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Rick Gore Interview, Part II

Published: 10/24/2014
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Editor's Note: Most folks tell you only what you want to hear. Then, they try to sell you something.
Rick Gore does neither.  
Rick Gore is not soft-spoken or politically correct. He does not hesitate to call out bad form. In more than a decade of running Think Like A Horse, he’s acquired plenty of enemies.

But he’s got legions of fans, too. The former Air Force canine trainer and California cop has more than 38,000 followers on You Tube, a popular website, and facebook page.
He attracts viewers and readers with his no bullsh*t approach. The man has no patience for those doing bad things to horses and he’s not afraid to dress down anyone, not even Linda Parelli or the population he calls "Barn Witches."

Read Part I

We feature Rick Gore in this multi-part interview:

NN: Many clinicians get to where they are because they are good with horses. But many of them aren’t good with people. In your own way,  you distinguish yourself because you’re good with both.

RG: Yeah, I think a lot of horse people tend to be on the crazy side. I don’t know which came first, the chicken or the egg, because being around horses, for me, teaches common sense. It teaches survivability. It teaches different things that you need to understand or you’re going to get hurt. It forces you to pay attention. People are so used to being taken care of, not being accountable. With horses, if you’re that way, you’re going to learn a hard lesson. Horses force us to become more attuned to them, to ourselves, and to our environment.

NN: When did you own your first horse? [At right, a fan's computer image of Mr. T. and Buddy]

RG: I’ve never bought a horse. Never sold a horse.
Buddy, 10, was given to me. Mr. T, who is 22 or so, was given to me.
I got Mr. T first. He was what was called a Three Striker mustang. Had several different owners. They’d keep him for a while, said he was crazy and going to kill somebody, and bring them back.
After the third time, the BLM wants to put them down saying the horse is crazy when in fact 9 times out of 10, it’s just because they had crazy owners or owners who didn’t know what they were doing. They got scared and taught him bad lessons.

The first time I rode Mr. T, he was in a long shank bit with a tie-down and crazy and wild. He was going to kill somebody. After a while, I got rid of that bit and the guy who owned him said ‘no one else is going to ride him. He’s just going to be a pasture horse. If you want him, I’ll give him to you.’

Buddy was staying with a lady who was a breeder.  He got kicked in the mouth as a baby. His teeth are crooked. ‘You want him, you can have him,’ she said.

NN: Do you have a goal or mission with Think Like a Horse?

I started Think like a Horse because I like horses. I got so tired of seeing horses so misunderstood and abused or mistreated. Not necessarily intentionally. Everybody wants to talk about intention. I don’t really care about intent. I care that a horse is having a bad life or is abused. I don’t care about intent to love it or intent to abuse it, it’s still not a good life for the horse.

I started the site about 13 years ago because I was seeing what Parelli and all these big name people were doing. The only way to get the information was to pay out big bucks. You gotta buy their equipment. You gotta buy their DVDs. You gotta to join their club. Pay a fee.

That’s kind of ridiculous.

I started it as an information site to where somebody who didn’t have money could access the Internet, find out a different perspective and maybe understand what these guys are saying.
I think all horsemen say the same thing. If you understand a horse, it’s not a mystery. You can put different terminology on it, but you’re going to get the same result if you understand a horse. If you understand a horse, it’s not a mystery. You can put different terminology on it, but you’re going to get the same result if you understand a horse.

I put a venue out there so if you want to understand a horse at least from my perspective. I think I’m pretty successful with horses. Most horses say I’m pretty successful with them. I put it out there to help. It started out as a three-page little site, as it started growing, answering questions…That’s why I did a site.

It’s a hobby site. I definitely don’t generate an income.

