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Imprint Training of the Newborn Foal

A Swift, Effective Method for Permanently Shaping a Horse's Lifetime Behavior

By Robert M. Miller

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Format: Paperback, 144 pages
Other Information: Illustrated
Published In: United States, 01 November 2003
Probably one of the most exciting and beneficial breakthroughs in equine psychology and training in the last decade has been the procedure the author calls "imprint training," the behavior-shaping learning process that occurs immediately after a foal's birth. Renowned veterinarian, clinician and lecturer Dr. Robert M. Miller researched, developed and presented these techniques to a world full of horsemen and - women eager to bond with their horses, understand them better and help them to live more comfortably and willingly in a world full of humans.
Dr. Miller, like most of us, was taught the conventional wisdom that excessive handling of newborn foals would result in spoiled foals and the risk of rejection by the mare. However, in over 30 years of veterinary practice, he found just the opposite. Foals he was forced to handle because of obstetrical emergencies turned out to be gentle and unafraid of him later on, and they recognized him. Horses, like deer, cattle, sheep and certain fowl, are a "precocial" species and are imprinted by what they see moving around them after they're born.
Dr. Miller experimented with his own foals, maximizing their handling at the time of birth to imprint them. He added desensitizing procedures and later conditioned responses to create "imprint training," a technique that¿ s now in use all over the world, with all breeds and other precocial species, as well.
This book contains Dr. Miller's theories and techniques, including step-by-step procedures involving bonding, habituation and sensitization. He discusses how to properly handle the mare before, during and after imprinting. There are subsequent sessions detailing how to tie andhalter-break the foal, and the added bonus of teaching performance basics that ultimately aid in under-saddle training. Dr. Miller also addresses problems and their prevention, plus the handling of special cases, such as race horses and mules.

About the Author

Robert Miller, D.V.M. is a world-renowned veterinarian, animal behaviourist, author, and lecturer. Since 1965, he's been a much sought-after speaker at universities and veterinary and horsemen's groups on various aspects of veterinary science and horsemanship. His lectures and seminars have been presented all over America, Europe, Australia, and Africa. He's also appeared as an expert witness in many court cases. His other books include Health Problems of the Horse, Revised Health Problems of the Horse, and Most of My Patients Are Animals, plus the video titles Influencing the Horse's Mind and Imprint Training of the Foal. He lives in Thousand Oaks, California. Horses

EAN: 9781585746668
ISBN: 1585746665
Publisher: Western Horseman Book
Dimensions: 27.38 x 20.68 x 0.97 centimetres (0.45 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years

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2 review(s)
All Reviews
Anna Birch on
Great Book really enjoyed it, great photography showing the correct steps to take when imprint training your foal it is a very clear and concise read that makes easy sense of the topic to fully understand the reasoning behind wanting to imprint a foal. I guess its then down to the individual to decide whether imprinting is the right approach for their foal.
Kay van Rijthoven on
Excellent; a book that you just cant put down. Highly recommended.

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