Horses are generally all about consistency. In fact, most people are all about consistency too. It’s safe and comforting to know you have a routine, a set schedule and reliability of certain things happening during your day.
When it comes to training horses, consistency is really important and they really rely on it to understand you. Imagine you learning a new language and you know nothing to start. If somebody kept using a different word for “stop” like “halt” or “don’t go” or “freeze”, it can be confusing. Once the word stop is understood though, then that can be built on. Until then though, being consistent with one way can be a really good confidence builder and trust builder.
When it comes to a horse’s environment though, that changes a bit. I think it’s really important to shake things up consistently instead of keeping everything consistent. Within particular parameters of course. I would change a horse to a completely different facility every week, but I might change the paddock or field they hang out in. Maybe their paddock mate or mates or the time of day that training and/or exercise happens. These are all things that I think horses should be able to handle and is important to include in daily/weekly/monthly care.
In this video I talk about consistency in a horse’s life with their environment and how it can be helpful to have variety. Horses can be calmer and more confident in larger and different areas, better at managing different dynamics and just in general can stay active mentally for it instead of the hum drum of regular life on a set schedule to make a better all-round horse.