What to do when they spook.... - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 13 Old 03-28-2012, 12:48 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Oregon
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I do two things, depending on their reaction.

First is I bump the reins, poke them in the ribs and tell them to knock it off and keep moving. This works most the time for me, basically I'm telling them I'm the boss and will let them know when it's time to panic and when it's not.

When they have an object that they get spookier about everytime we pass I change tactics. It's best to do this prior to them getting to the spin and I'm outta here routine. That's when I jump out of the saddle, prior to their spook point, and lead them up to the object so they can smell it.

Biggest point to remember is to not tense up when approaching the spook point or when you think they might spook. This actually reinforces their idea that there really is something bothersome there. The second, don't stare down what you think they might spook at. They are watching you and looking where you are looking (****, sometimes I wish I had the ability to see in the same way they do). Keep your head pointed down trail and just move your eyes if you think there is something that might spook them.
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post #12 of 13 Old 03-28-2012, 04:34 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 492
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Thank you everyone. As to the person who said "let her see it with her left eye", she usually does and spooks anyway. I do tell her to knock it off as she tries to wheel around or half rears. I try not to anticipate that she's going to spook at school buses or cars with trailers.

I rode her the other day and a truck pulling a boat was coming our way. I let out a breath that I didn't want to hold and the person in the truck stopped dead in the road. She never even took a second look at it, not even when we had passed it and the guy resumed his journey.

I do appreciate all the feedback.

"When you're young and you fall off a horse, you may break something. When you're my age, you splatter." -- Roy Rogers
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post #13 of 13 Old 03-28-2012, 05:31 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
Posts: 17,193
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Your exhaling might have been what shut your horse down. I've done that with a soft moaning exhale that sounds almost like Whoooooooooooooa.
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