to a different city and my sister, my cousin and I managed to convince our parents to let us start riding lessons at a nearby stable. We were soon going to the stable at every opportunity to groom horses, muck stables and sometimes, if we were luckily, get a free ride on someone's horse.
I rode and worked at various stables all through high school. When I started university I rode and worked at a riding school that also rescued horses. It was at this yard that I met Silver, who was about 3 years old. The first time I saw him I knew that I had met my horse. At the time I had no money, was still studying and had no idea if his owner would ever sell him. Luckily after riding him regularly for three years, I was able to buy him with my parents' help. I finally got my white pony!
When I came to Japan I had to leave him in South Africa but my wonderful cousin (the same one I started riding lessons with) is taking care of him and riding him while I am here. He is a pretty fearless character and we once came second in a fancy dress competition dressed as a 'party animal'. Silver wore a party hat for the occasion.

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Thank you everyone for telling your stories.
They are wonderful and help me to understand the comments better.
Some have touched my heart to the core.
I have always beleived that learning the background of someone's life helps us to understand them better and helps us to know what makes them tick.
You all tick like a perfect clock and Monty would be proud to call you his friends, I do!!!

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Ditto Ronda - I feel the same way. It is fabulous to know that other people around the world share our love for horses and treat them so well. These stories are so very refreshing and touching. Thanks everyone!

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Hello everyone. I think this is a FABULOUS idea. I was searching for a thread that would give a little info on the other students! :)
I am soon to be 37years old, live in Northern Ontario, Canada, have been married for 17years and we have 3 beautiful children. My daughter is the only that is "into horses". We live on a 225acre farm and at this moment have 9 horses. 4 of which belong to my daughter, 3 to my husband, 1 is a friends, and 1 is mine. (on Feb 29, we had to put our old draft mare, of 34years, down. It was a sad moment, but I sat with her until the very end.....)
I have been a "horse-aholic" my entire life. Started riding lessons in grade 7, became best friends with my instructor, started helping with lessons, basically moved in with her family, had a falling-out with my friend (stopped talking altogether with her), got married at the age of 19, had 3 babies before I was 23, and stopped riding due to no time. I have been around horses though, as my husband has always had draft horses. With a few rough pushes in the "right direction" I finally got my daughter interested in horses (she was not at all interested in the beginning). But now, I have another "horse-aholic" on my hands :) I FINALLY bought my first horse this passed fall and was so super excited to start riding and working with her. The day after I purchased her, my daughter (aged 14 at the time) had a horrible fall that resulted in a severe concussion and was NOT allowed to ride for atleast 6months. I tried going out to work with my young mare, but every time I did, it resulted in my daughter wanting to ride with me, which turned into a huge fight because she was not allowed to ride, which began putting a wedge in our relationship. So, as a mother, I put my horse away for the winter to salvage my relationship. In turn, it was fine, not too many people do much riding here in the winter with the snow and cold temps. I have been checking out Monty's website and receiving his emails all winter. I just joined now, because my daughter's been given the go ahead to start riding again, the snow's all gone, and my ring is finally dry enough!!!! I'm so excited to bond with my mare and build a LONG lasting relationship with her. I have been studying all that I can and am working on finishing my riding ring and putting up a round pen. Then, I will go full force with my mare and her training!!!!!!! I'm so excited to have joined and am excited about getting to know all of you better! I'm am ready to soak up as much information as my brain can possibly hold!!!!! I could go on and on forever about things I would love to say. But I'm sure I've rambled on enough :)
Thanks for this idea and can't wait to get to know some of you better and gain knowledge!!!!

Kleinne - Utah, U.S.A.
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Wow, this was fun getting to know everyone and reading your stories. I live in rural eastern Utah, USA. I was born and raised on a farm I think I must have been born on a horse because I don't remember a time that I wasn't riding. My best friend up the road owned horses and that's were I spent my summers, her family gave me a shetland pony named Red when I was about 10 years old. He was the best little pony a girl could have. We spent our summers hearding cows, riding through the fields, and just having fun. I remember my dad getting me up early in the summers to drive tractor to pick up hay bales, I think I started driving when I was about 8 years old. Anna (my best friend) and I were fearless and we would ride about any horse there was. I remember one time one of the neighbors horses got mixed up with one of their's and we saddled and rode him, we didn't know if he was ride able or not but we did anyway, somehow we managed to get through our childhood without any injuries. I moved to Phoenix, Arizona after high school were I met and married my husband we had a daughter and moved back to Utah in 1992. We have 5 beautiful children, my two oldest daughters are now in college. After many years of being without horses we bought 2 geldings about 4 years ago and then a 3rd gelding a few months later. I discovered Monty about 3 years ago after having a lot of problems with the youngest gelding that we bought. We've since lost our 2 older horses this past winter. Our beautiful Arabian died suddenly in November and then our other old gelding just last month, he had just turned 32 four days earlier. We now have just 1 horse and our neighbors horse that we board and take care of. I'm 44 years old, I have an interior design business and a wedding decorating business. Most of my time has been spent raising my children as a full time mother, I've been blessed to be able to stay at home and just work on the side in a field that I'm passionate about. I've spent many years in the Interior design business and bought a wedding decorating business about a year and half ago when a friend of mine approached me with the idea. However, my passion for horses has been a life time and there are many opportunities for me to train where I live because everyone out here has horses and most have some problems it seems like. I would love to some day go to Flag is up farms and meet Monty and take his courses but for now I'm happy to have the opportunity to work with as many horses as I can. My neighbors up the road (my friend Anna's parents), have 2 horses they want trained, a 3 year old filly very friendly but has no training and a 5 year old Appaloosa that was broke at two but never ridden again, should be a challenge but I'm looking forward to getting started with them. Dean (the owner of the horses) is in his late 70's and wants to ride the Appaloosa so I have to be able to train him to be almost like a willing partners type horse to be safe for him, it will be a challenge, I hope I can do it. Thank you for all that you've taught me here on the Uni, I've only been a member since January but it's been such a wonderful tool and having the opportunity to get to know people from all over the world and learn from your experience has been invaluable.

phantommustang1 Walsenburg, Colorado, USA
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Well, ok. Here goes. Providing the computer will cooperate.
I was born in Boulder, Colorado, in 1954, moved to Estes park, Co when I was 6 months old, had one older brother, 14 years older, 2 sisters, ne 10 years older, the other 8 years older, and a brother 5 years younger.I was the only one who loved horses, and did from the time I was born, I think. My big brother liked them and worked on a ranch for awhile but he wasnt as crazy about them as I was. Mom was scared of them and didnt like them. She cleaned cabins and motels, dad was a mechanic. Mom thought I should act like a girl and wear dresses and play with dolls, but all I wanted to do was have a horse and be a cowboy, since they got to wear jeans and ride. My sister kept telling me I couldnt be a cowboy, I had to be a cowgirl, but they always wore dresses and never did anything fun, so I didnt want to. I learned to read well before I was done with first grade, and read everything I could get my hands on that had anything to do with horses. Dad got me my first horse for Christmas when I was 8, over moms objections, he got one for my middle sister too, although she was afraid of them and didnt like them. Both my oldest sister and brother had moved out by that time. Up until then, mom had done everything she could to keep me away from horses, but I guess Dad decided the only way I would be happy was if I had one.He didnt get a saddle, though, so I taught myself to ride bareback and spent every chance I had on Queenie. I never had any lessons, and nobody ever taught me anything, I just learned by doing. We lived in a house that belonged to a rather large cattle ranch, and I had the run of the place, it was wild and full of wildlife and I loved watching them. So I spent the next 2 years running around mostly by myself in the mountains, since I had nobody to ride with. Just me and Queenie. Meanwhile, Dad had bought a shetland for my little brother, which he didnt care about, only liking cars and trucks, and another mare who was 7 years old and terrified of people, as was the stallion he also bought at the same time, then added 2 yearlings because the guy he got all of them from was so mean to them Dad thought he would kill them. He also had a big appaloosa stallion and when we went there one day, I didnt know what the guy was like because nobody ever told me anything, and I saw that horse and was out of the car and through the fence and went right up to him and was petting him, and he was nuzzling me when the guy saw what was going on and screamed to dad to get me out of there, that stallion was a killer. So dad called me and I went back, with the horse following.
When I was 10, we moved to Boulder, in town, with the horses pastured about 7 miles out, then moved out of town and could have them with us. About a year later we moved over by Longmont where we stayed until I left home at 17. Mom had sold all the horses but the old mare, who was a year younger than me, and told me IF I could break this so called unbreakable mare, I could have her. She didnt think I could, siunce she had hired some guys to break her and they couldnt even get started with her. So I took a bridle out and told her I was going to ride her, put the bridle on, and got on. She stood there. I reached down, pulled a long weed and smacked her with it, and she went. Very calmly and that was all it took.
I ran off with my boyfriend when I was 17, mostly to get away from mom, and he said he wanted to live in the country but 13 years later, I realized he had no intentions of ever moving out of town, we had a daughter and a son by that time and he bought a house in Pueblo. I was a full time mom. Things went from bad to worse so we got divorced, my daughter stayed with him and my son stayed with me. Then I met another guy who wouldnt live in town if you paid him, and we married and adopted mustangs until until his death 18 years later. I had to sell all the horses but my stallion and a mare, then my stallion died and I lost the mare and the last 2 fillies because I couldnt find a place to keep them. I met Jim at work, we both worked construction and hit it off really well, so got married and are still happy after 7 years. I never went to college, but did go to school for carpentry, and taught myself woodcarving and have sold quite a few things. One I sold was a buffalo that Al Unser, the race car driver, bought. My one clam to fame. We now live outside of La Veta, Colo, in the foothills. I dont do much carving anymore because of nerve damage in both hands. I missed the horses so much that Jim decided I needed Princess, who needed a home where she would be loved and not ignored. We lucked out by meeting a guy who lives in Golden but has a 90 acre ranch near here that he doesnt have time to do anything with, and all we have to do is clean it up and keep the fences up in order to keep the horses there. Plenty of grass and a barn, 3 springs and a well. And its surrounded on 3 sides by the ranch Jim now works on. He wasnt crazy about construction, but loves working on the ranch. He has been there 4 and a half years now.
I have done things with other peoples horses they said couldnt be done, like one mare who couldnt be ridden without spurs, or close to a cliff, or bareback, I did all with no problem at all, a 4 year old mustang who couldnt be broke, I did it anyway, when I was younger I would ride anything, if I got thrown I just got back on. But it seems like the ground gets harder the older you get, and now I dont really want to get thrown. I never was a bronc rider,always thought there were easier ways to break a horse, have never used a whip or had spurs on except for Halloween one time. After getting thrown by the 4 year old mustang one time, I had a black eye, still dont know how THAT happened, and 2 broken ribs, which made the dr laugh at me, he told me didnt I know that a 29 year old mother of a 7 month old son shouldnt be doing things like that? I would have laughed too, but it hurt too much. Red never threw me again. And I did ride him many times after that. I have only been thrown once since, and it was my own horse, who I had been riding for several years with him not even trying, but I cut our ride short one day because there was a thunderstorm coming and I didnt want to get caught in it but he wasnt ready to go home yet. He started to, then without any warning, bucked me of and took off. I picked my self up, looked at him, yelled then STAY out here, and started limping home. He let out a whinny and came running. I started to get back on, then lightning hit way too close, so I led him home. And got soaked. My hip still hurts sometimes.

