Argh! What an annoying phase! - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By DrumRunner
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 5 Old 02-16-2012, 09:50 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: New England
Posts: 784
• Horses: 1
Argh! What an annoying phase!

My boy, who ordinarily stands like a champ to halter up, has decided in the last week that he doesn't need to halter up, and that he can put his butt to me when I ask. This isn't in the least bit OK, of course, and he gets a good firm flick on the rump from the business end of the lead rope...but he is taking forever to get the point of understanding that the easy thing is standing to halter, and the hard thing is not standing to halter. The last couple of times I've gone to collect him from the paddock it has taken 30+ minutes to get from walking through the gate to walking back out of it again with a horse.

Before anyone jumps me about this, my trainer is on it, and I'm doing what she says I need to, and she thinks that it's not something I'm doing to provoke this, but that it's a combination of spring, weather changes, a pack of mares in the adjacent paddock and some possible totally new herd-bound-ness, and she considers this to be a "phase". So I'm not at a loss about how to deal with it...I'm just...ARGH!! I don't lose my patience or temper at all in the paddock, I'm not really even tempted to...but geez. Why this? It's like he accelerated from being a sweet-tempered 10 yo kid to being a moody and hormonal teenager.

I knew having horses was like having kids, but I didn't really expect this.

Trainer has assured me that my current approach (sending him away as soon as he backs up or starts to turn away, keeping him moving, not letting him stop to hang out with the mares/eat/drink, engaging in some body language that I can only think of as "horse flirting" - passive, making him chase me, etc.) will work if I am 100% consistent with it. Says in her experience, if you're consistent, firm, and patient, the horse will just drop it eventually. I'm sure she's right, and I'm prepared to stick with it.

But DARN IT. I can think of ten more interesting things to do with my horse than muck about in a muddy, icy, freezing paddock persuading him to go into the halter. Argh.

Thanks for the vent. I know I am not alone in this, I know horses do wack stuff from time to time, I know they often test their owners. I just find this much less...interesting...and more...tedious...than other testing that he's done.
ThursdayNext is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 Old 02-16-2012, 10:11 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Georgia
Posts: 4,962
• Horses: 3
Originally Posted by ThursdayNext View Post

I knew having horses was like having kids, but I didn't really expect this.
Laugh! This is my favorite part in your post..I think that's the point when you inherit the lead rope with a horse on the other end..You never know what to expect, except the unexpected..Horses are strange animals, who knows why they do any of the funky things and quirks they do.

If your trainer is helping you I would just stick to what your trainer is saying..S/he is there in person and can help more than we can and knows your whole situation better than we do. Just be patient and let him figure it out without getting yourself flustered..I know it's hard.. Our horses are on 18 acres of open field..If one (usually sister's gelding) decides to play hard to get, the whole group runs around like mad idiots...My usually easy to catch horses have lost their minds..I give them a few chances of me standing there to come in and be haltered but if they don't..I am not chasing them around an 18 acres pasture and wearing myself out..They think it's great fun..until I bring out the golf cart of fourwheeler...I usually have another person with me and I will stand in the pasture looking all sweet and "safe" and the horses get chased by the ATV until they decide "it's a good idea to go to Mom, I can stop working when I'm with her and she has cookies."...We rarely have to do that but it never fails to work.

I am Sparkly Meanie Doodie Head and I approve this message!
DrumRunner is offline  
post #3 of 5 Old 02-16-2012, 10:32 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: New England
Posts: 784
• Horses: 1
hehehe...I'm seeing this with the ATV. Mastermind!

I'm sure my trainer is right, I'm sure I'll do the right thing by Huey, but OY!! It's like dealing with a little kid having a melt-down, you know it's because the kid is overwhelmed by things, so it makes no sense to get ticked off, but it's still something I'd rather not have.

At least it's a paddock of manageable size and he's in it by himself. This would be 1,000 more of a PITA if he were in with a herd or on a nice big expanse of pasture. At least I've figured out how to keep him moving yet also keep him out of the icy corner of the paddock.
ThursdayNext is offline  
post #4 of 5 Old 02-16-2012, 10:44 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Georgia
Posts: 4,962
• Horses: 3
Exactly..It's rather annoying and even thought it makes you want to pull your hair out, just remember to stay cool about it. My sister is hilarious when she's the "catcher"...She'll be talking to her horse in a super sweet voice "Ohh Tucker, I'm going to kill you when I catch you. I know who is not getting any treats..I am going to make you wish you had came to me. You are for sale."..and of course he doesn't know what the heck she's saying but it sounds nice to him...

lol Venting about it here is probably a good thing instead of dwelling on it and letting it ruffle your feathers..I can sympathize and know exactly how you feel! Hopefully this "stage" will pass quickly and he'll realize he's just being a nerd and making it take longer..
ThursdayNext likes this.

I am Sparkly Meanie Doodie Head and I approve this message!
DrumRunner is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old 02-17-2012, 12:32 AM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 40,782
• Horses: 2
your trainer has the right idea. HOwever, you might practice the "art of catching a horse" in a round pen or smaller paddock til you get good at it and to help him learn it better.
tinyliny is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Can you tell if horses are just a phase? gottatrot Horse Talk 1 01-31-2011 02:17 AM
Rocky's first ever 3-phase! EventingIsLovee Eventing 8 09-29-2009 07:17 PM
Dressage Phase Apparel EventingIsLovee Eventing 6 09-20-2009 12:17 PM
Just a Phase? gabrielstriumph Horse Training 4 05-24-2009 11:17 AM
Has anyone competed in the Three Phase Event? Angilina Horse Shows 0 09-26-2008 10:37 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome