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Old 10-09-2011, 02:38 PM  
Halter broke
 
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herd bound horse

Excuse if this is long. Im' really disheartened and ready to just throw in the towel with horses.

I took my horse out for a hand walk around the trails today to meet up with a photographer down the road and get some shots of her and I. She was calm and quiet on the way out. Once we got to the spot she would not stand still, just all over the place and walking over me. she was throwing her head and walking in circles and just making the time miserable trying to get pictures. So we finally get what a few and decide to head back. Not even 5 min on our walk home she starts trying to bolt out of my hands, trot circles and get really rowdy on me. Im' starting to get afraid she'll kick me. She pops a tiny rear and I say enough, your not getting me killed, go home. So I let go of the rope and she runs toward home.

I can't ride her alone otherwise it will be a constant battle trying to get her to walk calmly. She is leaving for the trainers Dec 1st and will stay there an indefinite amount of time.

My question is... What should I do in the mean time? Is this a case of just being herd sour??
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Old 10-09-2011, 03:29 PM  
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It sounds like she doesnt respect you on the ground and is home/herd bound. Unfortunately since you let her run home you gave her a reward for acting like that.

for something like that I like to use a rope halter with a 12 foot lead line. I would start at home and get her feet to MOVE. ask her to move her hind end and her front end AWAY from you.

I think it's great your sending her to the trainers, I would definitely ask them if you can come for lessons with them. Is there someone you can ask in the meantime to come help you with some groundwork?
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:08 PM  
Halter broke
 
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I know I shouldn't have let her run home, I just didn't want to get killed since she was really getting out of control and we were a ways from home.

Would it do any good to take short walks farther and farther each day?

And yes I can visit her at the trainers she'll only be an hour away which is super close for my area
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:37 PM  
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for something like that I like to use a rope halter with a 12 foot lead line. I would start at home and get her feet to MOVE. ask her to move her hind end and her front end AWAY from you.
This is GREAT advice.

Horses are wonderful, and we love them like children, but the simple fact is... they've got ONE TRACK MINDS. If they start acting rowdy, the best possible thing you can do is get their little pea-brains thinking about something OTHER than being rowdy... like, moving their feet quickly, in a purposeful motion that YOU set... AKA, mini-lunging!

As soon as she starts acting like a little "mare," then pop her out and make her lunge. Around and around and around. Walk and trot. Trot and walk. As soon as you tell her to stop, and she licks, then reward with a pet, and keep going wherever it was you were going. You don't need to carry a lunge whip... a dressage whip is more portable and works exactly the same way... so start carrying one.

Herd-bound easy to correct, but hard to un-train.
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:50 PM  
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Yes the issue of disrespect was identified and people have all kinds of tactics for handling that. I want to address your self preservation.

Sure, in a perfect world you would of noticed the disrespect back in the past when she first started showing you the signs and then done something, but there you were with a bullying horse and you wanted to be safe. In that case you did the absolutely right thing, you let go and got as much distance between you and danger as possible.

Good for you.

More than one time a respected and experienced horseperson on HT has told us of how they tried to get one better on their horse and ended up getting hurt. And I'll tell you, it was all pride on their part. If it comes to it I'll trade my pride for all of my parts, thank you very much.
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:51 PM  
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More than one time a respected and experienced horseperson on HT has told us of how they tried to get one better on their horse and ended up getting hurt. And I'll tell you, it was all pride on their part. If it comes to it I'll trade my pride for all of my parts, thank you very much.
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:03 PM  
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I agree with Version1955. Some of you guys may be lots stronger than me but if a 1000 lb horse bolts, tries to run off or over you I can't hold them with just a rope halter. I have a be nice halter. It is similar to the one Monty Roberts uses. I don't have to use it now but my last horse every once in awhile he would just decide during lunging to bolt and jerk away without warning. He was sneaky never give a warning sign. After I got this halter he was much easier to control. The trainer sounds like the best idea. Once one has his bluff in on you it's not easy to get over and sure is not enjoyable. Hobbies are suppose to be fun, is the way I look at it. Be careful.
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:08 PM  
Halter broke
 
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Thanks guys. She really had me worried. She nearly trampled my friend who was walkign ahead of me when she bolted and spun back around at me trying to get out of my hands. she was kicking out with her front legs and everything.

I bought her as a "broke" horse who obviously has never been taken outside although the owners said she does best when ridden outside. yea right I feel defeated

I'll try the lunging whenever she gets antsy. thanks
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Old 10-09-2011, 11:36 PM  
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I hear you. I have tied up bad horses to the nearest tree and let them have their upset with out killing me. When I know that I'm going to have trouble, I use a nice 12 or 16 foot rope and they get lunged, lunged and lunged some more down the trail until they are ready to come home quietly. and then at home they get lunged some more, then I tie them up and go in for coffee. No food, no treats. Then and only then do they get put away. Again, with no food or treats. I don't want to reward them once we get home. It just gives them reason to run home.
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Old 10-10-2011, 09:37 AM  
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I found it interesting that the horse walked quietly away from the barn. True barn sour don't want to leave in the first place. This horse most definitely needs his butt worked off on the disrespect no matter what!
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Old 10-10-2011, 10:04 AM  
Halter broke
 
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It seems as though it's a mixture of a lack of respect and being herd-bound. My previous mare was very herdbound, and everytime we left the barn to go on a trail ride, she would litterally try to back her way up the drive way. She didn't do anything else, other than back up, so I wasn't dangering myself too much by urging her forward with nudges and a loose rein forward. It'd usually take about 15 minutes to leave and then she'd be fine. However, what you're saying is the opposite, which reminds me of my new 7 month old colt.

