Barely Domesticated can be found everywhere!
I want to introduce you to my dear friend, Mandy Probyn, from Australia. She and her husband, Steve, came to America for 3 weeks this April and I thought it would be fun to get her perspective on her visit here for the first time.
They spent part of their time attending the School of Horsemanship with Eitan Beth-Halachmy, did some sightseeing, and even rode my Tim in a Cowboy Dressage™ Practice Gathering in Novato, CA.
Mandy and Steve brought so much to my life from Australia; some beautiful shirts, lots of laughs, horse training advice, a good cuppa tea (because, come on, we are savages).
Mandy is a horse trainer and clinician from Eungella Australia. She and Steve live in a remote and gorgeous rain forest which I’m told is a tourist destination. I believe I’ll have to find out for myself in the near future!
I asked Mandy a few questions to help you get to know her better……
|BD: You’re a very busy clinician. What kinds of clinics do you host?|
|MP: My speciality is Ladies Building Confidence with Your Horse Workshops. I am a firm believer that women can train their own horses with confidence, if given the right knowledge to do so. Due to either raising a family, accidents or age women can sometimes lose the confidence that once was in abundance in their youth. The workshops are a great place for likeminded women to get together share their stories and rebuild confidence with their horse, through groundwork and ridden exercises.
Children’s Horsemanship Clinics – I see it as a great privilege to be able to impart knowledge and help our next generation of horsemen and horsewomen build partnerships with their horses.
Foundation Horsemanship Clinics and Building on the Foundation Horsemanship Clinics – Groundwork and Ridden Exercises. If you horse has a good solid foundation he is set up for success in whatever discipline you choose to pursue. A well broke horse is a nice horse out on the trail also.
Cowboy Dressage™ – this is my passion, I find it very pleasing to find a discipline that does not compromise, but rather compliments my training methods and personal ethics. I am currently working through my Cowboy Dressage World Partnership Levels and excited to pursue as much training available to me in this area. I hold regular Cowboy Dressage Fun Days in my local area. It is such a joy to see others enjoying Cowboy Dressage™ with their horses and building some real partnerships with their horses.
I'm also offering Virtual Lessons to my students where they can send me a clip of their riding and I will provide feedback.
|BD: Tell me about your horses. What breed, age, and what do you do with them?|
|MP: I own 6 horses, each with their own strengths and challenges and each are useful in my program.
Bazil is a 8 year old Quarter Horse chestnut gelding. He is my main signature horse and demonstrates at my Horsemanship Clinics. He also performs liberty work, tricks like when he lies down and sits like a dog. He is one cool dude and we have a real unique bond.
Carmarla is 6 year old Quarter Horse Buckskin signature horse. She is learning the ropes from Bazil and will be a backup for Bazil to give him a break sometimes. She has already done a few clinics, and is a little gem.
Cowboy Jack is a 14 year old Quarter Horse Chestnut which came from our breeding. He is my husband's (Steve) horse. Steve will occasionally trail ride with him. Cowboy Jack gives lessons, and does some Cowboy Dressage.
Tia Maria With Hugs is a Quarter Horse bay mare who is a granddaughter of Clinton Anderson's mare "Mindy". Tia is another one of my signature horses, as well as my Cowboy Dressage Demonstration horse at my clinics.
Buddy is a 21 year old Quarter Horse Palomino I have owned for 18 years, and he was my breeding stallion, I used to show him in his younger years in the breed and color shows. He is now a gelding and is in semi-retirement with his herd. Buddy occasionally gives horsemanship/riding lessons and comes along to clinics when someone needs a horse to borrow.
I owe the entire direction change in my horsemanship to Buddy. He was a handful as a young colt and I began to search for other methods of horsemanship, which led me down the path of Natural Horsemanship and finding new way of communicating with my horses and building a true Equine Connection.
Kit is the matriarch of the herd, and as a 27yr old Quarter Horse mare, she is enjoying retirement on the ranch.
|BD: What did you think about your visit to America? What was the thing that surprised you most?|
|MP: What do I think of America? In one word: Awesome! It is a Cowgirls dream land, loved every minute of it. Great people wonderful sights, food and the best hostess ever, Sarah Dickinson. What surprised me the most was how welcoming people were. It was like we had known them for years. I will definitely be returning.|
|BD: How did you like riding and working with an American Mustang?|
|MP: I loved working with the American Mustang. I found them very responsive and super intelligent. My only regret was I could not bring them home to Australia with me.|
|BD: You’re now hosting tourists from the area at your ranch for a day of horsemanship. How is that going?|
|MP: We have just had our first group of lovely Singapore young people, who came for their very first experience with a horse whilst they were holidaying in Australia. I thoroughly enjoy sharing my love of horses with people and look forward to welcoming more people to the ranch.|
|BD: What other critters share your life, other than your husband and partner, Steve, and your children?|
|MP: Ernie, an Ecelectus Parrot, travels around with us to the Horsemanship Clinics. We place his cage on the viewing platform near the arenas and speaker and he repeats instructions I give to the clinic attendees. He is quite the entertainment for the day, although I am a little worried he will be able to do my job very soon.
We have two Border collies on the ranch, AJ and Tess. They are two old ladies now, 13 and 11, so a little slow and steady now with the ranch duties.
Our newest addition to the family is a Toy poodle puppy we named Texas Ted. He's 13 weeks old and is a little confused as to whether he is a border collie or a poodle, stalking Ernie the parrot like a real working dog. He attended his first clinic with us on the weekend, experiencing the life of a travel dog. I think he enjoyed all the attention.
You’ll be seeing more of Mandy in my blogs and more visits to America. I look forward to bringing some Barely Domesticated to Australia in 2017!
“My treasures do not twinkle or glitter, they glow in the night and neigh in the sun.” ~ Mandy Probyn