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Oh Phantom I laugh everytime I read this.
Not that it's funny but your way of expressing yourself. It's so real, it reminds me of my Dad. He was that way too.
You always knew he'd say it like it was.
Love it and can't wait for someone else's experience.

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Just great to read your stories, corbegra, klienne and phantommustang. I have lost some precious riding time doing so but they were so much fun to read it was certainly time well spent! I loved them all!


hi i am very new to this and i am loving it .this was a prezzie from my lovely partner.
my name is katreana x i live in england had quite a few diffrent jobs but at the moment im a full time mum of 2 boys.i hve been very lucky x been round horses since i was 5 years old. i dont only love horses they are my passion .my mum got me my own horse at the age of 13 she is a beautiful arab chestnut mare she was 5 when i got her x i still got her at the grand old age of 33.i have also got her daughter she will be 16 in august,i also just bought a lovely little colt (gypsey vanner)he is so much fun x really great natured but also a handful lol . i have always been intrestered in montys methods i have never agreed in violence towards horses or any other animal .i have used his methods with my horses and with others (at 1 point between me and my mum we had 7 horses at one time)and touch wood they have always worked.i really do hope that one day i will get my dream x be able to meet monty x get the certificates i need to be able help other people think this way towards horses. nice to read about you all you all sound very nice . thanks 4 reading but bear with me im new lol,kat


I have enjoyed reading your stories very much. You all sound so alive. Isn´t that wonderful????
OK. I am 57 years old, American but born and living in the North of Spain. beautiful country and now it seems I shall end my days here. (I always thought I´d be a great dancer and live in either the US or Great britain. My mother was an amazing human being and had the heart of a gypsy. A young widow she decided to live in Spain where she could raise me without having to work and I would have the benefit of a second language and culture. Dance was my first passion but after a neck injury and as I love to talk I became a Teacher of English as a Second Language. Really comunication is my thing...Theatre, teaching, translating, writing (unpublished) stories and now learning to comunicate with my horse. I´m married, I am a stepmom and we live in an encahnted valley of Cantabria which you are all welcome to visit. We only have two spare rooms but... and you can bring your horse expertise with you in exchange.
I only knew about horses from what books I had read and what my mother had told me about them. She loved horses and she loved riding. being a calm, balanced and gentle person she always had excellent relationships with animals (horses, dogs, cats...). I always wanted to know horses and have one I could call my very own. In dreams I rode often and the feeling was of freedom and conexion.
We used to wacth "Black beauty", "Furia", "Follyfoot" on TV and we saw "Te Black Stallion", "The Horse Whisperer" and "Hidalgo" By the time we read Monty´s book on his life and thoughts we were ready. I knew I had been glentle with the very few horses I had met and I knew I wantd to educate my horse like Monty.
But, by the time my husband gave me a 5 month old filly for my 54th birthday, my mother was no longer with us. My husband, Lorenzo, is gentle with animals and people but he hasn´t been exposed to the secrets of tai Chi or Yoga and just hasn´t the patience to keep his adrenaline low. he would never dream of causing pain on purpose to any living creature but he wants results fast, he is also afraid that I will get hurt by lack of experience. Also, he is intellectually busy with other things and therefore hasn´t read Monty´s books.
This means I am alone with Willow. Everybody feels they should tell me how to deal with her, which is a drag. Where I live, those who have horses to ride, I´m afraid, use a little force when introducing them to saddle and rider. Everybody urges me to saddle and ride Willow, they´ve even offered to do it for me, and not necessarily violently but by "just letting her know who the boss is". They don´t understand when I refuse. They say I´ll never be able to ride her, that it´s really too late.. you know.
Who cares? Willow seems content. We are JOINED from our first evening together (I have written about it elsewhere in the forum) and she is as well kept as possible in our leaky stone stable. She has the company of rabbits, cats, dogs and she sees the cows in the neighbouring fields. She is sweet and gentle as can be and I am absolutely sure that there isn´t a speck of malice in her character.
She wears a halter since her first week with us. And nobody has ever raised a hand or anything against her. She responds well to the Dually Halter but I don´t use it every day because of time and house/work chores. So we have deviced ways to get her home (safely for me) from her day-fields. She always walks out of her stall slowly and follows calmly to where she´ll spend the day. I turn her around to face me and unclasp the lead. When i´s evening, she´s eager and wants to go in a rush. As I usually come home then or have just finished doing things in the house, she will just be wearing a regular halter so I haven´t the benefit of the self-schooling. We prepare her carrots and hay and either post someone on the road, in case of traffic, or hang a rope across the road if I´m alone. Then I let her out of the field and she has her run staright to her stall. Well, she sometimes takes her time because there´s always something to nibble at on the side of the road, or she must check on the chicken coop or the next door cows, but it works. (I have written also about our friend´s dog chasing Willow home). I am aware that steady work with the Dually would correct things very quickly. But I am still wary of working alone with her as she is now nearly 4 and getting bigger. We only have grass fields or the road. Not a busy one though, and some weekends, in Summer, when the days are longer - with Lorenzo watching out for traffic,I school her on stopping, walking backwards or going forward at my sweet spot and staying still. But these lessons are far apart.
Because of my neck injury I may never be able to trot, let alone gallop but I do see myself on her bare back, in her field, just walking or being carried by her.... I know I would prefer not to use a bit and manage with the Dually, unless or until someone with Monty´s skills prepares her.
Soon she will have a sheep companion and hopefully eventually there will be donkeys and maybe we´ll let her have a foal(or filly). I just want to have a healthy mare, understand her and make her as happy as can be living with humans - which is an imposition on my part with so little knowledge, but the alternative for a horse of her kind (sort of a mountain cob) would have been the meat factory so, in the end I hope to be the best for her.
I have so many questions..Is there a time limit to educate her? Or to ride her? Does she need to "know" a male and have a foal (or filly) for her health?
Phew! I´m not even going to look back at what I´ve written or i´ll erase it all. Thanks for this opportunity. Keep it up!

phantommustang1 Walsenburg, Colorado, USA
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Christy, no. She is NOT too old at all, she is still very young. Even a much older wild horse can be trained, especially if you go about it right, meaning without force. Montys methods work great. The first horse I trained, was a 13 year old mare we got when she was 7. She was halter broke and that was all, and my mom never did anything with her, and neither did anyone else. When She was 13 and I was 14, mom gave her to me on the condition I could break her, so I went out, put a bridle on her, and got on. She just stood there. So I reached down, pulled a weed and whacked her with it, and she walked off just as nice as could be. With that horse, that was all there was to it, and she was supposed to be unbreakable. I have trained others the same age, and the first mustang I trained belonged to another lady, he was 4 and never ridden, still fairly wild. I rode him within a couple of days. He did buck sometimes, so I always let him go after saddling him, and let him get it out of his system before getting on. My 11 year old son broke his first wild horse when she was 6 and newly adopted. We had worked with her a bit, and he loved her and was always with her, so one day I asked if he wanted to try to ride her, he got all happy, so I boosted him up on her back, and the next thing I knew, he was riding her all over the place. So no, your horse is far from being too old to train. And, not that I am an expert in horses mating, I dont see why it should be a problem if she never is.

