Horse Whisperer in town this weekend

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 23, 2011

Dennis Reis, also known as the horse whisperer is in town today and tomorrow offering free clinica to all horse enthusiasts. | Stephanie Nelson/Star-News

Some people call him a “horse whisperer,” while others call him a “magician.”

Whatever you call Dennis Reis, it’s apparent from his history that he has a way of making horses understand him and in turn, their owners.

And he’s bringing his practice of “Universal Horsemanship” to the Covington Center Arena today and tomorrow from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. both days. The clinics are free and open to all horse enthusiasts.

His methods are featured on RFD TV and have been highlighted in major publications such as The New York Times and People magazine.

“Horses are my passion,” Reis said. “Over the years I have learned several truths about horses. One is that a horse never lies. The horse will be exactly as good as his human.

“Second, when he has a choice, the horse will always make his own decision,” he said. “And that decision will always be a reflection of you, the human. The nature of the horse is universal, no matter what discipline he is trained for or what breed he is.

“So, what I teach is a better way of communicating between a horse and its human, versus using mechanics and fear tactics to make a horse obey,” he said.

Reis said he began riding horses at age 10. He later progressed to rodeo rider and horse trainer.

“What I later learned, after being surrounded by people who could make horses do things I couldn’t, was that I needed to help people learn to communicate with their horse through a universal language – body language,” he said.

Reis said workshop students learn about the horse’s true nature through exercises that encourage the horse to make his own decisions without restraint or force.

“I also teach skills that enable students to act as herd leader to their horses,” he said. “Because my students work with the horse’s nature instead of trying to control it, they have willing, happy and safe horses.”

Reis’ wife, Deborah, said the workshops are beneficial to owners of horses with behavioral issues such as biting, bucking and kicking.

To demonstrate his technique, Reis will be using a horse from Andalusia, whose owners say is having behavioral issues.

“It’s really interesting to watch the whole process from start to finish,” Reis said.

For more information and to print free tickets, visit