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How to Feed Horse Treats Without Forming Bad Habits

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It’s so much fun to feed your horse treats!  When you give your equine friend a treat, it tells him that he is loved and appreciated.  Treats not only reward good behavior, but they can be used effectively to train your horse on new skills.  So treat away, but keep in mind there are some basic do’s with horse treats that you’ll want to consider to ensure healthy, happy treating.

Do make sure the treats are good for your horse. The treats must be healthful and formulated especially for him with the right ingredients that not only treat him well, but stimulate his overall health.  Manna Pro’s Apple Wafers are a horse favorite, along with Apple Nuggets, Flax Snax and Apple Blasts.  You can also use apples, carrots, grain and hay – just make sure fruits and veggies are cut up so they don’t pose a choking hazard.

Do feed the right amount of treats.  You don’t want to give so many treats that you upset your horse’s digestive system or teach her to beg for treats.  After all, your time together is more than simply treat time. Make sure there is bonding time with your horse and that specific behaviors are rewarded by treats.

Do make certain your horse learns how to be respectful by taking the treat only when it is offered.  Establish a treating ritual that teaches your horse that the treat is only given if his behavior warrants it.  This means don’t just hand over his treat, but make sure his behavior is respectful. One way to train him on good treating behavior is to stand with the treat, but then only pet and talk to your horse.  After you’ve spent time together, ask your horse to walk away without giving him the treat.  If he respects your commands, then after a minute call him back and offer him the treat.  Make sure he eats it in way that’s polite.  If he starts to gulp down his treat, then stop and start the process over.  This way he knows the treat is gift that is associated with respecting your commands, not just given freely because he wants it in that moment.  Source: carolynresnick.hubpages.com/hub/How-to-treat-your-horse

Do keep her treat in your hand, not your pocket. Some horses will start to think treats are kept in pockets and will start to nose into every pocket looking for something yummy to eat. Don’t train your horse to be rude by teaching her bad habits.

Treats are a wonderful way to bond with your horse, just be sure you stay in charge of the treating behavior.  Your four-legged equine friend deserves your love, attention and even treats.  Breed those good treating habits and treating will be a well, treat, for both of you.



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