help! my horse is terrified of the clippers - Page 3

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help! my horse is terrified of the clippers

This is a discussion on help! my horse is terrified of the clippers within the Horse Grooming forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • My horse doesn't like he feathers trimmed would clippers better
  • My yealing throws her head everytime i try to trim her ears...a twitch doesn't help

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    02-26-2008, 03:17 PM
I think if the nose twitch doesn't work, then rather than twitching something else, you should just drug them.
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    02-26-2008, 05:11 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by tim
I think if the nose twitch doesn't work, then rather than twitching something else, you should just drug them.

IMO if its really neccisary to clip your horse right at that moment and it can't wait then id drug them but I would never use a twitch period.

Im jsut asking for tips to get my horse use to the clippers so I can clip her, but its not an emergency.
    02-26-2008, 05:14 PM
I think they ear twitch race horses because they don't want to drug them. Disgusting practice.
    02-26-2008, 05:16 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by Supermane
I think they ear twitch race horses because they don't want to drug them. Disgusting practice.
or becuase it costs more then twitching and they want a way to do it without having to go through a whole process with injecting them. People like that make me sick...
    03-03-2008, 06:03 PM
Originally Posted by Gingerrrrr
okay my old horse was ruined because he was twitched by his couldnt even touch his ears and he would flip. I think twitchs are cruel and evil. Id never twitch a horse ever..
I'm in agreement with you Ginger, twitches are evil. My one horse was not too bad about being clipped, but the other one just couldn't take it. So the trainer that I took lessons from, twitched her and got the job done. When I quit taking lessons and came to a point where I thought I wanted to just clean her up, the anxiety problem came up. And because I want her to trust me, and respond to me in confidence, I couldn't rationalize "twitching/hurting" her to get the job done. Particularly since she was so head-shy and that took such a long time to get over. Just didn't make sense. Sort of like telling your little kids not to take candy from strangers, but then sending them to the door of strangers to ask for candy.

So now I use a little pair of scissors for the bridle path and I leave her ears alone because the hair keeps the flies from getting in there.
    03-03-2008, 06:22 PM
Twitches are not evil if used correctly! They actually have a calming effect on many horses (well not my filly, but that's because she's a weirdo) which usually helps for what you are twitching them for. You shouldn't twitch a horse inappropriately or who doesn't need it, but otherwise they tend to be a very effective tool in handling a 1000lbs of pure muscle.

My filly doesn't clip, but not for lack of trying. For a month, I would bring the clippers out every day and turn them on and treat her with food if she let me get close to her. She broke about three cross ties and two or three stall corner ties. She would just have enough at some point (without much warning) and lean back on the cross ties (or corner tie) until one or both popped out. We thought she came without even being introduced to clippers, but we found out that she saw them regularly and was okay with them.. So we decided to twitch her (after literally a month of no improvement? Why waste time treading water?). She was clearly scared, but let us touch her neck with the clippers turned on, when we tried to touch her muzzle she reared. We haven't tried anything since.. but I think we're going to try to put a blanket on backwards so she can't rear. If not we'll have to sedate her, since she must clip. (She's a future show horse)

Since that day, she took rearing up as a habit she did to try and intimidate me. What a witch, right? =p
She also does plenty of other naughty things my gelding wouldn't dream of doing.

Part of the problem is I don't know her well enough yet, I don't trust her, and I haven't bonded with her. She feels the same about me, so why should she let me clip her?
My gelding on the other hand, I know everything about him, I trust him with my life, and I've got an incredible bond with him, he'd follow me off a cliff if I asked him to. =]
    03-03-2008, 06:34 PM
Green Broke
Well she's going to be shown but not anytime soon. But
IMO I still do not like twitches
    03-03-2008, 06:44 PM
My QH was terrified of the clippers. What I did was buy a cheap pair of those hand held, cordless clippers (by Wahl, I think). I worked with him daily until he got used to them. I didn't use treats, but rather used a round pen. That way if he broke away from me he couldn't get far or do any damage. Also, sometimes we would take a break from the clippers and do a little work to keep his mind in the right place.

If you don't show, the only thing I'd be clipping is his bridle path. The hair on the ears and the whiskers on the muzzle and around the eyes are there for a reason.

Until your horse gets used to the clippers, use a pair of scissors to trim the bridle path. Just be careful in case your horse is afraid of the snipping noise, too! (mine was )
    03-03-2008, 09:38 PM
I use a pair of scissors on her bridle path when she eats her dinner, otherwise she won't let me near her face with scissors. I trimmed her legs a little bit with scissors, and she was fine, but she was pretty head shy, and clearly still is in the way of clippers and vacuuming.

I also try to touch her muzzle whiskers or gently tug at them as much as possible, but she consistantly throws her head back and if I insist she threatens to rear. She obviously doesn't like the pinching feeling of the hairs but there's not much else I can do with her right now. I'm tired of whipping out the clippers, because no matter how much I baby her, feed her, praise her, it always ends negatively and I like to end on a positive note.

And no, she is not showing too soon (June or July the earliest), but I would still like her to clip for the sake of clipping and being a good horse. But she is hot, and when she's decided she doesn't want to do something, she won't. Clipping, Vacuuming and Crossing Water all fall into this category. I'm determined to make her do all three.
    03-03-2008, 09:56 PM
This is going to be one of those things where you are going to have to expose her every day until she gets used to it. One of the old barns I boarded at always used twitches when clipping horses which I completely disagree with.

You might want to consider getting a smaller set that is less loud and use them where she is less responsive and cooperative. Once she is used to those, go back to your regular pair.

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