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Best way to introduce two horses?

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  • Best way to introduce two horses
  • Best way to introduce horses to each other

 
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    04-01-2013, 08:54 AM
  #1
Weanling
Question Best way to introduce two horses?

I have a 12 year old gelding and a yearling filly. I plan on showing both of them this year, so they will have to trailer together and be next to each other in the stall overnight.

In the limited interaction they've had with each other (mostly for photos) my gelding will pin his ears and snap at her if she gets too close. He's not a very aggressive horse, but is the alpha horse in his pasture and can get a little uppity if he thinks a horse is going to take his food!
Obviously it isn't a good idea to turn them out together due to the huge age difference (and the fact that there are 7 other older horses out there), but it isn't possible to have the filly turned out in the pasture right next to his.

Any ideas?
     
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    04-04-2013, 11:31 PM
  #2
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaneyWaney9    
I have a 12 year old gelding and a yearling filly. I plan on showing both of them this year, so they will have to trailer together and be next to each other in the stall overnight.

In the limited interaction they've had with each other (mostly for photos) my gelding will pin his ears and snap at her if she gets too close. He's not a very aggressive horse, but is the alpha horse in his pasture and can get a little uppity if he thinks a horse is going to take his food!
Obviously it isn't a good idea to turn them out together due to the huge age difference (and the fact that there are 7 other older horses out there), but it isn't possible to have the filly turned out in the pasture right next to his.

Any ideas?

I introduced my insanely dominant half arab to our yearling 2 years ago. The yearling was loose in the pasture, and I had my half arab on a lunge line. There was plenty of grass available and I let them graze together for like 5 minutes, and then unclipped the line. They just kept on grazing. Also, just having your horses meet over a fence on a lead, and let them sniff helps tremendously! I did this before putting them together too. My half arab would squel and strike out at the fence when I did this.

The thing is, I wouldn't just throw them in a pasture together and hope for the best if you think your older horse will actually hurt the yearling. Also with my half arab, we put a 3 yr old, huge QH in with him right away and it looked like it would be a fight to the death. My half arab chased the QH at a dead run for 20+ minutes until we grabbed the QH's halter and snuck him out of the gate. Nexy time we put them together, they were fine.

Just really watch the body language of them. If the yearling is a clingy horse to other's and gets to close to the older one, a little kick won't hurt her, and she will learn not to mess with him. It's all a guessing game on how it will go. I wish I could explain what is in my head more clearly! good luck!
     
    04-04-2013, 11:55 PM
  #3
Weanling
When I first introduced my mini mare and gelding to each they had already had about 2 weeks of getting used to each other over an electrified fence. At first he did try and kick her a few times and chased her around for a bit, I always stayed close by given the huge size difference between them.

That was a year ago and they can now graze together for a few hours every day with no issues, I have never seen him kick out at her since but I would never feed them in the same area as that would probably create a kicking match.

All horses are different but I've never had any major issues with introducing new horses to each other.
     
    04-05-2013, 11:03 AM
  #4
Yearling
If you don't think the older horse would intentionally hurt her, just stick them in together and get out of the way.
     
    04-05-2013, 11:43 AM
  #5
Super Moderator
I've had/have horses that don't socialize very well and can look really hostile towards others but they still have to learn that behaving like that isn't acceptable when in a 'being handled' situation.
If you don't want to risk your youngster getting injured then find time to lead the two horses together, have them stand together while you're controlling the situation and be really firm about any bad attitude.
The Clyde x mare in my current avatar is a real bully in the field but I can lead her with another horse, ride right close along side another horse, lead another horse off her and she trailers along side other horses with no trouble at all because she knows that her bad attitude isn't acceptable once she has a halter or tack on
     

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