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Hi Christy,
My little mare (filly really) is only 4 years old. They are still considered very young at that age.
I believe Monty only introduces them to traiing when they are younger but waits util they are a bit older before too much is done with them.
Mares especially take a bit more time to mature. Be patient she will come into her own very soon.
I have watched STAR grow up before my eyes. This year there seems to be an emotionaly maturity that she did not have last year but she is still far from mature.
This winter she really grew taller but has not filled out quite yet because of that she still looks like a baby.
My vet college said to wait much longer for STAR to even be considered for "covering". They do not want mares pregnant until they are at least 10. For some that may seem old but they can live to a ripe old age and they said she would make a better mother if she are older.
Also, it can be hard on the young mare to give birth.
So be patient, watch all the videos and ask as many questions as you can think of.
We are all here for you,

Certified Instructor Ann Lindberg/Sweden
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This was so much fun! So I am NOT going to spoil if for you! I will put my website in english though:) Have Fun! Warmest Ann Sweden

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Wow, so much horse experience on this forum! My name is Vicci, 47 in July, living in North Wales, UK. My story is very different and while I am happy to share it, I don't want to bore people so will give a very short summary and if anyone wants to know more by all means ask :-)

Careers I've had: Social Services Manager, Therapist, Nurse, Community Developmetn, CEO not for profit organisation, columnist for an urban regeneration magazine, and a lot of other stuff too! So what did any of this have to do with horses? Nothing! I was terrified of them.

Is it possible to hold love and absolute terror in your heart and mind at the same time? Sadly yes, I was desperate to be with horses but to my horror I discovered that I had the most paralsying fear of them - please don't think I exaggerate, I could not go near them if they weren't tied up and if I rode one no matter how gentle I would be in tears of terror.

What do I do now? I am a self employed horse trainer. Yes, you read it right ;-) I have also transferred all the principles (where applicable) to dog training and work with dogs too. The story of how I got there is of course tied up with Natural Horsemanship/Monty Roberts/Kelly Marks and my local mentor Mary Benfield.

I have been to Flag is Up and Monty was home. I was a babbling idiot when I met him (they say you should never meet your heroes!!) and Barry Humphreys (Dame Edna Everage) was there too! I watched Monty and Nice Chrome 'cut' guinea fowl, I met the newly arrived Willing Partners babies arrive, I watched the advance course and...... the story goes on...... (so much for the short version!) If you want to know more please ask, I have no secrets ;-)

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Oh forgot to say, I grew up with a lion cub too.....

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Wow viccihh!! That is amazing! To turn your fear around is outstanding!!!! I've very interested to hear HOW you went about doing that??? :)

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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A fantastic story, viccihh!! What an outcome! Thanks for sharing it.

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Hi Christy - I just read your story - didn't have time earlier. It is also a lovely story and you asked a number of questions - some answers to these questions may be found in forum and/or in Monty's videos and book. I think Willow is lucky to have you and hopefully with time you will be able to lead her safely back to the barn. Many mares never have foals so that is not a problem. However I think most love the experience if it is available for them. If you can I would tend to increase her training with the dually and do training sessions more frequently so that she does become and easier to handle companion for you. Hopefully some day you will ride her.


Phantommustang, Maggie and Star, thank you for your comments. How reassuring! I´ve been looking everywhere for this post and only now did I find it again. It is so interesting to read about you all and our horses.....Yes, Willow still behaves like a very young creature, wonderful as she is. I´ll continue being patient and try to have more Dually sessions, even if it is only to walk up and down the road!
Thank you again. And Vicciih, a lion cub???? Please do elaborate.

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Well, I've gone ahead and made myself a facebook profile, if anyone is interested in "friending" me lol.

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What a great idea. Great to know about other members and what a combined wealth of knowledge and experience. I am a new member and am extremely glad to have joined. I will continue the theme.

My Name is Sam Fearnley. I am 44 years old. I live in a small rural town on the South Coast of New South Wales, Australia on about 83 acres surrounded by National Park and Wilderness Area. I have a partner, Mark and 2 step children, 14yr old girl and 17yr old boy. I have lived on this property for just over 2 yrs. I moved here from Northern Beaches of Sydney in 2004 where I was born and grew up. We live an alternative lifestyle, trying to be semi self sufficient, growing our own veggie, fruit and poultry. We don't have any services, i.e. we pump water from our creek to tanks, we have no electricity our cottage is powered by solar with a 12 volt system so we have no modcons, i.e. no television, dishwasher, dryer.

I worked as a veterinary nurse (small animals) for 10 or so years and as a medical secretary/executive assistant in Community Health Centres and medical specialists, .i.e. pshychiatrists and rehabilitation physicians. I am not working at the moment........ But it cannot last forever.

Animals, I cannot imagine my life without them. I currently have 4 cats, chickens, Muscovy ducks and of course 3 horses. We also have plenty of wildlife wandering around the place, i.e. kangaroos, wallabies, wombats. I have friends involved with local wildlife rescue, rehabilitation and education and my place is often used as a wildlife release site.

I am a novice when it comes to horses. When I was young I took riding lessons, but unfortunately I was attacked and thrown over a fence by a horse after a lesson and had been scared of horses ever since. My step daughter had a horse and rode with the local pony club so over time getting to know her horse and helping her with grooming etc, helped me overcome my fear. Sadly the horse died of colic just before we moved to the farm. After being on the farm for a few months we decided to get another horse as my step daughter still wanted to continue with pony club, and 1 end up being 3. All thoroughbreds, Lucy our mare is 11 yrs she was a show jumper and dressage horse. Lucy was given to us as she was being kept in a small area and was not being ridden. A few weeks later we acquired Burt 7yr old gelding and Dobbi 11 yr old gelding both ex-race horses. Okay so now comes my real introduction to horses, I will give the shortest version possible. Lucy got spooked one day (reason never been discovered and this has not happened again) she was in the paddock not being ridden and took off we found her 3-4 kms away her hooves were a mess. How quickly my vet nursing skills came back, with the help of the most amazing veterinarian who taught me how to administer to horses injectible antibiotics and pain relief and bandage her hooves etc and farrier who has taught me to file her hooves, I nursed Lucy intensely for many months and after six months we got the all clear. If you have any questions about this I am happy to answer. Not long after this happened my step daughter lost interest in horse riding and has since moved to live with her mum so the horses have not been ridden for a long time. I heard about Monty and found the website and joined. Now I am not working I actually have some time to learn about and understand horses as I want to have the best quality of life for them. I read a lot of books but it has mostly been about growing veggies etc. My plan is to learn as much as possible, take all the advice I can get to help me with the horses and to become a competent person with horses and to start riding my horses. I believe I have a strong bond with Lucy and actually if I go to the paddock and call her she comes to me. They boys are just wonderful and gentle and easy to work with. I file the horse’s hooves on a weekly basis in between farrier visits and this has not been a problem. I am going to contact a local person and see if I can take some riding lessons with them as I know they believe and follow Monty's philosophy.

I would like to know what the behaviour displayed by Dobbi the other day might mean. When standing for the farrier he started mouthing the railing next to him, like horse stuck in a stable all day can do. He wanders in large paddocks all day with the other horses and he was only standing for the farrier for about 5 minutes when this started and he now does this when he stands for me if there is a pole nearby. Any suggestions? I thought he might be bored.

So that is a very brief blurb about me and my mob. Please feel free to ask any questions.
Take care, Cheers Sam

Hello! 100 lessons completed facebook profile is CHRISTY DEE :)

Rahni (Sydney, Australia)
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Hi everyone :)
I am finally finding the time to introduce myself properly! (I think this thread is crucial to the forum, so thank you for starting it Kicki :))

My name actually is Rahni. I figured I'd use my real name here considering everyone who uses this forum pays and therefore you'd all have to be trust worthy, kind hearted horsey people to be here ;) My name is of Indian origin, but I am not! I'm an Australian with British heritage. I grew up and now live in Sydney on the Northern Beaches, in the "horse haven" area. My suburb is semi-rural and there are many horses and riding schools here.

