Archive for August, 2013


What can we learn about leadership from horses?

Monday, August 26th, 2013

 Dr. Susan Cain and Debbie Roberts-Loucks

CLI_MR_book_covers-1In writing our new book, JOINING UP: What Horses Can Teach Us About Leadership, we came across an important discovery: the way we “show up” and influence animals is sometimes similar to the way we lead humans. Take for example the last time you trained a horse, a dog, or another animal in your life.

How did you communicate the training goal? Were you patient or impatient? Did you enter the training opportunity with anxiety or come in totally calm?

Monty Roberts starts horses with a dedicated calm, clear communication and a great deal of patience. Think about that approach the next time you are about to lead a human or a group of humans. Enter in assuming good intent, communicate expectations clearly and patiently work through the process of elevating the performance levels of others.

Leadership is that blending of personal style with enough self-awareness to be able to bring people with you. As a leader, think about the following question: why would anyone want to follow you?

Our new book, due out in fall of 2013, will give insights into how Monty developed a personal leadership style capable of changing the world for horses and humans. Let’s hear from you! What inspires you most about Monty Roberts’ leadership qualities? Click here to respond:

 For more information contact Susan Cain at


Monty Roberts Willing Partners™ Demonstration Videos

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

Our training covers a huge variety of experiences for every Willing Partner horse: they must accept goats, cattle, deer, tarpaulins, teeter-totter bridges, cowboy curtains, water crossings, and hundreds of scary, spooky objects, as well as to become a trained driving horse and pull a cart.

In order to accomplish all of these requirements, we have trainers who are experienced and gentle, and whom Monty oversees as the horses progress. Monty continually suggests further training challenges that demand many months to complete. Most horses have logged over 30 months of training to become Willing Partners(TM). The end result is a relaxed and safe horse who you can depend on. It’s Monty’s guarantee.

See a group of Willing Partners(TM) schooling over an obstacle course as part of their cursory training:

All Willing Partners(TM) are trained to side-pass to the mounting block for their riders to mount and dismount. See the Mount~Up video here:

See a group of Willing Partners on a trail ride at Flag Is Up Farms:

Feel free to come and see the horses at Flag Is Up Farms and get to know the extent to which we work to achieve our intended goals. We care about our horses, but most of all we care about the people who will ultimately enjoy them. We have gained a reputation for excellence through word of mouth. We hope to see you at Monty’s farm soon. Our doors are open to visitors every day from 9 am to 5 pm, no reservation or fee is required to visit.

For more information please contact: or call 805-688-4382

Visit the farm!
Flag Is Up Farms
901 E. Highway 246
Solvang, CA 93463


Monty Roberts Willing Partners™: QUIXOTE CONCERTO

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

Update from Quixote’s forever home:

July 8, 2015: Hi. I’m Nicola and I met Monty at Merrist Wood last year. I’m based in Surrey and own Quixote, one of the Willing Partners graduates. I wanted to let you know how he is getting on. He lives at home with me and my children’s black shetland and seems very happy! We back on to hundreds of acres of common land so we love hacking as well and riding in the paddock and doing some horse agility. He is very calm, quiet and steady, is very clever, loves variety and loves people. He is adored by all who see him, even those who have never been near a horse before. He has been with me just over a year now, and he will be with me for life or until the children are big enough to ride him, then I will be in touch with you again to come and try another Willing Partner Horse!



Monty Roberts Willing Partners™: SIERRA KING TUT

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013
“Tut” is a 2010 black gelding 15.1hh. This attractive black horse is kind-natured and friendly, has a solid foundation and is ready to build into a great partnership. We are impressed with his confirmation and eye catching appearance, as well as the fact that he is enjoyable to ride and very willing to please with an outstanding disposition.


Watch Tut perform over a challenging obstacle course with ease:

Watch Tut Join-Up with Monty and receive his first rider:



Monty Roberts Willing Partners™: BIRCH CREEK CADILLAC

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013


Monty Roberts Willing Partners™: Kings Gold Zimfandel

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013


Monty Roberts Willing Partners™: Sugar Daddy

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013
“Sugardaddy” is a 2009 grey gelding 15.2hh. This horse is an intelligent partner with a generous and sweet nature. His smooth gaits make him a pleasure to ride. Can be ridden Western or English.


