This Horse needs help - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 29 Old 11-01-2011, 05:16 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
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Saddlebag: That was the very first thing I did. Just spend time with him. I did not ask anything of him, I did not force him to come to me or to like me. I spend time in his paddock, took one afternoon off and just spend the time with him, I did read a crossword puzzle. By the afternoon he came to me and stayed close just grazing there, not all over me just close. The next time he moved closer to me within 15 min time. From then on he stays close from the first moment I walk in his paddock. When I get up to go to the toilet he follows and then back again. He has never acted aggressive (invading my space) with me. Just stay close. If I take a walk he's by my side. So we are definitely ready for next step.
Northern: I agree he is not lost, if he did not show any interest in change I would say yes but he has showed that he wants to try. I am going to look at the Parelli course.
SDR: No he reacts same to other women as to men and yes his prev owner was a women.
Pocco: Explain what you mean by ground driving?
To every body else: I did not force my husband to get on that horse. I did not even asked him to get onto that horse. It was his decision to work with the horse after being asked by the owner. My husband is an excellent rider, been riding for 20 years, done lots of show jumping, and won lots of competitions. This is not the first problem horse we have worked with either. We have always done it this way, I do ground work and he does the riding. We have always been able to rehab every horse we worked with. I am currently the proud owner of a rehab. He was just as bad as Sebastian and now he is so sweet, loving. I'm riding him and he is so careful to not do anything to hurt me. So I believe it can be done. I know it takes alot of time. Took me 6 months with CC. I never thought it is a short term project. Was just hoping to gain time.
Saskia: I understand where the owner is coming from also. To just spend money on a horse that you can not ride is also not clever. From there the idea that I will not ask him to pay full costs. But the horse is also not mine. I have also seen how you spend money to help someone elses animal and the moment all is well he comes take the animal away and sell it to some idiot that starts the process of breaking down that poor animal again. But it will also be stupid of me to buy every problem case I work with. I will end up with dozens of horses and neglect them myself. Then I might become what I now despise. That is why I was hoping to find on this forum people with a love for horses, not just for there own horse but horses in general. People that understand where I'm coming from, how I can't see a horse suffer without trying to help. I know I can't change the world but I might be able to change the way a couple of animals live in it. That is good for me. It's because we always want to complaint but are not prepared to do something that the world is in this mess. So all I was asking for was advice. Where do I go from here. I thought this would be a great place to ask because there seems to be alot of knowledgable people.
Thanks to all the peoply that gave advice and I am sure that with help I can safe this horse. I am a very determined person and even without help I will help this horse.
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post #22 of 29 Old 11-01-2011, 07:12 AM
Join Date: Jun 2011
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Originally Posted by Raficca View Post
I know that it will not be clever to get on him. That's why I have not done so. I don't think the owner abused him, except if it was the previous owner, I have no knowledge about them. I thought it might have been rather one of the riders at the stables that abused him, hit him badly or so, but I have no proof and therefor can't accuse anybody. The reason for my thinking is he acts even more scared with the one person that used to ride him. I was thinking of more lunging work than riding. Would you say that it sounds more like abuse than physical?
The reason I thought abuse is because it sounds as if he has lost all trust in humans. If so, he would need a reason to have.
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post #23 of 29 Old 11-01-2011, 08:31 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
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The next step is saying hello to the horse. Each time you visit the horse, walk toward him, looking at his nostrils, not his eyes. Bend slightly at the shoulders and extend your fist. This is a horse hello. If he doesn't come all the way to touch, that's ok. If he looks away, you look away in the opposite direction. This draws his attention back to you. If he walks away, you walk away. When saying hello, and do say it like you're happy to see him, he must come the last inch, don't move to him. What you will come to find out that the more you give the horse a say in the matter the more he will trust. Big difference between compliance and trust.
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post #24 of 29 Old 11-01-2011, 09:31 AM Thread Starter
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Saddlebag: We are past that also. He comes up to me to say hello.
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post #25 of 29 Old 11-03-2011, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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I managed to track some people regarding his history. He was badly abused by first owner. Was taken away from first owner by Horse Care Unit. He was beaten so badly that they did not think he would live. Owner was taken to court for abuse. He was sold to another person after recovery, she could not rehabilitate him and sold him to next person. We have no idee how many owners in between before ending up here.
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post #26 of 29 Old 11-03-2011, 05:09 AM
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First of all, congrats on what you've been able to accomplish so far.

Here are my concerns about what you've shared about this horse and your progress so far: even if you manage to make more progress with this horse, given the level of previous abuse and severity of the behavior, he will likely *always* be a one person horse and a professional ride only. And transitions to a new handler, while not as difficult as the one you've just been through, will likely always take time and patience. At some point you need to evaluate whether this is a realistic proposition, if rehabbing the horse to that point is really going to change his long term prospects.

Second, rearing is one thing, rearing and flipping over is entirely another. Rearing and flipping over means that the horse is so frightened and so paniced it no longer cares about it's own physical safety AT ALL. I will allow a horse *one* episode on the assumption that they misjudged their footing or balance, but they better get up smarter and more careful than they went down. A horse that rears and flips (more than that once, accidently) doesn't care about keeping its own skin intact will never truly be a safe riding horse, no matter the skill level of the rider.

I have a lot of respect and admiration for what you and your husband have done so far, but I question if your time and talents wouldn't be better spent on an animal with better long term prospects.
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Last edited by maura; 11-03-2011 at 06:08 AM.
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post #27 of 29 Old 11-03-2011, 06:03 AM
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Northern Ireland
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If it were me I'd buy it if you have the time and money to continue working with it or call your local horse rescue?
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post #28 of 29 Old 11-03-2011, 06:06 AM Thread Starter
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I know that might be true. I have told myself that over and over. But when I get to the stables and he comes to me and I look into his eyes I know I have to try. It is as if he says "I trust you and for me it's very difficult to trust, so please don't you let me down like everybody else did". Okay plenty of people are going to say I'm crazy and reading things in the eyes thats not there but I believe that horses have feelings and the only way to express is by action. He is trying very hard to trust, it's people that made him like he is, should he not get another chance to see that all people are not bad. Should I just give up on him because it's hard work? Then I fail him also, then the human race has failed yet another horse.
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post #29 of 29 Old 11-03-2011, 06:20 AM
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I'm not necessarily saying give up. I'm saying evaluate his prospects and your time realistically. Maybe the best thing for him is to be a pasture pet or companion, or maybe even a driving horse.

What are the realistic chances of making a decent riding horse out of him, or finding him a home as a riding horse?

I am also concerned that you and your husband are risking *your* safety without being compensated or even covered by worker's comp. Is possibly saving this horse worth your health or livlihood? And what does "saving" really mean? Forestalling slaughter? Forestalling resale?

No, I am not saying give up on the horse. But put your head, not just your heart, into the decisions. Think longer term about this horse's prospects and your investment in him.

The hardest thing about this work is remembering that *you can't save them all.*
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