I have been riding since I was 7 years old and have been a horse owner since I was 17. When I left high school I went to uni and studied to become a primary teacher (a teacher of 5-12 year olds, for those of you who live outside of Aus). Halfway through my degree, I took a year off and did 2 certificates in horse management and then spent some time working in the racing industry. I went back to uni and completed my teaching degree and taught in school for a while.

I am now a mum to 4 beautiful children, one boy and three girls - 8, 6, 5 & 3! So our house is a busy one lol and I haven't taught in the classroom since having my son 8 years ago. Since having kids I did some study and became a doula. Some of you may know what a doula is/does, but for those of you who don't, I shall explain further....... the word "doula" comes from the Greek and is translated as "woman's servant or slave". Doulas as a profession work with pregnant and birthing women and their partners to support them through pregnancy, the birth and then the first few weeks after baby is born. Did you know that the incidences of PTSD is as prevalent in US women who have given birth as it is in war veterans? Ok, so I'm not in America, but Australia's maternity system is very similar and the rates of PTSD and PPD (post partum depression) are high and on the rise. Doulas are becoming popular as they are able to support and care for the labouring woman in a motherly fashion that makes her feel safe and nurtured as she births, (just the way horses need to feel safe to birth successfully :) ). Women who feel supported, safe and cared for during labour and birth have a higher chance of birthing naturally, better birth outcomes for themselves and their babies and lower rates of depression. I do this work on a casual basis as I prefer to put most of my emotional energy into my children!

But I digress, so back to horses......over my life so far I have owned 7 horses. My first 2 were a rescued pair, a chestnut thoroughbred mare and a grey, proud cut Welsh Mountain pony and wow, did they teach me a lot!! A couple of years later, I bought a little bay pony mare off my neighbour who was moving, then later sold her to my cousin who did well at local shows on her. Around this time I was given a 3 year old, 12hh English Riding pony, who I trained to saddle and showed for 3 or so years successfully until he came down with colic and had to be put to sleep. After he passed away, I bought myself a very well bred, beautiful liver chestnut, 3 year old, very green, Anglo Arab mare, "Bree". I still had my original 2 horses who sadly, but eventually died of old age and Bree became my only horse and absolute pride and joy. She was amazing! Around the time I bought her, my mum bought me Monty's book, "The Man Who Listens To Horses" and we also went to see him live here in Sydney. I was very excited about his methods of training and did join-up with her, but didn't really grasp how to transfer this principle any further. All my riding lessons had been with traditional style teachers, so I created my own primitive mix of my interpretation of Monty's style and the riding styles I had grew up with. Sadly, earlier this year Bree broke her hind cannon bone and had to be put to sleep. Even though this was devastating, her passing made me re-asses how I would start another young horse and after Googling "Monty Roberts" I ended up here!

I have since bought 2 unhandled, miniature pintaloosa horses (but they look like fluffy ponies lol). One, a gelding "Popeye" is blind in one eye and my original intention was to buy him as a paddock mate for a young 15hh, Arab filly I was looking at, but when I went to look at him, I saw another very cute pony who I thought would be perfect for my kids. Thus, I came home with 2 ponies! We called the second one Cloud. He's a 2 year old colt, soon to become a gelding. At the time we were looking at moving to a larger property where we would have been able to keep 3 horses, but that fell through and I had to let the filly go.

In some ways though I am happy that we only have the 2 little horses, as I am really enjoying learning and practicing Monty's methods with them. Three green equines, could have been a little overwhelming lol!

I don't post much on here, but do read a lot, so thank you to all of you who contribute as I have learned heaps since watching the lessons and reading on here.
And thank you too, if you made it to the end of my long post!!
Blessings, Rahni

Rahni (Sydney, Australia)
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Hi Sam!
Lovely to see some one from my own state on here and we borth grew up on the Northern Beaches! Sounds like you live in a beautiful and idealic part of the country. We have plans to live on a similar sized property and be as self sufficient too, in the near future :) We will be heading north though.
You asked about Dobbi mouthing the railings.....if he is an ex-race horse as y mentioned, this might be an old habit he developed while being stabled as a race horse. As you know a lot of race horse spend most of their days stabled and thus get bored. Chewing and wind-sucking (when they take hold of a rail or fence with their teeth and suck in air) are common habits that can develop among stabled horses. Standing for the farrier next to a rail has probably just triggered that old habit again. These habits are pretty hard to break unfortunately, but keeping him in a paddock where he has lots to do and explore is the best place for him.
Look forward to seeing you around the forum :)

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Hi Rahni, What a beautiful profession you have and thank you for the information. I did learn what this behaviour is and thank goodness he is not windsucking just mouthing. My horses are not stabled although they have access to shelter if they choose. I figured he needed more to stimulate him so I have put a routine in place so the 3 horses have access to the other paddocks on the property. As it is winter, I un-rug them and then we walk across either creek crossing and along to the other paddock. At the end of the day I would bring them home groom, rug and feed them. Now they are waiting for their rugs off and come home for feeding etc. I am also loving this forum alot of helpful information. Again thank you.

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Thanks for your introduction, Rahni. It was great to read about you!

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Perhaps some of our new members would like to add an introduction here as this is a useful way of getting to know each other better too.

Horse addict (From the good old USA)
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I've already been here since 2010, but I never have properly told about myself, well, here it goes! I'm in my 20's, I've been riding horses on and off since I was 12 years old. I never had a chance to own my own horse, or compete in any shows yet, but I'm still hoping to do so. I met Monty Roberts in Massachusetts, in November of 2010, and it was great! :)
I grew up watching the channel RFDTV, and have seen many different horse trainers. Some of them were really good, but I've learned a lot more being here at the Equus Uni learning Monty's methods which I think are better. I'm hoping one of these days, to do what Monty does as a career.

ruthy - Gold Coast, Australia
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Hi all,
Not sure where it started, but loving that people are putting the place they are from in their profile name, so I have just changed mine too!
Regards, Ruth

The Lost Soul (Northeastern Wisconsin, USA)
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I have never been quick to talk about myself, but here goes...
I grew up on a beef farm in Northeastern Wisconsin, where we still run about 250 head Black Angus. My first introduction to horses was in 1999, when my sister got her first horse. Deciding at that time that horses were not for me, I became obsessed with anything with moving parts. I quickly began to build several creations, some more crazy than others. While I set out to build go karts and bulldozers, my sister got 2 more horses in 2001. These 2 were 6 months old in September of that year. In due time they were sent to be started. It was a very short time(only a couple of months) and they were back home as "green broke". There came problems with that however. My father could not ride well, and was not at all doing anything right as far as finishing their training though. He is not the type to listen to anyone else; its his way or no way. Shortly after the horses returned home, almost all riding of them stopped, because if anyone rode, then my father would have to ride, and if he rode bad riding habits quickly developed. The years rolled by, and for reasons still unknown, in May 2009, when I was 17, my biological father walked out on us, which began a very long and very messy divorce. Before anyone goes and starts to feel sorry for me, this was one of the best things that has ever happened to me. It was then that I began to take care of the 2 horses that we had at that time. I had only ridden maybe a dozen times at best, and they had not been ridden hardly in years. Well, riding 101 on a spooky, green broke quarter horse and a half thoroughbred half quarter horse. Definitely not the best way to learn to ride, but it does work. Unfortunately, when the divorse was finally settled (Nov 2010) the courts awarded my "father" with one of the horses. So in May of 2011, on a Saturday night when nobody was home, he rolled in and took his horse. That is the worst sound to hear when you walk outside an night is the sound of one Beamer calling out looking for Ebony. He got over it and luckily did not pine much, but since has seemed distant. 2011 came and went, with me spending a significant amount of time riding Beamer. I did not ride during the winter (that changed this winter) so I was rather excited about the arrival of spring in 2012. Things started off well, with him being, well him, and me enjoying the rides. When June hit though, things went downhill. (remember I do not own this horse!) He started to walk like he was stiff or his joints were bothering him. I knew something was wrong but could not convince the owner (being my sister and mother) that something needed to be done. Finally, when it was almost too late, I took matters into my own hands. After hiring and firing a rather narrow minded vet and an abusive farrier, and finding suitable replacements for both, Beamer is doing well.
Now to what has brought me to this great place of learning. In the years previous, I read a series of 23 books; the Heartland series. In there they talked about something very similar to join up. Having heard stories about people being greeted by there horses and many other remarkable things, I decided that instead of dreaming that join up could be real, I put Google to the test and was not disapointed. My only regret is that I didn't find this about 10 years earlier.
I have no idea what has become of Ebony. I hope she is well, but my father and I were not on speaking terms before he took Ebony so I don't know if he still has her or not.
And now you know a little more about the Lost soul.
Now if only I could actually accomplish Join up with Beamer... Its a work in progress.


