Starting with a pony he had as a child, a growing love of
all things equine has come to dominate Chris Brisbane’s
Brought up on a mixed livestock and arable farm in
Shropshire and learning the craft of stockman from his
parents and grandparents he developed an intuitive feel for
the behaviour of the animals in his charge.
was during his stay in Australia that he was given his first
introduction to horse whispering by a visiting American
horse whisperer. Subsequently he studied with renowned horse
whisperers Pat Pirelli, John Lyons, Ray Hunt and Buck
Before you can do anything with a horse it must respect
you, this respect must be earned. One of the major problems
in the UK is the military tradition of using pain to train
Chris believes that if you ask a horse to do
something for you and it does it, you should then reward it
with comfort, not hurt it because it fails to
"perform". The horse also needs constant reassurance.
You can’t earn a horse’s respect by using a device
to tie it down; this will cause the horse to expect to feel
pain when something "goes wrong". If the horse becomes
frightened it will want to run - the more you act like a
predator the more it will become afraid. Being followers by
nature, horses need leadership. Being a leader in this case
isn’t achieved by being a boss or master, it's done by
simply treating the horse as its own mother might.
half of Chris's time is spent working with the horse on the
ground. Through repetition of exercises the horse learns to
overcome the things that it is afraid of. Then the rider is
taught 'natural horsemanship'.
Chris's observed that a horse will achieve the level of
the person riding it – or, as Chris might say - "Put a
bad rider on a good horse and the standards drop."
As well as dealing with problem horses, and cases of
cruelty, he has rescued animals with severe phobia of
human-contact brought on by neglect.
Chris offers services for clients throughout the U.K. and
"A horse is like a blackboard and you can rub out all the bad bits
- with an old horse it just takes longer."