We've recently had to separate him and another horse because they'd become much too herd bound. I'd have no problem separating him from her, however she would call for him the whole time we were working together, and we were only in the barn so he could hear her perfectly and in return he would call. This spiked his attitude and he would thus rear and dance around. When he did this I would tie him and let him have a fit, and he finished and stood calmly I'd put him out. That's litterally all we did for a week. Then my BO and I decided it may be best to keep rotating his "field groups", because we think he gets attached much too easily. It's working and I now have his full attention. (This mare almost "adopted him" and treated him as though she was his mother, walking between him and the electric fence and not allowing other horses to get too close, so it's kind of a diff. situation)

I understand that people (myself included) believe that you shouldn't let your horse win a fight because they will learn that they can get away with things ... however, your case I believe you did the right thing because your safety was in danger. Although to correct this you should start with simple disciplines, such as tying her for long periods of time, alone. Then lunge her lots, but REWARD her, but only when she has good behavior (when I say reward, I mean with scratches on her special spot or "good girl" not treats). Take her for short walks (even around the property) but make her halt often, back often and move away from your pressure, she NEEDS to know that you're the boss and by doing simple things like this it will hopefully be a start! Good luck, and stay safe! How old is she?
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Old 10-10-2011, 11:34 AM  
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How long have you had her?

Reason I ask is when I first got my mare she turned goofy for awhile too. When i say goofy i mean absolutely had a heck of a scare just like you did. Night and day difference from what I'd seen of her in her previous home. It just ended up taking her some time to settle in to get back to how she normally is.
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Old 10-10-2011, 01:11 PM  
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Akusy, thank you

Yeah, you have a big problem BUT please realize that herdbound is a fear issue but your horse is acting like a bully. That means you have waaaaay different strategy and tactics to deal with that problem.

One person's trained is another person's nightmare. But she's your horse now and if you want you can retrain her. It probably will require a lot from you and by that I mean your own personal character building. IF you are willing to put in the investment of time and trouble then you can also build the skill set that will help you deal with it. On the other hand there is no reason on earth not to sell this horse to someone who can fix it and get yourself another one.

If you do sell this horse you'll probably take a loss and wait a while before the right buyer comes along. Be prepared. Please know beyond a shadow of a doubt that selling the horse is a wise move. In the meantime we can help you with strategy and tactics with your safety first and the horse's safety and dignity second.
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Old 10-10-2011, 06:49 PM  
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My advise, before she goes to the trainer is to just leave her alone, UNLESS, you make sure an incident like what happens doesn`t occur again
It is much more difficult to undo bad habits, than the never let a horse learn them in the first place, plus you will never have that clean slate again, far as the horse`s memory goes
Every time we ride or handle a horse, we are training them, whether we intend to nor not, either for the good or the bad
I do feel you need help in learning how to handle this horse effectively
Before you led her out that distance, you must have has some idea how truly well ground mannered she was,, and either chose not to go that distance away from her comfort zone, or have been prepared to deal with any possible barn or horse sour issues
If you are going to handle her before she goes to a trainer, you have to make sure you create good habits, able to correct her when she acts up, or leave her alone until she goes, and then see if you can take lessons at the trainers to learn to handle her more effectively
Did you ride and handle her before you bought her. Did you ride her both at her home and away from it.
To me she sounds not very broke . If she is that bad on the ground, can`t imagine how she would ride away from home, or anywhere for that matter.
And no, it is not just a case of being herd sour, but of totally lacking any respect and have huge holes in general leading and handling
A HERD SOUR HORSE THAT IS OTHERWISE respectful, might whinny, or prance and dance at the end of the lead shank, but they will not strike with their front legs or try to run over a person
This horse needs to learn respect-now! Even a be nice halter might not be enough. Personnally, if the horse were with me, she would get some big time respect lessons with stud shank run under the chin. When ahorse goes to run over a person or strike with their front feet, or kick with their back feet, they have crossed that fine line
Sorry, I don`t accept going to a new home as an excuse. We have sold many horses over the years, and not one suddenly became disrespectful .
They might take a little time to settle in, but they don`t suddenly become un trained horses if they were trained correctly in the first place
You said she was `supposed`to be broke-well did you test that claim, or just take the seller`s word
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Last edited by Smilie : 10-10-2011 at 07:05 PM.
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Old 10-11-2011, 06:43 AM  
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Smilie - not every horse is as lucky as the ones in your care have been?

Not every horse is trained perfectly, or even well, are trailered often, taken off their property often (it had been six years for mine...), exposed to other people often, or even exposed to other horses...ever.

