If you meet a horse and rider when you are out walking your dog, it is important to keep your dog under control so the rider can pass safely. Horses are prey animals, so their natural instinct is to run away from anything they perceive as dangerous. This flight response can be triggered by a dog barking, lunging on a lead or even approaching them suddenly. By teaching our dogs to act calmly we are acting responsibly and ensuring our dog does not put either horse or rider in danger.
So when you see a horse and rider:
Put your dog on the lead and move to the side giving maximum space for the rider to pass.
Turn your dog so she is facing away from the horse, focus on keeping her calm with her attention on you. This is best done using a toy or treat.
Once the horse and rider have passed and are a safe distance from you reward your dog.
Sue Williams Bsc. Chairwoman GODT (MT). MCFBA