Watch Sugardaddy perform Western dry work and over challenging obstacles:


Watch Sugardaddy being ridden English, and being trained to pull a cart:



Champion Trainer Gai Waterhouse Calls on Monty

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

Solvang, CA (August 21, 2013) –  Race trainer Gai Waterhouse will utilize the skills of the world’s most famous horse whisperer in her attempts to show Australian punters “something very special” in the spring with her high profile import Carlton House.

Waterhouse confirmed on her website that Carlton House is being readied to resume in the Group III Tramway (1400m) at Randwick on September 7, 2013, where the six-year-old will carry 59kg under the set weights and penalties conditions of the race.

Waterhouse is determined to thoroughly help this son of Street Cry, following the counsel of Her Majesty to request American horse whisperer Monty Roberts to Australia to work with Carlton House as the trainer tries to improve his starting stalls manners.

“Monty Roberts, the great horse whisperer is coming to Sydney to assist with Carlton House in an attempt to get the absolute best out of him because his best is something very special,” Waterhouse said.

“Everyone at Tulloch Lodge is very much looking forward to the magician gracing our stable.”

“Monty is one of the best men one could possibly call upon when it comes to assisting a horse who has barrier problems.

“…he is very effective at what he does. I have complete faith in the magic ways of Monty Roberts.”

Roberts has worked with the Royal Family’s horses since 1989. In 2011 he was privately honored when made an honorary Member of the Royal Victorian Order by the Queen for service to the Royal Family and Her Majesty.

In 1989, the Queen Mother was reduced to tears after Roberts managed to tame her wildest horse. Roberts has been involved with some aspects of the monarchy’s horses ever since.


Monty’s Special Training Clinic Daily Journal

Saturday, August 10th, 2013


Day 1, Monty’s Special Training

A super group representing horse lovers from about 10 countries came to Flag Is Up Farms for an educational experience spanning 5 days. On this first day of the clinic, I worked with Liger, a beautiful Arabian gelding destined for high achievements in endurance. The 3-year-old starter is owned by Heather and Jeremy Reynolds. He bucked like a kangaroo with the saddle but settled to a beautiful ride. Later I worked with a fine Arabian mare who did not want to be caught in the field. We also had a classic Join-Up with Trigger and much more fun and fascination on Flag Is Up Farms. Here is Liger on the long lines:

Day 2

We used a dummy rider before we introduced a live rider to our starter horse. In today’s session, Certified Instructors Denise Heinlein and Courtney Dunn demonstrated my concepts with Liger. Shopping bags, dummy rider and flapping legs helped this young horse become accustomed to a rider. Many older and more experienced horses would be challenged by plastic bags and floppy legs, but working in a low-adrenaline and safe environment supported Liger in his training. This horse has a wonderful mind and the demonstration was highly educational.
Liger on Day 2, outfitted with a dummy rider and plastic bags, ready to go to work with Certified Instructor Courtney Dunn

Liger on Day 2, outfitted with a dummy rider, is ready to go to work with Certified Instructor Courtney Dunn


Day 3

We began the horse work at the Untouched Horse Gentling Facility at Flag Is Up Farms. The broodmare in the video below was an older rescue with little prior handling. Certified Instructor Denise Heinlein excelled at timing and patience to bring this mare to a more peaceful place to end the session on. More on handling tomorrow.


Day 4

Today was a day made in heaven if you love horses and appreciate the ability to offer them a better life. We started with mounting block lessons – one of the most vulnerable times in a rider’s moments with a horse. After that, a rescued Paint took many skeptical moments before we were able to achieve a Join-Up and Follow-Up with this wonderful horse, literally on its way to the feedlot. It was emotional. Then, another session with the endurance Arabian, Liger, this time with a buddy horse in preparation for his first trip outside the Round Pen tomorrow. Lastly Ada Gates demonstrated some life-saving trims for your horse’s feet.

Day 5

Our last day was the culmination of so many wonderful training sessions. I was overwhelmed by the acceptance of the horses and the appreciation the students had for how far the horses had come. Starters, remedials and even babies taught us many things and gave us great moments to remember for a lifetime. Thank you to the MRILC Team of Instructors and all our staff for the super job creating an environment in which the student can learn. We hope to see you at Flag Is Up Farms next year!
~ Monty
Here is young Liger on his 5th day as a riding horse, right on track!

Here is young Liger on his 5th day as a riding horse, right on track!