"Clinician Matt Sheridan has paid his dues and done his homework. He speaks well and with depth, and he handles horses as though he's been doing it all his life, which he has. When Matt teaches, people learn. This likable California horseman would make a valuable addition to any event."
Rick Lamb, Radio/TV Host and Author, www.thehorseshow.com
"We have found Matt’s teaching methods easy to learn and in turn transfer to others as well as apply to our own horse training. As a clinician Matt is easy to understand and is dedicated to doing whatever it takes to help you to learn and implement his strategies. It is certainly not uncommon to find Matt well after the clinics answering questions and providing one on one help to those of us that “just didn’t get it” during the clinic."
Thomas and Rosalie Goodlett,
Rockin G Foundation Quarter Horses
"I first met Matt at the Western States Wild Horse & Burro Expo as one of our clinicians. I was impressed with Matt's knowledge and gentleness when working with the mustangs. I watched as he worked with Mojave, one of our rescued mustangs that had some real trust issues. He had been known to buck and flee when frightened. Matt helped Mojave go from being scared and unsure to his first safe ride. Mojave was adopted that weekend and has a wonderful home. I don't invite many trainers to our ranch. After meeting Matt and watching how he worked with both horses and people I knew I would host a clinic."
Lynda Sanford, Program Director,
"Save a Life" Wild Horse Training Program,
Western States Wild Horse & Burro Expo
"Thanks for working with Stormy and Sassy. I always learn so much from just watching you work with the horses. Sassy did wonderful getting in the trailer. I'm glad you showed her the trailer isn't her enemy. You make it look so easy."
Mary Ellen Franz
"My story starts out as many others you hear about in the horse-world. I went from trainer to trainer looking for a solution to my horses (or what I perceived as their problem) behavioral problems. Yes, the trainers could get them to behave while they were handling them but as soon as they left I was in the same situation."
I have a paint, quarter, 2 minis and a pony. I have had the large horses since the were babies and have shown them for five years. I hate to admit how dangerous it was both for myself and anyone else who chose to come and help me get them ready for show. Still I went ahead and showed, placed, but never felt that my horse was in sync with me. I knew I needed help when I became frustrated and angry at my animals for what I perceived as their lack of respect for me.
Then I heard about Matt Sheridan from the person who was feeding my horses for me in the evening. I was skeptical at first so I asked him to come over and meet me and my band of renegades to see what he thought. I did not tell Matt anything about their behavior, I just thought I would see what he had to say. After all I wasn't about to tell him they acted like lunatics and then have them behave in front of him. All of my horses were challenges in their own way, but my gelding Tardee was the most difficult. You could not get near his head much and to clip him we would have to have him sedated. I accepted that this was the way the horse was. After all I had paid good money to trainers who could twitch him when they needed to clip him.
Although I was still skeptical, I asked Matt if he could work with me. To this day, I don't know how I ever handled my horses on a daily basis let alone haul them to shows without Matt's help.
Within the first lesson I saw immediate improvement in my horses behavior. More importantly I saw them looking to develop a 50/50 partnership with a human. I was amazed by this change in attitude not only because they were acting differently but because they were actually searching for the relationship. Over time my horses who would normally charge out of their stalls (usually right over me) started to walk quietly out and be completely respectful of my space.
I had friends come over that had not been around my horses for awhile and they could not believe that these were the same animals! some asked if I had sedated them, others if I had a lobotomy done! Slowly, I began to realize that my horses did not have a behavioral problem but that I had set the expectations for their behavior so low that that was all they gave me.
Over the year I was still struggling with my behavior and how the horses perceived me. I was becoming content to let Matt handle them for the rest of all our lives. Matt was patient with me and encouraged me to continue using the methods even when he was not around. "My job is to not have you as a student for the rest of your life" was what he kept telling me. Slowly my confidence grew stronger. especially when I began to be able to clip my geldings ears without drugs or twitches. When I could load them in a trailer without a one hour fight, pick their feet without getting my back pulled out, have them come to me rather than chasing them. I was amazed and so was my family.
The biggest tribute I can pay to Matt's methods is when Tardee became ill and needed stomach surgery. The vet did not think he would make it through the first night, still I followed his instructions and gave hourly enigmas and shots every two hours. If this had happened two years ago I can guarantee that I would not have been able to treat my horse and would have probably lost him. Because of Matt I was able to provide treatment without twitches and even without a halter.
I have since developed the best relationships with my animals, where they have peace (no stud chains, twitches, tie downs, etc) and I have peace of mind. Before Tardee's illness I took him into our first showmanship class, although we took the blue more important to me was that we actually worked as a team. I usually practice his showmanship pattern without a halter and lead rope just to reinforce the methods that Matt has taught me. I can say this truly paid off in the class because I was not dragging on my horse but almost dancing as a partner with him.
For the record, I work full time, go to school and have family obligations. So I feel that I am proof that these results can be achieved even if you are not a full time horse professional.
My heartfelt thanks to Matt who has shown me the true beauty of these majestic animals and given me the roadmap to a safer and happier relationship with them."
Linda Arquieta-Herrera, Painted Dreams Ranch