H. A Macpherson.

Haney's art of training animals : a practical guide for amateur or professional trainers online

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•■ Art of Training Animals. — A complete guide for amateur pro-
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Continued on Third Page of Cover,


3 9090 013 400 656

Webster FamHy Ubrary of Veterinary Medicir
Cummings School of Veterinaiy s\le(licine at
Tufts University
200 Westboro Road








^rmkiitg, f rntng miir Cratfjing nil Imh d%\\mh












No. 119 Nassau Street.

Entered according to Act of Congress in the year 1869, by Jessk

Haney & Co., in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the

United States, for the Southern District of New York.

Saney's Art of Traininsf Animals,

Electrotyped by
Smith & Jtfc^ougaty

82 and 84 Beekman Street, N. Y.

The intention of the present volume is to initiate the
reader into all the mysteries and secrets of the ^^ Art of Train-
ing Animals," and to give full and clear explanations of, and
instructions in, every branch of that art. It is believed that
the reader will find it acceptable whether he desires using its in-
structions practically either for profit or as an agreeable
recreation, or as merely a curiosity to know how the feats
herein described are taught.

This is believed to be the first and only attempt made to treat
this subject fully and systematically. Fragmentary articles
have occasionally appeared, and some works, treating of one or
another of the various animals, have given a few brief though
interesting paragraphs touching their educatability or sagacity.
Even combined these form but a comparatively meager collec-
tion, and the volume herewith presented has the essential part of
all this as well as a very large amount of matter which is en-
tirely new. The dim has been to make the book as complete as
possible, and to do this the author has profited by the experience
and writings of others wherever they could be made available.
He has, however, striven in all such cases to give full credit.
As far as it was possible to communicate with the parties in
f[uestion, their consent was explicitly obtained, and in no case to
the best of his knowledge (certainly not intentionally) has any
material been used contrary to the wishes of its owner, or with-
out due acknowledgment, and he would respectfully ask any
who may desire to make use of any part of his own labors to
a reasonable extent, the same courtesy of full credit to Haney's
Art of Training Animals.

To many gentlemen in the profession wc are indebted for


details of their experience, and material of various kinds.
Much of information relating to birds is derived from the works
of the celebrated German fancier Bechstem -, while to Mons.
Emil de Tarade is due a portion of that about the French dogs.
To Mr. Robert Jennings, whose works on the horse, as well as
on cattle, are deservedly popular, we are also indebted j also to
Mr. Smith of the New York* Courier.

While attempting to give plam practical instruction in the
art we profess to teach, we have also designed to make a read-
able book, and it is hoped that its perusal may. prove pleasant
as well as profitable. That money can be made by training
animals, is unquestionably true — even a boy can make his pets
more valuable by- teaching them a few simple tricks.

In conclusion we may add that to amateurs interested in the
subject, a visit to either of the really fine collections of trained
and wild animals of Van Amburgh or '^ Yankee'^ Robinson, will
prove most thoroughly enjoyable. To the proprietors of both of
these establishments we are indebted for valuable assistance.




DR. KEMP thus conc;sj]j and dearly wtatefi the difference
between instinct aud reason : ^^ In the furmer tkere is an
irresistible impalse to go tiirough a certain ^eii..s of motions
after a certain fashion, without Imowing why they are performed,
or what their result will be. In the latter the actions depend
upon previous mental judgmentSj are performed or not at will,
and the end of them is early anticipated and defined."

We believe the evidence is too strong to be doubted that
many animals do perceive the relation between cause and effort,
and that many of their actions, especially when the animals are
surrounded by the unnatural circumstaiaces of a state of domes-
tication, must be ascribed to the reasoning power. 'There was
a dog who Tived in a strict monastery where the monks dined
alone, and who, instead of asking for their meals, obtained them
by knocking at the buttery door, the cook answering by opening
the door and pushing the allowance through. The dog observed
this proceeding and accordingly knocked at the door and laid in
wait until the meal was placed outside, and the door shut, when
he ran off with it. This he repeated a number of times.

