01-17-2012, 06:14 PM
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My first question is do you ride out alone with your horse? If you don’t I think you and he would benefit hugely from this. It sounds to me like he is a bit nervous and dependant on other horses going first. If he gets in front he makes sure he gets in the back and tucks in close. If he falls behind on the way home does he get antsy? Start with small ride and set goals, to the other side of the field and back, around this trail etc.
If you do ride out alone maybe he just needs a firmer hand and to be worked a harder when he doesn’t listen.
OIif he tries to put his nose in bums reins him back and make him work harder so he learns you dictate the speed and direction. (if you have to do serpentines or circles bends etc that's okay) if you have to ride 20 or 30 feet behind the riders in front of you or 10 feet to the side, make him stay that far away. He may not be comfortable and that is why he is getting so close but he needs to learn to listen and trust your cues as one day he’ll sniff the wrong butt and you could get hurt.
On the way home is the biggest problem, my mare does this occasionally because they like to go home. We train our horse so they ride a loose rein on the way home and cool down. By doing that if they get hot like that you turn around and ride them in the other direction until they relax, turn around and start going home, if they get hot again you turn around again. They do learn quickly that home isn’t an option when they run through your hands. It sounds like you do this so that’s a start, I would do it until you get the exact result you want before going home though.