So it stands to reason some horses are going to struggle initially.

That's not the horses fault. Or the original posters. It just is what it is. Moving a horse yes, absolutely CAN be stressful enough for them to get a little stupid when ordinarily they wouldn't be.

Mine went into heat the week after she was trailered in to boot. I would never expect a horse to act completely normal temperament wise under those circumstances. I don't know of anyone that could. I know I wouldn't be, and can only imagine how much scarier it could be for an animal who cannot be told what's happening or why.


For some that bond needs to be built, and baby steps taken to get back to normal. I don't at all think that's unreasonable.
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Old 10-11-2011, 08:44 AM  
Halter broke
 
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Just on a side note: Smilie- just curious as to why you would put a chain lead under rather than over the nose, when trying to correct a horse from rearing. From what I've learned, under usually drives the horse up because they're trying to get away from the pressure, where as over the nose will give them more encouragement to stay down. (As horses are trained to move away from pressure)
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Old 10-11-2011, 09:09 AM  
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Jess- The OP bought the horse as supposidly , 'well broke', thus my question to whether that claim was ever even tried before purchase, by riding/handling the horse in various situations
I am not nieve enough to consider every horse sold has had a solid foundation, and that many horses are not bought with issues. However, if one is buying a horse touted to be 'well broke', then one needs to test that claim before buying, as the horse in question, is acting up beyond new surroundings reaction, if indeed, the horse had the training the sellers claimed it had
As to the chain question, by who ever asked-
Over the nose is first, a more severe attachment than under the chin, and does not in my opinion, have the broad effective control in just generally leading a horse.
Over the nose basically is more effective in correcting rearing, but does little far as having a horse lead correctly , or prevent bolting. It also has the tendency to slip into the eye area, and horses often learn to carry their head high when chain is over the nose, and continue to try and run off
Under the chin is the usual way horses are shown in hand, and I have no trouble using it for any in hand resistence, including rearing. Horse goes up, you go with it, then give a sharp tug as a reprimand .In leading, it applies the right points of pressure if the horse does not respectfully walk with nose at your shoulder, and also gives instant release when the horse gives. I don't see over the nose as very effective in leading
I have no problem preventing a horse from trying to bolt, with chain under chin, as this horse was doing. Striking with front feet-same deal-reprimand instantly.
Also, reading the original post, the horse mainly tried to bolt, run over the handler, strike, and in general not handle well in hand. She eventually only offered to go up a little bit, but rearing was never the sole, original or main issue, far as I read into the situation by what was posted
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Old 10-11-2011, 09:24 AM  
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Originally Posted by Lillybird86 View Post
Thanks guys. She really had me worried. She nearly trampled my friend who was walkign ahead of me when she bolted and spun back around at me trying to get out of my hands. she was kicking out with her front legs and everything.

I bought her as a "broke" horse who obviously has never been taken outside although the owners said she does best when ridden outside. yea right I feel defeated

I'll try the lunging whenever she gets antsy. thanks
Okay, here is where I wonder if the OP bought ahorse that was supposed to be 'broke', only on the seller's word
The horse is 'supposed to ride best outside,' makes me believe the OP never even tried to ride that horse in various situations before buying her, or even handle her beyond her comfort zone. It concerns me, as too many people not very experienced with horses get 'taken', by not having someone, either a professional or a friend, help evaluate that horse before buying it. They then get discouraged often , and miss out on the great relationship one can have with the right horse , by being 'over horsed' in the beginning
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Old 10-11-2011, 04:18 PM  
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Smilie, I see exactly what you are saying. Being balky is one thing, seeming to not understand cues is one thing. But this horse was acting out and trying to hurt people. That isn't anywhere near trained, let alone well trained.
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Old 10-16-2011, 04:18 PM  
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i agree with almost everything said... mymare was very weird about things in the beginning.. heck it took me and the barn staff a yr to catch her after the first time hr halter came off.... but then again i knew my horses wasnt trained fully... so i knew what would happen... but also again.. i have worked with her since.. and she has struck out at me (in the beginning she doesnt any more though) and i would not for the life of me walk her out alone or off the property until she could handle what i was asking... so im not too sure why you would walk the horse out if it even slightly showed those signs.... i at one time accidently taught my yearling to touch my leg with his foot when he wanted to reprimand me for annoying him (in his own mind at least) because when he would paw instead of bending over id just touch his leg withmy foot.. now he never kicked or did it hard but when i realized it i stopped it immediately.... he now never even offers to do it. there seems to me to be A LOT of ground work and respect to be worked on before that horse goes off the property... like my mare... she likes me now... she has a certain amount of respect.... but she will not leave until she is fully trusted... and a horse like yours cant be trusted... not to mention you let her go home... understandabley they are very strong.... but thats where the whip comes in and you show them and they will generally calm down... thats just my opinion and i am by no matter an expert.... but your horse is rude and needs to learn a lesson... id say it was less herd bound than anything though... she just ran home because u were in the woods and she wasnt going to run in a different direction alone... she would obviously run back to the place she knows...
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