The contrast between instinct and reason is displayed in the
coursing of hares. If an old and a young grayhound be em-
ployed we ha 76 examples of both instinct and reason. The
young one instincfvely pursues his game, following every turn
and winding, Avhile the old dog, reasoning from past experience,
knows that the. hare will double, and accordingly does not
exactly follow her, but goes across A similar example is
afforded by the dogs employed in hunting the deer in. South
America. The newly impoi*ted dog, in approaching the deer,
flies at it in front and is often injured by the concussion. The


native dogs have learned to avoid this danger and they invariably
l:eep from the front, and attack from the side or rear.

Instances might be multiplied indefinitely, but our object is
( nly to show the distinction made between reason and instinct ;
those who desire to investigate the subject more thoroughly
can do so through works speciall}^ devoted to natural history.
No doubt any observing person caii recall instances in his own
ex[)eriencewith animals, where their actions showed evidence of
a greater or less degree of reasoning power.

An action may be partly instinctive and partly the result of
reasoning, but a purely instinctive action never changes except
under the influence of reason. A hen sits on her eggs from an
instinctive impulse to do so. If chalk ones be substituted for
the real eggs she tends them with equal care and will not desert
them any sooner than she would the others. And yet in other
matters perhaps hens have reasoning powers.

Without the possession of these powers we believe no educa-
tion of animals would be possible ; and we farther believe that
the capacity for learning is in exact proportion to the ability to
reason. A horse or dog can be readily taught things which a
hog can never learn, and in the lower scales of animal life all
attempts at education become failures. Under the tuition of
man the reasoning powers are undoubtedly developed to an
extent to which they would never attain in a state of nature,
and by judicious and persistent teaching numerous animals have
been educated to an almost startling degree. How this has
been done we shall show as we proceed.

Not only does the amount of reason vary with different species
but with different individuals of the same species, and much of
the trainer's success will depend on the judicious selection of his
pupil. Professional trainers take the utmost pains in this
selection, and they usually consider that the descendants of an
educated animal have, by inheritance, a greater aptitude for
learning than others.

The young trainer must not fall into the mistaken notion that
mere quickness in picking up a trick is the best quality in an ani-
mal. There may be such a thing as learning a lesson too rapidly,
.nnd what is learned with but slight effort is sometimes forgotten
v;ith equal readiness. Another thing, too much should not be
expected of one pupil. Public exhibitors are able to show a
large array of tricks because of the number of animals they
have, each, as a rule, knowing a comparatively few of these
tricks, or, in the case of some of the "sensation" tricks, perhaps
only one. Still any animal of ordinary capacity ought, with
proper tuition, to be able to learn a sufficient variety to satifsy


a reasonable trainer. Judicious management on the part of the
exhibitor will often make a variety of tricks out of a single one
wliich the animal has been taught j an example of this is
afforded by the ^' educated hog."

The first essential for success in training animals is patience.
At first many lessons may be given without the slightest appa-
rent impression being made upon the mind of the pupil and an
uncommon degree of patience and good temper is required to
bear up against such discouraging results. By-and-by, how-
ever, the pupil will suddenly appear to realize what is required
of him, and will perform his task with surprising accuracy at
the very moment his teacher is about to give up in despair.
Then each successive lesson is learned with greater ease and
rapidity than the preceding one ; the weariness and disappouit-
ment of the trainer is changed to pleasure at his success, and
even the animal appears to sympathize with his master's joy,
and to take pride in his performance.

As it is impossible to explain to an animal what is required
of him he can be taught an action only by its constant repetition
until he becomes famiiiar with it. When he knows what you
want him to do he will in almost all -cases comply with your
wishes promptly and cheerfully. For this reason punishments
seldom do any good, unless the animal is willful, which is rare.
On the contrary they, as a general rule, interfere with the
success of the lessons. If the pupil is in constant fear of blows
his attention will be diverted from the lesson, he will dread
makin,^- any attempt to obey for fear of failure, and he will have
a sneaking look which will detract materially from the appear-
ance of his performance. This is the case with the animals
instructed by a trainer of this city who " trains his horses with
a club," the animals never appearing as well as those taught by
more gentle means. But for a rare natural talent this man's
success would have been utterly defeated by his brutality. He
is the only one we know of in the profession who does not base
his tuition on kindness to the pupil. A sharp word or a slight
tap with a small switch will as effectually show your displeasure
as the most severe blows. It is both cruel and unwise to inflict
needless pain.