Hi All

Really inspired and touched by all your stories. There are a lot of true survivors out there! Hard to keep ones story short but will do my best.

My name is Helene I am 33 years old.I grew up in the countryside, East Sussex England. I have always been nuts about horses and had a lovely childhood hacking out on our little 11 hand hairy ponies in all weather conditions every weekend. Also spend the summer holidays backing the young ponies for our keep as it were before they were sold on as it was a ponie stud. I did my BHS stage one at Plumpton college, but went on a spontaneous backpacking trip to southern Africa in 1997 before my BHS stage 2 and never returned to the Uk except to visit. Sadly left horses for almost 10 years as I ended up running a backpackers lodge on a little jungle island in the middle of the Zambezi river in Zambia where I met my now husband. We now live in Botswana, on the Okavango delta and have our own backpackers lodge and 2 little boys of 1 and 2 and a half years old. Before I left the Uk i wanted to find a more humane way of training horses as this was my passion. My dad gave me Montys book. It was exactly what I was looking for and I have never looked back. Monty is a legend and an true saint.Botswana is horse country and they are still used as a mode of transport!:) I was given a foal by a fried and told to collect it from the 5000 hecter farm in the Kalahari desert when it reach two. When the colt i named Frodo turned 2 I took a week of work and traveled 300km to the Kalahari farm to collect him. I had watched a join up video before and and was so excited to try it out. In hindsight I was crazy as it should not be done by armatures especially not on a wild unhanded colt! My angels must have been working hard that week as I got into the (Kinda) round pen with this colt and started join up. I got join up and really good follow up and spend the next 5 days working with him twice a day. When i first put the saddle on in a large paddock, no sooner had i done up the girth he took of bucking like a wild thing. Suddenly he stopped dead about 100 metres away from me and turned back and ran to me and stood right next to me quivering as if to say, help, what now? Clearly I had succeeded in becoming his safety zone, it was a very emotional experience. Frodo is now 7 and we have had loads of fun together playing polo crosse, hacking out, cross country jumping etc and had and exceptional bond. I got another horse 2 years ago from the same place in the same fashion I called Shadow. He is a completely different horse and more tricky, but I have had great success just sticking to Monty's methods as much as possible. I have just re-backed Shadow after a long break due to children, work etc. Shadow is 4 years old and doing really nicely. Both my horses live at home with us, we converted the garage into stables and the cars live outside ha ha. After having the children I have been through a confidence crisis as Frodo bucked me off(Monkey Arab behavior and I was not riding fit at the time having just had a baby). Had to put the training on hold for a while due to this and lack of time. Now the kids are a little less dependent I am working daily with my horses again which is great. My confidence is coming back slowly, so am riding the fine line of bringing on the young horses at the same time as trying to keep every experience positive for me and the horses and moving forward. My ultimate dream is to go to Flag is up Farm and do a course, but it may be a while still coz of the kids:( Its great to have the support of all of you and could spend my life on the Uni when I'm not with my horses. Ha ha Who's next!

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Oh my goodness! The Lost Soul and Helene your stories are so moving! Thanks so much for posting them. I was fighting back tears with yours The Lost Soul - I think I hate your father! Poor Ebony but it so good that Beamer has you and isn't it great to be in Monty's world. Helene your story cheered me up and I found it just fascinating - you certainly have faced some challenges with your horses so far. I admire you for managing to keep working with your horses while you have a young family. Good luck with the juggling act and stay safe.


thought i'd leave a comment as I am new on here.
Here goes:
My name is Sarah, i am 36, part time secretary, part time house wife. I have a cat, 2 dogs and my beautiful cob called Fred. i have been partners with my horse for almost 5 years, he is now 15.
he is a very confident horse in himself, which can at times be a good thing when dealing with my lack of confidence. however he does walk all over me at times if i start faffing. my husband also rides and helps look after my horse but is more confident than me and is also on board with Monty's teaching and methods.
i am dealing with a lot of fear and confidence issues on my part, which is why i have turned to Monty's methods for help. i am starting on my journey and am looking forward to creating an even better partnership with my boy. i have lots of reading and learning still to do but after seeing Monty live at the weekend i am full of enthusiasm and a lot of respect for such an amazing horseman.

there that's me!!

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Hi Sarah

Welcome! Nice to meet you; whereabouts in the world are you?


Hi Viccihh1 i'm based on the Northamptonshire/Buckinghamshire border in UK.


Hello, I joined the Uni about 2 weeks ago or so. My name is Paula and I live in California, USA. I own 2 mares one 24 Ginger, and 5 Lily. Both girls live in my back yard, a dream come true. My journey with horses has been interesting. I think it started with a plastic rocking horse in my playroom at home when I was 2. Then various pony rides etc. when I was 6 or 7 I visited my grand parents in Kansas and saw a pony in the field. I wanted to ride that pony. Took a bit of convincing for my dad to let me but finally he had someone go get him and bring him in. Sour ornery and didn't want little kids to ride him...oh well. We had a great time that day, my cousin and I ducking under the clothes line over and over again and getting bucked off. I'm sure my dad thought I was cured. Not so, as we lived in the city there were no real opportunities to ride but somehow they do come up. My first lesson was in Jr. High on a gelding named Sundance belonging to my best friend. Dad didn't know about that one. About that time my dad was working in a rural town and on 1k acres of a ranch building a camp ground. There were bison, a brahma bull, and we went to the BLM auction to buy burros. As the donkeys were being run around the pen, I spotted him a 9yr old Jack, love at first sight. Had to have that one. Since we were to buy 10 dad let me have the "old one" haha. I spent many weeks taming and getting him to trust me. I'd put out their feed and step back, every time they let me get closer and closer, til I could touch Jack. Yup a stallion wild burro, whom I did not fear, never scared and just waited. He eventually let me put a halter on him and back him, I never had a corral, or arena, just 1k acres that he could run away if he wanted. He never did. He let me ride him calmly and safely always taking care of me. My dad wanted to see if it was me or just my hair and clothes so he dressed my niece up in my clothes we were the same coloring and size, Jack would have nothing to do with her. He left. He was mine, or I was his. He sired many baby donkeys and lived a long life. Around this same time, I was about 14 there were other ranch horses that were sometimes ridden, Angel being one of them, a Large grey mare, The day I rode her, she decided to try and take me off under a tree, scraped my eyebrow a bit but I got back on and rode anyway. No way I wasn't when I had the rare permission.You see, my dad didn't want me on anything that could think for itself. I guess he was afraid. It took until I was 28 and a mother of 2 before I started riding again, on the rent string, every week, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends it was fun. My little daughter 4 at the time asked me "mommy, when do I get to ride?" I told her she had to be 6. she waited, just after her 6th B-day she let me know," I'm 6 now mommy, when do I ride?" Today at 26 she's an assistant hunter jumper trainer in Sacramento, and my horse life went into full throttle for a little horse crazy girl. During her growing up, I worked for the trainer, taught lessons, groomed, anything to keep her in the saddle, it was great. Her first show pony Lyka was the love of my horsie life, although I wasn't to own her until the last 9 years of her life I loved her everyday! I told the story of Ginger and how we got her on another thread and at the same time I bought/was given a gelding Kezarrad. Arab, Kemosabe grandson. He was 20, lived to 29 and gave me a great challenge and broke my confidence in myself. He was too smart and I didn't know enough. He had great care and was a lesson horse and I rode him, in an arena until 2 months before he passed. That was 3 years ago and Lyka 10 months later. Just after that we moved to a small farm where I could keep horses at home. Ginger moved in and I got her some goats for company. I always wanted a Palomino mare, small stature horse. On one of the rescue sites there was a picture of a little mare, at auction. I went to see...I had all of 3 minutes to look her over and didn't see her again until she was ridden in for the auction. Saddled, bridled, and somehow not lame. They rode her bareback as well. Although she didn't look drugged, I'm guessing she was due to the fun I'm having with her now. They said she was 10..nope she's 5. Sweet as can be, has a bit of speed on her when you can get her to go. Which is not while I'm in the arena with her. This is a true adventure for me. I read Monty's book when we first go our horses, and used his principles mostly, I don't use whips on horses, just on the ground as move forward aids, only the bluntest spurs and that very infrequently as I know I would't want them poking me. I am starting from the ground up and making good progress. I know this is long so thank you for reading. Looking forward to many good lessons in the Uni and making new Horse-mad friends throughout the world. Oh, also, I am and artist and own my own art instruction school where I teach drawing and painting to children and adults. and am 48 going on 30. Glad to be here!