Read Part I

View Reader Comments:

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10/25/2014 Joel
Since I discovered Rick, I look back and have to laugh at all the crazy DVD's I was watching of people chasing their horse endlessly in a round pen with a carrot stick. Watch him once and you will be hooked. He cuts through the BS and it is so obvious he is only in this for the horse.
2/5/2015 Astrid
He's my favourite.100% genuine,there to help make life better for horses.Such is the only worthwhile outcome,the only worthy thing to strive for.Too many Horses have suffered and still are suffering under human domination.They deserve so much better,forever.
2/11/2015 bucky
How is it that someone who has all this knowledge can't ride ( watch some of his mounted videos)you become good at anything through experience,so he should be able to have good hands,feet,arms,seat and balance,I think he has studied a lot of other trainers and repeats their information as his fist hand knowledge and why does he not have any pics or videos of horses he trained years ago or friends or neighbors horses, maybe a colt or two, he has nothing,seems like a dog trainer wanna be cowboy,if I'm wrong would love to see evidence of a clinic or anything to prove me wrong......chaps and hat does not make you a cowboy or trainer sorry.
2/12/2015 Barbra
Well this series of interviews made me laugh - just proves that you can fool some of the people all of the time doesn't it
3/21/2015 hayley
anyone who is against rick is either too self proud, doesn't understand horses or isn't willing to try....he s great, talks complete sense and I love the gut, brightens up my days, if I could go and have a coffee with him and shoot the breeze I'd be happy!!!
1/17/2016 Anja
I can't believe how many negative comments on him and his thinking. I always watched old people and the way they treated their horses the old way (like ... beating to listen, bits, spurs, yelling, pulling on the reins...) and I always knew that CAN'T be the only can't be the right way. So, I found Rick. I can say, he saved my life or actually he saved lives of many horses that I thought or I had. In the past, I was also like those old people until I found Rick. I didn't know hot to read a horse before him. I was just riding and taking care of them, that was it. period. But then EVERYTHING changed. In every situation I was looking on horses from their perpective, like they see it, not like I used to see it. And I can't even believe from where all of those negative comments are coming from. My opinion is.... if you don't understand Rick, you simply DON'T understand HORSES. Because from the way I see it... Rick is one of the best out there who is not charging for his knowledge and is happy to share his experience with us. It doesn't cost you anything, just time to understand his videos and time to actually watch them all. And if you don't understand something or don't know how to approach something you can just send him a message, I am sure he will respond, unless you are just a big dummy :) I really hope I will meet him one day, he is a legend for me and he is the first person who actually opened my eyes with horses. So I could never thank him enough. Love you Rick, Anja
2/2/2016 David Cooper
In response to both part 1 and 2, you Rick Gore haters post demonstrate that your argument is based soley on hate. Not one of you, especially the "professional horseman" (TX equine), fail to make a single point in which Mr. Gore is wrong regarding horsemanship. Instead, you throw personal bomb attacks because you cannot prove Mr. Gore is not a horseman. If you don't like his table manners, then don't watch his videos. Consider the source, if all you can do is make personal attacks unassociated with horsemanship, then it is you who are a wart on Mr. Gore's rear. Nothing more indeed.
4/3/2016 Mark
Well put David Cooper. I need say any more.
5/17/2016 Astrid
So glad to read the recent positive comments. It's such a shame when arrogance and ego diminish intelligent insight and understanding. It's about the horse,not petty human egos.Some people seem to have their priorities messed up...
5/17/2016 Astrid
So glad to read the recent positive comments. It's such a shame when arrogance and ego diminish intelligent insight and understanding. It's about the horse,not petty human egos.Some people seem to have their priorities messed up...
6/4/2016 Rattler
Rick and His Horse are on the same wavelengh.If Buddy and Mr. T could speak They would call You nay sayers Idoits. They communicate so well,Zen of horse and man as one.get over Yourself
1/4/2017 Bonnie
I don't understand at what point Rick's message got mixed up. He has claimed, from day one, to be an advocate for the horse. Everything he does and says is for the horse. He has never once claimed to be a horse trainer that can make you and your little pony Pinky, have a ribbon winning ride. He has only ever offered information to help you better understand horse behavior, so in turn, you can better understand what you are doing with your horse that can lead to a successful relationship with less chance of getting their fool butt hurt nut more importantly, a horse gets to enjoy a horse's life. It just galls so many people that Rick has the guts to demand that the horse come first and you and your desires come second. That speaks volumes right there.

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    "There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man." - Winston Churchill