All trainers make use of various little tit-bits as rewards for
successful performance of tricks. These serve as a powerful
incentive to the animal as well as to show him when he has done
right. Withholding the accustomed reward when he fails or but
imperfectly performs his duty is much more effective than any
corporeal pimishracnt. The repetition of the lesson until the
animal will himself perform the required action, and the bestowal


of these rewards whenever lie obeys your order, is really the
main secret of training. Of course there are many important
details in the practical application, and many clever devices
resorted to by trainers to increase the effectiveness of tricks, as
well as skillful combinations of simple tricks to produce elabor-
ate and astonishing feats. These we shall fully explain in their
proper places.

To certain scents has sometimes been ascribed a mysterious
influence upon animals, rendering them docile and subservient
to the human will. To the use of these many persons imagine
trainers owe their success. Though some scents are relished
by certain animals, we doubt whether, as a rule, they have so
great a fondness for them as has been asserted. Certainly there
is no general use of them in the profession, though they may
have been sold to' the credulous by ignorant or unprincipled per-
sons, for this purpose, Oats are fond of catnip, and we know of
instances where kittens, displaying a violent resistance to being
carried in a basket, have been quieted by being given some leaves
of this herb. Animals no doubt receive pleasure from the grati-
fication of their sense of smell, but there is about as much
reason in conquering an um*uly school-boy by giving him a sniff
of cologne water, as in taming a colt by causing him to smell
that or any other perfume.

To the oil of rhodium is most frequently ascribed the greatest
and most general mfluence over the animal kingdom^ almost all
animals, according to this theory being powerfully affected by
it. This is the ^^ horse taming secret " sometimes sold for con-
siderable sums. There is no good reason to believe it has any
i aportant influence over either the disposition or actions of
.my animal.

The horse taming powders, composed of " a horse's com
grated, some hairs from a black cat's tail," and like absurd in-
gredients, are too nonsensical to deserve serious notice, though
once a staple part of the veterinary art, and still, possibly, be-
lieved in by a few persons.

To a certain extent many animals are able to understand the
meaning of words. That is, if any particular word of command
be used in instructing an animal to do a particular act he will
learn to associate that word with the action, and be able to dis-
tinguish between a variety of words and apply each to the act
associated with it, without confusing them. In training animals
It is important that each word of command should be used only
in its proper place. The common habit ignorant drivers have
ijf using the words "back," " whoa," and others indiscriminately
'o absurd, and it is not wonderful that their horses sometimes


fail to understand them. A story is told of a farmer who had
recently purchased a new yoke of oxen, and was driving them in
a cart. Slipping from his seat he fell before one of the wheels
and very naturally got run over. ■^'Bapk! back!" he cried to
the oxen, meaning for them to stop^ but, like many another man,
using words which meant something else. The oxen happened
to be better linguists, or else had been accustomed to obey
literally, and in this case did so by backing as ordered, running
ever the man for the second time.




SOME few persons imagine that to possess a proper mastery
over their horses, they must maintain their authority by
brute force. This is a great mistake. More work, within the
limit of safety, can be got out of a horse by kmdness than by
cruelty, and as far as inanaging a horse is concerned the chief
point is to teach him confidence in you. If he believes you to
be his friend he will not only strive to please you, but will have
less fear of strange objects which otherwise might startle him
and render him refractory.

