Tail Swishing

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Tail Swishing

This is a discussion on Tail Swishing within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category

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  • 3 Post By Oldhorselady

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    07-29-2012, 08:17 PM
Tail Swishing

Hi all,

I was looking at videos of horses running the pattern on youtube swishing their tails...At a couple of local races over here in wyoming, I see tail swishers, too, but I don't see any at, for example, the nfr. Are all the pro caliber horses non tail swishers? I stumbled upon this video of a horse for an example (check it out and say what you think is up about that horse): It seems like the horse does it when she kicks him...would it help the tail swishing to take off spurs? I havent been to any competitions out of Wyoming but I bet there are lots more tail swishers everywhere..
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    07-29-2012, 08:33 PM
Tail swishing = irritated.
    07-30-2012, 01:25 AM
What if she took off her spurs? Maybe the horse is irritated at the spurs lol
    07-30-2012, 01:41 AM
I see quite a few horses swish their tails while running. Around here, its usually mares, they are peeing, and running very fast times. Yes peeing. Theres a 1D horse around here that does it every run. Is the horse irritated? No. She's running her heart out and having the time of her life.

That video is nothing compared to tail swishing I've seen. Ill try to video tape her next time I see her. Its very funny.
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    07-30-2012, 10:35 AM
Tail swishing really depends. In general, it is typically a sign or pain or irritation. That's why when you have a horse swishing it's tail that never has before, you'll want to check out their teeth, back, feet, saddle fit, bridle fit, etc to make sure there isn't anything physically causing them pain.

If that's ruled out, then look to the rider. As the spurs were mentioned, sometimes there's things the rider is inadvertantly doing to irritate or annoy the horse.

If the rider is not at fault and everything has been checked out, then they are just maybe a "tail swisher". Some horses just do it. Compare it to someone that bites their lip or sticks their tongue out or makes a strange face when they are concentrating really hard. Tail swishing can be the same thing.

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