First Trail ride THIS WAS AN ADVERNTURE so is this a good idea? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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First Trail ride THIS WAS AN ADVERNTURE so is this a good idea?

So today i went with a friend on a tail ride lets just say it was an adventure. Ill make this short and hopefully some good advice comes from it. As soon as we left my barn and walked maybe a property over he FREAKED (he is really barn and buddy sour) and knew we were leaving the barn, so he would always just turn around and not go forward untill i got off him and walked him forward and he was still a little skittish. We then got to the trail and i had to have my friend hold him while i got on and she had to lead both horses and then after maybe 2 mins let me take the reins and my horse would be okay and keep going straight no problems for about 20 mins untill he realized he was going the wrong way and would turn around and back up and not go forward. i tryed on my own to get him to go forward by giving him a good kick but that just led to him rearing (first time no bigyy...not lol) so she had to lead us again untill he was okay and kept going on his own. Another thing is he was sweating like it was 100 degress outside ( like white foam) when it was only 50. It was deff a nervous sweat and his poop was really wet. So my plan is to show him its okay to leave the barn and his friends by walking him off property and reward him with treats every time we get farther and farther away. would that work? does anyone else have any ideas!?

Keenan Freker
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post #2 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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Keenan Freker

Last edited by Cherie; 11-06-2013 at 07:05 AM.
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post #3 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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post #4 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 10:15 PM
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first off....three of the same threads on three different forums is unnecessary.
that being said,

im not one for giving my horse treats, at all.

has this horse ever been on the trails? if not then its perfectly understandable that hed be nervous. I would recommend ponying him a couple times first, with NO rider on his back so he can look around and take his time.
the last thing he, or you, needs is to go out again when YOU know hes going to be nervous, which in turn makes YOU nervous, because that will just make him more nervous.

what I do with my youngins, is pony them a few times, (or use them as pack horses) with an older steady eddy horse, then take them on short easy trails, again with steady eddy horses and just build up their confidence slowly.

imo if you go the treats reward for going outside route your going to get more problems. hes going to start thinking every time he goes out of the barn or out on the trail hes going to get treats and hes going to be anticipating and expecting them.

that will lead to him possibly completely balking unless he gets treats, even going onto a trailer etc.

but that's just me.

*Insert something witty*
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post #5 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 10:17 PM
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Work his booty off by the barn and only (and I mean get a good sweat going along with the huffing and puffing) let him rest away from the barn. He'll soon realize it's not so bad away and a lot of work at the barn.
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post #6 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 10:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kfreker View Post
So today i went with a friend on a tail ride lets just say it was an adventure. Ill make this short and hopefully some good advice comes from it. As soon as we left my barn and walked maybe a property over he FREAKED (he is really barn and buddy sour) and knew we were leaving the barn, so he would always just turn around and not go forward untill i got off him and walked him forward and he was still a little skittish. We then got to the trail and i had to have my friend hold him while i got on and she had to lead both horses and then after maybe 2 mins let me take the reins and my horse would be okay and keep going straight no problems for about 20 mins untill he realized he was going the wrong way and would turn around and back up and not go forward. i tryed on my own to get him to go forward by giving him a good kick but that just led to him rearing (first time no bigyy...not lol) so she had to lead us again untill he was okay and kept going on his own. Another thing is he was sweating like it was 100 degress outside ( like white foam) when it was only 50. It was deff a nervous sweat and his poop was really wet. So my plan is to show him its okay to leave the barn and his friends by walking him off property and reward him with treats every time we get farther and farther away. would that work? does anyone else have any ideas!?
Yes, it's a great idea taking him for walks. What you're experiencing is sometimes called barn-sourness, sometimes herd-boundness, but it's a real and normal phenomenon called separation anxiety. All horses feel it to one degree or another and need experience in being taken away from home and having it be a good deal for them. If you can lead him and remain confident yourself when things happen, do it. There are some methods of training where they stay on the ground developing a horse, taking them for walks etc for a long time before they ever ride them and create beautiful, balanced, educated and above-all reliable horses. You're in good company, with your idea. :)
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Last edited by Ian McDonald; 11-05-2013 at 10:27 PM. Reason: Fortune favors the bold. :>
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post #7 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 11:22 PM
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You already know the answer. That he is "barn and buddy sour." You are correct in guessing that the sweating and loose stool is part of that, too.

So, you can keep trying to getting him to go forward and to behave as he should. Eventually, you should see improvement. You will probably figure some things out as you go.

Or, you send him to a trainer and go work with the horse and trainer while it's there.

Bottom line: Don't get hurt.
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post #8 of 26 Old 11-05-2013, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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sorry i didnt know where to exactly put this thread.....

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post #9 of 26 Old 11-07-2013, 02:28 AM
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Take him on walks. Show him the world until he sees it's not so scary. Let him graze somewhere during the walk to attach positive feelings to leaving the barn. Nothing wrong with treats either, as long as you make sure not to give him one when HE stops, but only when YOU stop him. I love stopping a horse and then giving a treat when they obey promptly, because it makes a very willing stopper later on. Don't try to trail ride until he is more chilled.
My mare also had anxiety being out by herself in a world she didn't really know (but was still amazingly obedient), she got more relaxed over the months and now, over a year later, she is quite calm and relaxed about it (and doesn't poop 20 times per ride any more). It takes time, be patient and practice.
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post #10 of 26 Old 11-07-2013, 10:56 AM
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you kind of set yourself up for failure here a bit. If the horse is barn/buddy sour, you need to work on that first. What groundwork have you done? How is he to handle on the ground?

it seems obvious to me that this horse does not trust or accept your leadership. You are submissive to him, trying to take him away from his herd, where he feels safe, why would he listen?

this type of situation, taking a horse that doesn't trust or respect you away from its herd, can end very badly. I think you need to back up, do some trust and respect building ground work, and build up to trails as his trust and respect for you grows.
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