Ethics

Rediscovering horses, part 3 

Poaching the equine mind

When you train a horse, does that mean the horse is learning?

It's a fairly straightforward assumption to most of us that when we successfully train a horse to repeat a desired behaviour, that horse has learned something from our training. But to activist and cognitive ethologist, Dr. Francesco De Giorgio, it makes more sense to separate the topics of equine learning and equestrian training. After all, if we train a horse to step back, forward or sideways on command, the horse hasn't really learned anything new. We have just placed ourselves in control of how and when he repeats behaviour which he already knew. 

Watch this thought provoking interview to learn (!) why Dr. De Giorgio considers equine learning and equestrian training as separate - and even incompatible -  fields.

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