Originally Posted by Equus caballus View Post
I don't think It can be the saddle because we constantly check it to make sure it's comfortable, and we stretch her legs to make sure the girth is not pinching her. Also, she salivates with the bit, and I was told that is a good thing because it means they are comfortable with it.
As for the horses background ( sorry I forgot to include that )
She used to be ridden western style, and so people would just hop on her and make her go right away while they were still getting on her. I'm pretty sure that is probably the cause of her problem. I just can't get her out of the habit.
I use voice with her, but she will still respond with the elaborating stop. And when I use the reins, I make sure that I pull a little, and let go, then pull a little and let go so that I'm easy on her mouth and not too hard and not too gentle.
Also, she is kind of a fat horse and I don't think she wants to get the exercise lol.
Is there any chance that her English saddle could need re-flocked? Wadded up padding in the panels can be a cause of pain and resistance.
In the OP you referred to changing her bit - what did you switch to? Salivating is a good thing, coupled with other signs of relaxation. Salivation along with a wringing tail, stiff posture, etc. can actually be a sign of stress and resistance. The ideal is an overall picture/feel of relaxation, with white foam "lipstick" on the horse's lips. This has as much (if not more) to do with the rider's hands than the bit.
How is her halt in-hand and on the lungeline? Does she stop promptly without pulling there? If not, that can be a good place to start.
Last "standard" thing to look at - your riding. If you are riding in a way that is not very well balanced, it will be harder for the horse to change direction, gait, speed, or balance nicely. Even if it is a purely behavioral/training problem, being solid and independent in your seat and able to help your mare balance can make a lot of difference in replacing that "gotta-go" habit.
I do recommend taking a few lessons if you can manage it - pics or video would help us to see what's going on and perhaps offer better advice, but in-person help can be invaluable.