Strong Relationships are Built on Trust

This is true for people and horses

About David GrayI’m David Gray but most folks just call me Gray. I’ve worked in law enforcement for over 30 years, which has taught me a lot about patience and trust. I started training horses over 20 years ago. It’s a passion for me.

The first training methods I used were more of the Old West style – go head-to-head with the horse and force him to do what I wanted him to do. I used bits, harsh bits, harsher bits, tie downs and many other forceful methods – it’s all I’d ever been taught. I had a lot of failures and some successes. Many times I was asked, “Is your horse doing what you want?” This was inevitably followed by, “If you kill him trying to make him better, what have you lost? He’s not any good anyway. Just go get another horse.”

Well, I never killed a horse, but I did some things that inflicted a lot of pain. Despite my sincere efforts, I never got the results that I wanted and certainly never inspired a horse to give it his all. Because of this, I developed a deep desire to learn how to get into a horse’s mind and train him in a pain-free manner that would cause him to WANT to do the things I asked. I also wanted to find a method that would reduce my risk of injury.

An ol’ cowboy learns a better way – the no pain way.

About David GrayIn 2006 I met Dale Moulton, and my relationship with horses changed forever. Dale could get horses to do things that I couldn’t. Horses focused on him. I had never seen that before.

In the 1990s, Dale had the rare opportunity to spend some time with an elite group of Eurasian horsemen whose expert horsemanship skills have been passed down for centuries. While there, he learned a whole new way of building relationships with horses and achieving the highest level of trust and performance.

Dale taught me you can’t physically force a horse to do something and think you’re building trust with him. He challenged me to manage not only the horse’s behavior, but also my own. The words, “It’s not how well you understand the horse, but how well the horse understands you” completely reversed my perspective. I learned the hard way that being a dictator or trying to micromanage a horse leads to nothing but frustration and failure for both you and the horse. Through Dale’s mentoring, I accomplished my goal of getting into the horse’s mind and painlessly communicating the complex tasks that I need for him to accomplish.

Proven results

From horses that were deemed too far-gone to four year old kids to working with huge draft-bred horses, I have a proven track record of success in training horses and people in the fundamentals of developing relationships of mutual trust and performance.


If you desire to have a trusting relationship with your horse, contact me to find out more about riding lessons, my non-traditional training program, or ThriveFeed. Come ride with me and see for yourself why average is not an option at Gray Performance Horses.