How to get a horse use to the show routine? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 01-20-2013, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
Green Broke
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How to get a horse use to the show routine?

I plan on doing some hunter paces and low key WP shows this summer. I am getting two memberships to local arenas so I can trailer over and work my gelding in new surroundings. I'm not sure if he's ever been shown before but I'm going to assume not. Any tips or ideas how to get him use to the show atmosphere? I plan on trailer to a few shows first too and just hangout and relax all day on the grounds so he can watch the hustle and bustle of it all. But anyone have any other tips/tricks or ideas?
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post #2 of 8 Old 01-20-2013, 08:17 PM
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I think you have the right idea. We take young horses to shows to get them used to trailering and different places. We also lead them around the grounds and you could ride some in the warm up areas. Trail riding helps too.
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post #3 of 8 Old 01-21-2013, 03:14 PM
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If there's any way you can simulate the PA system at home or even better, the location you'll be showing, that will help greatly! Also ride with other horses in the arena to see how he acts around them. Many horses will speed up considerably with other horses around, either to "catch up" or "beat" the other contestants. Mine did in the only show I've taken him to so far, but WP is NOT his discipline, just wanted to get him used to the atmosphere like you! The thing he was most concerned about was the PA system by far, though, and he's not spooky in the least. Even if you have a small amplifier/radio, you can have a friend speak into a microphone or even play voice recordings, just make sure it's voices and not music so it's more authentic. Hopefully you can make it loud enough that you can hear it clearly across the arena, but anything helps.

That's all I can think of for now, but if anything else comes to mind I'll let you know! Best of luck and most importantly, have fun!
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post #4 of 8 Old 01-21-2013, 03:23 PM Thread Starter
Green Broke
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Thanks! So far I've had him since November but he's currentt testing me on our rides and such. But anywa I plan on bringing him to local arenas and lunging him or walking around. Ill see if maybe I can get a big microphone or something of the like. Thanks!

Also- my guy is 12, is it that hard to get an 'older' (so to speak) horse to get use to the routine?
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post #5 of 8 Old 01-21-2013, 04:19 PM
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Hmm, I don't think that age really matters. I would think it's more a factor of the horses's personality and trust in the rider. When I showed Sock, I had only had him for about 6 months and other than the riding time I've personally put on him as a 6yo, he had 60 days with a trainer when he was 2 1/2 then spent most of his time out with a herd.

The fact that your horse is much older and very likely has more miles on him than mine should be a plus, especially if he's used to trails.
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post #6 of 8 Old 01-21-2013, 08:40 PM
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Spend a lot of time with your horse, just hanging out, so his trust in you builds. The PA system isn't usually a problem but going by an elevated announcer's booth can worry a horse.
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-21-2013, 08:42 PM
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I think the best thing you can do is just simply get out there and start going to small local shows.
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-21-2013, 09:31 PM Thread Starter
Green Broke
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We are planning on attending and showing low key this year. I don't show to be competitive. Just to have fun :)
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