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Thanks cobgirl and studio_me for posting your introductions. Great to have you with us and to know a little more about you both.

eternal_student NSW
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Hello beautiful people, I thought I'd finally bite the bullet and tell my story, lol.
My name is Megan and I am from country New South Wales, Australia. I was born loving & wanting animals, particularly horses. I remember my first trip to Sydney when I was about 5, driving through the outer suburbs seeing an expanse of urban houses as far as the eye could see, and a distinct swell of sadness and pity in me for all those "poor people" who "had to" live in those houses, clearly without their own horses, lol!
I always found horses to ride even if it was sneaking into other people's paddocks when I was very young, going bareback with a piece of twine around the neck.
When I was 14 I got my first job and by the time I was 15 I was able to purchase the horse I rode during lessons, whom I loved dearly, from my instructor for $500. We only lived about 2km from my instructor, so I brought my horse home and had a sometimes fun, sometimes stressful 6 months with him, but it didn't work. We didn't really have anywhere for him to live, as the whole property was dedicated to my Dad's business and the horse would just roam around, windsucking the office and getting in customer's faces haha! I had little to no help and was unable to provide for him properly. Recognising that my horse was not thriving I asked my instructor if I could put him back at his place. The words I used were something like "Can you take him back to your place", when what I should have asked for was an ajisting arrangement. But I had no idea what I was doing or what could happen (nor did my mother), and my instructor took it to mean something different, or so he said. I continued to have weekly lessons on my horse as per normal, until one day my instructor showed up at home and found me in the office. I remember his smiling, weather-lined face saying "Hello, Megan", as he slid $50 across the window sill towards me. Too surprised at his presence to be polite and confused at the money, I just asked him what the money was for. He replied that he had sold my (beloved) horse. I just stared at him, perplexed, so he tried to explain that he had told me that he didn't have room for him at his property. I asked "Well who did you sell him to?", and he laughed at me, rolling his eyes, waved the $50 at me and said "Who do you think?! This is what you got for him."
There's a period of my life from that point to about a month after it where I don't remember a thing that happened. All I know is that The Man Who Listens to Horses saved me. It brought me out of an extremely dark place and caused me to turn that desperate sadness into rock solid determination to save as many other horses from his fate as I could. When I was 14 I had attended Monty's demonstration in Newcastle. I bought a few of his books and 2 long lines and stood in a queue for ages just to speak to him. I was such a fan that I was so overwhelmed! I can't remember what was said, all I remember was a brain explosion! (Haha I am so lucky that Barry Humphries wasn't there at the same time! What a day that must have been, Vicci! :D ) Still, to this day, being so close to MONTY ROBERTS is one of the highlights of my life! Up there with my wedding day and my first join-up LOL. I still have these long lines and every time I use them (every day) I think of that time when I bought them! I have all his videos, the a few DVDs, merchandise, all the books and some eBooks, a few pages of which I read every time I go to the bathroom LOL. My husband says I'm obsessed with Monty, but it wasn't until he started counting the amount of times that I say "Monty Roberts says..." each day that I started to believe him HAHAHA!
Anyway, I digress (easily)... So yeah, academia swept me away from horses for a long time there. I was (/am) very gifted in that area and my parents tried to convince me that there is no money in horses & that I needed to go to uni to study something 'proper'. I allowed them to because I enjoyed studying, I still kept horses on the side and I thought that a ludicrous career could be a cash cow for my passion. I studied engineering for 7 years and also studied horses on the side in that time, including attending an MR clinic with Rob Horne, who I would LOVE to go to more (but I am now a day's drive away) (oh, and when I was there, Rob said that Monty was at his house and sat at the table we were sitting at, so I went around and sat on every chair just to make sure that I sat on a chair that Monty once sat on! OMG! hahaha!).
To date I have only 'saved' 2 ex-pacers & retrained them to saddle, but I have only been out of uni for 18 months. Something interesting that I have noticed though is that all those years of quietly studying MR, anatomy, a few lessons, psychology etc. has given me more knowledge than I thought I had and a huge head start in the practical aspect. I can see things around me at the stables (in the small town that I live in) that other people cannot, have just started my own horse with surprising ease, and I seem to be able to offer solutions to everyone (more to my surprise than theirs).
I am 27 now, have a husband and a beautiful stepdaughter (who is coincidentally into horses too) and we are looking to add to our family. I was going to rely on my other passion, music, to provide for us if we have young children, but in the past few weeks, random fleeting visions of huge stable compounds, undercover arenas and herds of beautiful horses under my care have come to me. I think I'm starting to entertain the idea that I might be able to save more than one horse a year... I'll keep you posted ;)
-Megan :)

Horse addict (From the good old USA)
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Hi Megan! Great story!


Hi Megan
Glad you shared...also glad you stayed in the horse world.


Hi everyone, my name is Duane. I have my first horse a 2 year old Bay Roan Quarter Horse. I do love to ride though, Western style.

eternal_student NSW
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Hi Duane :)
Lol, thanks guys. I'm glad it made sense, too, I think I was half asleep when I wrote it lol.

The Lost Soul (Northeastern Wisconsin, USA)
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Sometimes I find that it is easier to talk about oneself when you are half asleep lol.

Horse addict (From the good old USA)
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Lol! Me too.

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Thanks for posting, Megan. Loved your story. It brought tears to my eyes when that pig of a man sold your horse. At least now that will never happen again. Well done with the ex-pacers too - made me think of Cash the ex race horse and how sad I am not to be able to continue to retrain him as he was responging so beautifully and such a delight to ride. Now however I have a new project which is keeping me challenged. Have two delightful girls whom I am working with in their quest to love and ride my horses. They have both joined the uni for me - one of my pre-requisites - and I have made up a 14 week program based on Monty's methods for us to follow - a few videos to watch each week. I still give Cash a hug and pat across the fence each evening when I feed my horses - he doesn't appear as if he has been worked at all since I had to finish off which is sad. Best news I heard yesterday was that the owners of the now famous, magnificent Australian race horse, Black Caviar have decided to retire her on her high of 25 straignt wins and allow her to be a brood mare. Wow! that was something I was praying for as I was so fearful that she would eventually break down on the race track. Just great to know her owners were caring enough and smart too! No doubt her foals will bring in millions for them - her brother was sold recently for $5million!

Hello! 2014 Cyberhunt winner 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed 300 lessons completed 350 lessons completed 400 lessons completed

Wow what a fantastic idea Kicki.

As you can see my name is Denea :) I've not long turned 30 and have been in love with any fur baby since I was in diapers.

I was fortunate enough that while still young (1 1/2 - 3 years) we were care taking a dairy farm just outside of Perth (Western Australia) and had a beautiful chestnut quarterhorse mare named Mary. Unfortunately she passed away of old age when I was 3 but would lay down and let myself and little brother and sister pull on her and once we were big enough she would very gently stand up and walk us in a circle around a nice soft sandpile.

Not long after that we moved into the city and I was unable to spend any length of time near horses again until I was 14 and my uncle decided it was time to put me on his off the track 16hh Thoroughbred and smacked it on the rear. Thankfully this didn't end in disaster but since then I have been unable to maintain a seat in an english style saddle.

In 2000 after graduating high school in Victoria I moved back to WA to live with my mum (family history is too long and upsetting to go into) and was able to get back in the saddle permanently. :) She had a wonderful little quarterhorse mare who was a granddaughter of our first horse Mary and was very intelligent. We would unlock the gates to the yards to the other horses and she would round them up, take them to the arena, wait for someone to close the gate and would free lunge them in both directions then keep them moving to cool down and cut them out and put them back where she found them while 'patrolling' to ensure there were no escapees while mum and I were re-locking gates.

At that time we also had a 16.2 Paint x Gelding who was just the sweetest boy ever (and our resident snake killer), a 14.2 Buckskin Appaloosa gelding (both of whom were 4-5), 3 thoroughbred mares and an amazing paint stallion who looked like he belonged in an old cowboy movie with an indian on his back :)

After losing our QH mare to a spider bite (be careful with spiders on the face of your horse) Mum and I sold off a couple of our horses and moved to a smaller property. About 6mths later I decided it was time that I bought my first horse and found a sweet little pinto mare that was in foal to a black and white stallion that needed rescuing as we were going through a drought and the property owner couldn't afford to feed all her horses. I spent the next 5 months getting her back into condition and later found out that she had been broken at 2.5 (she still had the hobble marks on her front legs) and this was to be her 5th foal. Thankfully she had a gorgeous little tri-colour pinto filly (Pebbles) that was attitude plus. After regaining her condition we discovered that her spirit had been crushed by her previous treatment and decided to keep her as a companion horse.

Mum and I parted when Pebbles was about 3 and mum moved to Perth with the herd while I focused on my career. I took Pebbles back a couple of years later and ended up selling her while going through a state of depression when she was about 7 and a half.

