So I have a 5 year old Arab gelding who is pretty hot and nervous. He was used as a halter stallion for 3 years before I bought him with literally no training or concept of respect. For the past year I have done endless groundwork with him and he has become extremely respectful and obedient, however under saddle he is still extremely up-tight, nervous, and anxious. On occation he will spook, bolt, become hollow and takeoff, etc.
I am COMPLETELY aware that he needs more training, confidence building exercises, and time, however I am wondering if I should consider a calming supplement to take the "edge" off or no? I don't like supplementing unless I absolutely have to and I don't like the fact of having to "drug" my horses for anything. I beleive in taking the time to work with them on what their problems are, however maybe a calming supplement will keep me safer and make it easier for him to relax and focus.
For some additional information (because I know many of you are going to ask...lol) He is not getting too much feed, I have him on a very restricted diet as he is sensitive to sugars and carbs, he has a custom fitted saddle and is ridden in a snaffle bit (very sensitive mouth), and he gets 24/7 turnout. I also work him 3-4 times a week for about an hour or more. I beleive its just a matter of "hot" bloodlines and lack of training & experience. However, excuses aside, I can't help but thing about what will keep me safer during this crucial training time. Any suggestions or opinions would be greatly appreciated =)
Also, if anyone can tell me their preference of supplement brand and ingredients(Herbal? L-Tryptophan? Etc?) and why that would be fantastic. Thanks!