The Rareys — there are two or threeof them — taught the world
^ most important lesson when they taught it the " power of
kindness" and '' self-^control" in the management of horses,
donkeys, zebras, and other animals. How often do we see
inconsiderate parents fly into a passion and, without reason or
religion, thrash the object of their displeasure. So of brutal,
heartless drivers, when the '' blinded '^ horses chance to misstep,
get ofi" the track, stumble, or in the wrong place. By their
actions it would appear that they expected a horse or an ass to
reason quite as well as themselves. Employers may not look
for the same talent in their apprentices as in their foreman.
Teachers may expect every little urchin to be self-regulating
and to mind his books; but this it is his duty to teach him to do,
and he should be all patience, all kindness, affection^ persever-
ance, if he would produce the best results. The same spirit is
required to subdue and manage a horse. If you say you are
not equal to the task ; if you say your child, your horse, or


your ox knows more than you, is j^our master^ then you are
not the one to manage him, and you should resign in favor of
one who is superior to child, horse, or ox^ A \Yeak man Wi
intellect may indeed be outwitted by a sagacious child or horsr.

There is no disguising the fact that viciousness is innate wit?)
some horses. But far more so with some, nay, most, men,
from whom they get it. It is no doubt sometimes hereditary,
and follows some of the best strains of blood we have. That
viciousness should accompany a highly nervous organization i?*
not to be wondered at. Hence it causes no surprise when we
find such dispositions amiong the finely organized thoroughbreds
— animals of a most sensitive and nervous organization — from
which the common expression "thin skinned," as applied to a
too sensitive man, is obviously derived. The treatment horses
receive, and the moral atmosphere in which they are thrown,
have a much greater influence than most horsemen are generally
inclined to admit. The pinching, tickling, rough, boisterous
stable boy who annoys a spirited horse for the sake of enjoying
his futile, though almost frantic kicks and leers, is affecting the
disposition of the horse and his descendants for generations to
come, besides putting in jeopardy the lives and limbs of those
who arc brought in contact with the horse so tampered with.
A horse is surely influenced by the character of the m.en with
whom he associates.

Sometimes, however, it is necessary to conquer a bad tempered
horse, and if possible to secure a radical conversion or change
of character which shall be lasting. Ko timorous man need
undertake this taskj he will only make matters -^orse. A
I.orse tamer should be calm, cool, brave, and fearless — the horse
will know it j he should be quiet, for then the horse will be put
off his guard j he should be firm and give the brute no advan-
tage, but crowd him up to doing something, and that, invariably,
what the tamer wants him to do. Thus any ordinary hcrse
will soon give up and own man his master. The kindest treat-
ment and even pcttmg must always follow yielding; and if
possible to help it, the horse should never be frightened by any
treatment, and above all things he should never be angered by
petty torture. His cwu contrariness should appear to him to
be the cause of all his trouble, and man his best friend. This
principle is at the foundation of Rarey's successful practice.


Place your hcrso in a small yard, or in a stable or room.
If in a stable or room, it ought to be large, in order to give him
.some exercise with the halter before you lead him out. If tlie


horse belongs to that class which appears only to fear man, you
must Introduce yourself gently into the stable, room, or yard,
where the horse is. He will naturally run from you, and fre-
quently turn his head from you; for you must walk about
extremely slow and softly, so that he can see you whenever he
turns his head toward you, which he never fails to do in a short
time, say in a quarter or half an hour. I never knew one to be
much longer without turning toward me.

At the very moment he turns his head, hold out your hand
toward him, and stand perfectly still, keeping your eyes upon
the horse, watching his motions, if he makes any. If the
horse does not stir for ten or fifteen minutes, advance as slowly
as possible, and without making the least noise, always holding
out your left hand, without any other ingredient in ft than what
nature put in it. I have made use of certain ingredients before
people, such as the sweat under my arm, etc., to disguise the
real secret and many believed that the docility to which the
horse arrived in so short a time was owing to these ingredients ;
but you see from this explanation that they were of no use
whatever. The implicit faith placed in these ingredients,
though innocent of themselves, becomes ^' faith without works."
And thus men always remained in doubt concerning the secret.
If the horse makes the least motion when you advance toward
him, stop, and remain perfectly still until he is quiet. Remain
a few mouiL^nts in this condition, and then advance again in the
■same slow and almost imperceptible manner. Take notice, if

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Online LibraryH. A MacphersonHaney's art of training animals : a practical guide for amateur or professional trainers → online text (page 1 of 20)