After another 2 year break (start of 2008) I had a friend that I worked with who mentioned that she'd rescued a bomb proof older thoroughbred boy who just needed to be loved. I took him on and it was the best thing for me to get my confidence back and stretch out all those muscles that you forget you have when not riding. I had him for 2 years when my husband decided he wanted one of his own and so we rescued a 2yr old SB colt that had effectively not been handled or fed properly. We had him gelded and were just starting to make some progress when unfortunately I had an accident at work and did some serious damage to my ankle. After 6mths of therapy the doctors decided it needed to be operated on.

After going through another 6mths of casts, physio and strengthening exercises I was given the all clear to get back in the saddle providing it was no more than once a week (this worked well as my boy was getting a bit sore and stiff and I was planning for his retirement) My husband and I then decided to leave Kalgoorlie and move to Perth as it was a better lifestyle for us and I always wanted to "come home".

We did this a few months later and brought our little SB boy "Digger' and moved into the agistment centre we are in now. (I've just passed 2 years :) ) After spending the time getting him into a fit condition to be started I attempted this process myself. Managed to get in a good 7 or 8 rides, off the line, at a walk before I realised that he was just not going to get to be big enough (At 5yrs was still only just 14hh)so looked into what else was available and found my dream horse in a 20mth Palamino colt out of Freckles Zest.

I brought him home from the stud last August and he turned 2 in October. I have sold Digger on and found him what I am hoping to be his forever home just before Christmas last year.

Since then I have realised I am not confident enough to start a horse myself and am on the hunt for a good trainer here in Perth or the surrounding area for FJ (Freckles Jubilee Boy) to go to in December while also on the lookout for somewhere I can get in a few lessons on a nice quiet horse to gain my confidence back.

He is coming along really well and now that we have seen the dentist I'm about to start his training to accept a bit with the goal of him accepting all the processes up to a rider for the first time before I get someone else to take that last step.

I have been a member for the last couple of months and have really enjoyed watching the lessons and reading some of the threads in the forum and can't wait to see where we go from here.

Thanks again Kicki. Looking forward to reading other comments.

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Thanks for posting, nice to know more about you. Good luck in your search for a good rider/trainer. If possible try to find one that is happy for you to watch so in that way you know exactly what happens and can say "no" if necessary.

karyn & tokia
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Hello, I started the online university 13 days ago. I really enjoyed reading about all of you, this is a great idea. I live in the USA, Colorado. I was born and raised in south west Wisconsin. I have always loved horses, and every Christmas All I ever wanted was just a little horse. We lived in town but had a huge back yard with a little stream through it. And lots of times there would be a couple of cows in a little pasture next to our property, so the village wasn't to picky on animals in town. Every Christmas morning I was disapointed to see no pony.

My mom always told me I took after her dad who loved horses too, and always had several. But he died long before I was ever in the picture. In gradeschool I had a friend who lived on a farm and I got to go out in the summer and spend a week, usually when my parents wanted to go on some sort of trip. Me and my friend would get in trouble for drinking milk out of the cooler, and trying to ride the calves....neither of us could catch the pigs. Then I noticed a big white horse walking in behind the cows as they were coming in to be milked. I was told the horse used to be ridden out to get the cows and now just does it on his own without a rider......rider? We got yelled at for knocking the heavy saddle down and was told not to go anywhere near that horse.....he was viscious. (right tell a little kid not to do something, just made us more determined to do it.) Alice figured out how to make a halter out of bale string and we led the horse to the fence and both got on. We sat there for a little while, the string was hanging we held onto the mane and waited for the horse to go get the cows. We were in heaven and the horse was gentle with us. We could go out as far as this little stream where the horse would make a little hop over it and then we would fall off. once on the ground we had to walk back because the horse would continue on his way to bring in the cows. Before the end of the week I was able to stay on without falling off and it was the most awesome feeling in the world.

I did see the horses reaction around his owner, alices older was like a different horse he would bite and kick and fight her. She drew blood beating him. One especially bad evening I rode the horse to the gate way out in the pasture, I was able to get it open and showed the horse my welts from being whipped too and did everything i could to get the horse to run away. I even got on him and tried to get him through the gate, if i could do it we could both run away from home. My brother ran away from home once and he was beat so bad I thought he was going to die. So I figured neither me or the horse wanted to risk being caught again if we ran away.

I'm 54 now and never got a horse until after my son graduated from high school, and got on a bus for California. I ended up selling everything and taking a uhaul across the US and moved to Colorado, just like all the westerns I loved growing us. I found my horse when she was 5 months old out in a 300 acre pasture.....the old cowboy said i could buy her for 1200.00 by giving him 100.00 a month, and during that time he would teach me everything i needed to know about horses......oh boy, wrong person to learn all I know about horses.

Tokia is 8 years old. The old cowboy who knew everything about horses let my horse get pregnant at 2....which ended that partnership and I took mare and baby boy to town to a stable. The hubby had a fit and i had to give the baby away or sell him. was able to find the perfect person. Donated the baby, Batido to a handycapped ranch. Batido gives little handicapped kids rides and lots of happieness.

As for me, I'm an artist, been a photographer for a high school, taught kids how to take pictures for the yearbook and darkroom work for 20 some years. Painted pictures for Church. Worked for a photography studio, training, setting up studios, traveling all over helping out studios in Michigan.

Since starting the university 13 days ago, I have packed away a lot of my tack, bought the dually halter and new brushes and hoof pick....I have a wood stove and now i need to make a bonfire out of all my nasty rope halters, maybe even the cribbing collar, my lounge whip, and not sure what else. I was going to pack everything up and take them to the thrift shop, but it sounds like I am going to burn them or someone else will use the stuff to abuse their horses.

My biggest problem during my stay at the stable is all the brute horsepeople. And noone to ride with. One guy looks at me oddly as I train with the dually halter, he thinks its a waste of time, she knows how to lead around, get on the horse and make her work. I was also caught doing mounting block exercises, and he had simular comments, and couldn't figure out what I was doing. Good thing this guy works during the day so I can work my lessons. I'm doing as many ground exercises as I can. I had knee problems so I'm gradually going to get back on my horse.

The Lost Soul (Northeastern Wisconsin, USA)
Hello! 100 lessons completed

You have been through a lot, Karyn. I have said this before, though. Before you decide to have a bonfire with all of your old tack, remember that it is not the tool, but the hands that hold it. Anything that you use with a horse (including a water pipe or chain) is fine as long as it is not used to cause pain. Although I have yet to figure out what a pipe or chain would be used for...
I know how it is dealing with people that do not understand, I think there are many here that can relate. The best suggestion I have heard is to lead by example. And ALWAYS stick to your ideals, I paid dearly once for giving in to someone else. It took months and many equine teeth marks to undo the damages that took only seconds to do, because I listened to one of those "brute horsepeople".

MaggieF, Melbourne - Australia
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Just brought ' Introductions' up again as I was hopeful that some of our new members may care to add theirs . Found your story for the first time Karyn & Tokio. Such a long hard journey for you to horses. So pleased that you have finally found Tokia. Do hope it is all going well.

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Hi everyone, it's nice to know you a bit better!

I grew up in France and 10 years ago moved to Western Australia (hence my username, Australia + Alizee (my name)).
I have been on horse's backs since I was 10, in a small countryside club so I have never competed but my love and passion for horses keeps growing (but now my centre has developed well!). All my life I've been wishing I could do more with them. One of my dreams was to be a horse trail guide ^^ When I moved to Australia I continued taking group lessons for a while, then private lessons, but I didn't feel like my teachers were pushing me very much. So I stopped and just went riding with a friend who has a few horses, we'd ride out in the bush for a couple of hours which was great fun!
Then I took my first big step and leased my first horse, in 2012 & 2013, after which he was found ill and was put away on spell in another farm. I was heartbroken as we accomplished so much in these couple of years and I felt we had a relationship.
In September 2015 I found another horse to lease, Derek, who is on my current profile picture and just turned 4. I've managed to see him about 3 times a week, and I've been impressed how much progress we've made in groundwork, which I've worked a lot on with him (saddle work less progress). He has the sweetest nature and he is gorgeous but his manners are terrible x) therefore all the groundwork I'm doing. At the moment I still go to see him maybe once or twice a week.
Now that I have just finished my uni studies (Master of Biomedical Sciences), I wish to 'dedicate' this year to horses, which started well as my parents offered me the subscription to this uni for the year and I've nearly finished all the lessons already x) I'm also reading and researching a lot about horsemanship. I have also been applying for positions as a working student to have the opportunity to do more work with horses and am just trying to get that organised.
My aim is quite simple, to have as much exposure to horsemanship as possible, so I can be a better horsewoman as I would like to have my own horse in the future.

So this is me, well the horsey-side of, and it's a pleasure discussing with you all!

Rahni (Sydney, Australia)
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Good on you for bumping this thread Maggie!
Welcome Australizee :)
I tend to read more than I post these days, but I look forward to seeing you around the forum!

