24 May 2009


It has been sometime since I considered Xenophon, and then tonight he popped into my mind. Although these are geared to horses, many of the same priciples apply to dogs too.

Xenophon’s Basic Training Principles

  1. Your horse should be a loyal friend, not a slave!
  2. Give its training as much attention as if it were your own child. Make sure that both body and soul of your horse are carefully trained. It should excel both in its capacity to perform and its reliability. Imprinting and influencing its character should be particularly important to you! Begin to imprint it when it is only a few days old to deeply trust you, respect you and obey you. Make your horse be philanthropic! It should downright love you.
  3. Teach it to love work and to voluntarily obey!
  4. Be cautious and considerate of its needs!
  5. Do everything in your power to understandably communicate with your horse.
    It should understand your “language”! Rewarding and punishment are the only instruments needed for its upbringing. But rewarding is absolutely the first priority. Reward every special performance and every progress in learning – the best way to reward it is to give it a break or stop work.
  6. Don’t bore your horse! Vary the work, offer the horse a variety of stimuli. Don’t ride it only on the track, but also train it in the open country, jump it and take it hunting.
  7. Work on training your own body and character! Make an effort to obtain a correct seat, independent of the movement of the horse, which allows you controlled guidance of the horse in every exercise, tempo and terrain. Your hand should on no account disturb the horse’s mouth. Train yourself to remain calm in all situations and to control your emotions. Leave no space for fits of rage.
  8. Realize that the exercises in high school dressage are not tricks you can teach your horse to do with the help of unnatural means of coercion. Rather, they are a horse’s form of impressive self-expression, shown to other members of its species when it is especially excited.
  9. Your horse should experience joy in its work and movements, and its posture should reveal its enthusiasm.
  10. Don’t try to collect and elevate your horse bridling it strongly backwards or using other means of coercion. Ride decisively forward with lightly applied reins, giving them in at the right moment.

http://www.tierklinik-karthaus.de/ Tierärztliche Klinik Domäne Karthaus
http://www.peter-kreinberg.de/ 'Do it with a gentle touch!'

Additional Information: (You will probably need a translator application to be handy.)
Die edle Kunst des Reitens Manoel Carlos de Andrade
(Original 1790)
Ecole de cavallerie - Schule der Reitkunst Francois Robichon de la Guerinière
(dt. Übersetzung 1942, Original 1733)
Gymnasium des Pferdes Gustav Steinbrecht (1884)
Die Reitkunst in ihrer Anwendung auf die Campagne-, Militär- und Schulreiterei Adolf Kästner (1886)
HDV 12 Heeresdienstvorschrift aus dem Jahre 1912
Die Grundsätze der Dressur Max Freiherr von Redwitz (1914)
Anleitung zur Dressur und Ausbildung des Pferdes Julius Walzer (1927)
Reiten Oskar M. Stensbeck (1931)
Reitlehre Wilhelm Müseler (1936)
Die Dressur des Reitpferdes für Tunier und hohe Schule Richard Wätjen (1936)
Von der Koppel bis zur Kapriole Waldemar Seunig (1943)
Grundzüge der Reitkunst Gustav von Dreyhausen (1951)
Vollendete Reitkunst Udo Bürger (1966)
Reitkunst am Scheideweg Erich Glahn (1956)
Die klassische Reitkunst Alois Podhajsky (1965)
Kavallerieschule Hannover Carl Friedrich Mossdorf (1986)
Dressurreiten Richard Wätjen (1986)
Meilensteine auf dem Weg zur hohen Schule Kurt Albrecht (1996)
Elemente der Ausbildung Kurt Albrecht von Ziegner (2001)
Praxisorientierte Anatomie und Propädeutik des Pferdes H.Wissdorf, H.Gerhards, B.Huskamp, E.Degen (2002)
Der Reiter formt das Pferd Udo Bürger/Otto Zitschmann (Neuauflage 2003)
Aus Respekt! Besinnung auf den Ursprung Anja Beran (2005)
30 Jahre Aufzeichnungen und Briefwechsel mit Nuno Oliviera Michel Henriquet (2005)
Die klassische Lehre Egon von Neindorff (2005)
Medizinische Reitlehre Dr. Robert Stodulka (2006)
S-Dressur Daniela Piolini (2007)
Verhalten und Pferdeausbildung Prof. Ulrich Schnitzer (ca. Mai 2008)
Roll-Kur - die Überzäumung des Pferdes Prof. Heinz Meyer (ca. Mai 2008)

Image: http://www.biblicalgreek.org/classes/images/xenophon_horse.gif

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