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Brilliant Idea Maggie!
Wow Alizee, I wish there were more horse people like you in the world, fantastic attitude to learning and all before you own a horse!
Whatever you do be it just ride for fun or go into competitions every horse you meet will be a pleasure to be with and they will be glad they found you.

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Hi, Karyn; Where in CO. are you? I live near Fairplay (actually, between Hartsel and Como) and would love to meet with people in CO. who are in tune with Monty's methods. Don't know how to connect; my email is slowpaddlesharon@gmail. Would enjoy the contact with you,, phantommustang and any others. Sharon

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Thank you all for your lovely messages :)

SOequine (Derbyshire, UK)
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Hi all, I've been here a month now so I thought it was about time I said hi :-) tbh I have been so totally engrossed watching the lessons for every spare minute of every day that I haven't had time to give the forum a look in!! So now I am popping up for air to introduce myself :-D
I can not begin to tell you how much I love the Uni, why didn't I join up earlier?!

I've been a Monty fan since I was about 12 years old, I'm now thirty-erm-something...
I have three horses, Jason an 18yo Anglo-Arab, Ferdy a 4yo Hanoverian and Minnie an 18yo Connemara. I worked extensively with horses when I was younger, the highlight was working on a Hanoverian stud in America, where I fell in love with the breed.

When I returned from America I helped people with their horsey problems, and I had enormous success, this was how I came about owning my horse Jason.
(Jason's story )
I soon found myself as the last resort for dangerous horses and after a few mishaps (if you can call near-death experiences mishaps!) this soon lead to a huge loss of confidence, at its worst I was unable to simply walk into a field with quietly grazing horses, I was a mess!

My confidence improved over time, but we set up a non-horsey business and for the next decade horses became a part-time hobby for me.
Then in 2012 I watch Carl and Charlotte at the Olympics, and in my excitement I started horsey shopping - naturally! I searched the internet for Hanoverian breeders and found a gorgeous foal and I knew he was "the one", imagine my delight to discover that little Ferdy was just 1.5 miles from my home! I hadn't even known the stud was there!

So now Ferdy is four years old, and after doubting my own abilities, and doing the sensible thing of trying out "professional" trainers (who did nothing but cause me problems to fix!) I am now training him myself, and I am sooo sooo grateful to monty and the team who have put this Uni together, it has given me enormous confidence and all the tools I need, I know I can do this, and Ferdy is the proof of the pudding - he is being a total superstar every step of the way :-D
I have got an excellent rider lined up for him too, he came over from Ireland and is called Ardall !! it's a dummy! sorry my humour is rubbish :-D

In 2008 I was a helper for Monty's UK demo at Arena UK, I was asked to stand next to him whilst he signed books (not sure that I resemble a bodyguard all that much!) but I was too dumbstruck to even say hi! haha

Last month I attended Kelly Mark's course Perfect Manners in the UK, and next week I am booked in for the Five Day Foundation course, very excited!

I have a facebook page
This is Ferdy's first Join-Up (far from perfect technique on my part, but I can handle constructive criticism!)

Sophie x

dionne4210 - Denmark.
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Hello one and all.

My name is Dionne Møller, i am 46 years old in number and 15 years old in spirit.
I am mum to my son 14 years old, and my daughter 16 years old, I am twice married.
I was born in Leicestershire UK.
I am an ex British police officer, rape trained, a class 2 police driver, I have an HGV license ( heavy goods vehicle) bus license and Turing bus license. ( love to drive ). I ended my career in the force in the CID, I have been witness to extraordinary things, murder, rape, suicide, arsons, traffic accidents, dead kids.. You name it I've seen it - the worse side of the human race.
I'm going to try and keep this short, but it will be difficult.
I was awarded a medal from Tony Blair prime minister at that time, in a brave officer of the year award ceremony.
My mum and dad divorced when I was 10, I lived with my alcoholic dad until I was 18, at 20 I. Joined the police force and was at that time one of the shortest officers on the force, I'm only 5' 2" tall.
My mum died from cancer when I was 22.
My older brother started drinking after my mums death, and is today an alcoholic.
I moved to Denmark at 29 and started my family, got married and subsequently divorced.
My daughter at 12 years old, suffering from teasing at school was admitted to a psychiatric hospital for 3 months, she has some learning difficulties and at time was suicidal due to the teasing.
And so the horse story starts..
When she was released from the hospital,I bought a 17 year old mare for my daughter, my gamble that a horse would help her mentally ( like a dolphin) paid off 100 percent. She now rides dressage and is very good at it, she is now thriving at a new school and the problems have diminished,though some remain.
I got bitten by the horse bug and my husband bought me a Welsh cob for my 45 th birthday.
I named this 3 year old pony Shilo, his name is taken from. Neil Diamond song also called Shilo, and if you read the following lyrics to that song, you will understand why.


Young child with dreams,
Dreaming each dream on your own,
When children play,
Seems like you end up alone,

Papa says he'd love to be with you,
If he had the time,
So you turn to the only friend you can find,
There in your mind,

Shilo when I was young,
I used to call your name,
When no one else would come,
Shilo you always came
And we played.

Young girl with fire
Something said she understood,
I wanted to fly,
She made me believe that I could.

Held my hand out, and I let her take me
Blind as a child
All I saw was the way that she made me smile,
She made me smile.

Shilo when I was young,
I used to call your name
When no one else would come,
Shilo you always came
And you stayed.

In November last year I was diagnosed with spinal stenosis, and I had a serious operation on in spine, in my neck. They put in some titanium plates and screws, so I'm not working at the moment.
I expect to be operated on again in a few years as it is a degenerative disease.
On top of that, I have 3 herniated discs in my neck.
I spend my days caring for my 4 horses, 2 dogs and a cat, and of course my family, and I'm very happy.
I was told once upon a time that I was too head strong, too independent and too ready to build walls around myself to isolate myself, people used to say to me " you can't do this and that and the other" and I set out to prove them all wrong - and I did.

Somebody said to me recently that it was stupid of me to buy such a young horse and train him myself. - YOU CANT DO THAT - WHAT ABOUT YOUR SPINE ....BLAH BLAH BLAH - well, I did, and I am continuing to do so.
Shilo has peeled back the layers, you cannot be anything other than genuine if you want to be with Shilo, he can look into my soul, and he has.

You can just about achieve anything you want in this world- you just have to want it enough.

My daughters horse Amira, saved her life, and Shilo my pony rescued me from myself.


vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Hi Sophie
Great to meet you; you will love Kelly's course I'm sure, it's a long time since I did it but it was great.
I've watched your video I can see all the "Kelly moves" and you clearly are trying to follow what she taught - it's a little 'rough round the edges' but aren't we all?! We have to do hundreds and hundreds to get anywhere near Kelly's skill level :-0
Ferdy is a lovely looking boy. Let me ask you what may seem a stupid question but bear with me. What made you decide to do Join Up with him?

SOequine (Derbyshire, UK)
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Hi Vicci,
Great to meet you too! I'm so sorry for my slow reply.
I am heading down to Oxfordshire this Sunday, and once I have got over the panic of leaving my husband to take care of himself and our four dogs and our business, I am sure I will have an amazing time :-D
You are too kind with your comments regarding Ferdy's Join Up video, thank you! I did cringe quite a lot whilst watching it back but decided to share it anyway. I am flattered that you can even see ANY "Kelly moves" at all haha!
The most embarrassing thing to admit is that in my younger years I have done Join Up a zillion times, whoops. Now I am attempting to do it with the Monty/Kelly methods and I look quite mechanical, but I'll improve with practice, I hope! When I first did Join Up I was about 9 or 10 years old, this was the early nineties and of course it didn't have the name "Join Up" then, I had no idea what I was doing, I only knew that I had very good four legged relationships! Then I used it with some very dangerous horses and it transformed them beyond belief. So now I am learning the technique, nothing like doing things backwards, eh?!

I don't think your question re doing Join Up with Ferdy is stupid at all, actually it's funny you should ask me that... afterwards I did question as to whether I had needed to do it, although I am definitely intrigued as to why you ask! Ferdy was always a perfect student for me from dot, but after he recently had some shall we say "incompetent handling" at a yard, it had brought out some naughty bahaviour. When he came back into training I decided to do Join Up with him because I felt it would be a good starting point, and I suppose to prevent any lingering naughty/dominance behaviour, but afterwards I felt that he was in fact already joined-up with me simply through good handling and a good relationship, if that makes sense?
Sorry, I prattle on...

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Hi Sophie
It makes perfect will find that I have "prattled on" many times on this forum about the fact that Join Up is a philosophy, using an applied process that is used to build a relationship not just a technique to practice on our horses at a whim. If we are already joined up with our horses it can make them anxious and antsy because there is no point in sending them away and they don't understand why. However, you have analysed it really well and you've used it to re-establish some lost boundaries. Looking forward to hearing al about your course :-) Enjoy!