Hitting me with her head..bad habit AND mane
   

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Hitting me with her head..bad habit AND mane

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  • Horse hit me with her head

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    01-12-2013, 09:10 PM
  #1
Foal
Hitting me with her head..bad habit AND mane

Fancy, my new mare, is a GREAT mare, but she has one really bad habit; when your brushing her neck or shoulder, she'll hit you with her head. She'll also rub her head on you. We think it's because her previous owner let her get away with it We've been patting her neck and keeping our elbow up and pushing her away when she does it. Seems to be working pretty well, but does anyone else have any tips? Thanks ^_^
Also, I have 2 questions about her mane; she has one part that got pulled out; her previous owner told us that they arent sure what happened but they think that she got her mane caught in something and pulled it out. Also, the chunk of her mane closest to her forelock is on the opposite side of the rest of her mane; how can I get it stay to the other side? Thanks
     
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    01-12-2013, 09:38 PM
  #2
Yearling
For me, any attempts to knock her head against mine or bump me would result in a firm "KNOCK IT OFF" and pushing her head away. I like the elbow bump as well, so she hits herself...

For the mane, horses typically rub them out different ways. Putting their head through the fence rails / feed bars/ fencing is a big one, hoods can do it too. To retrain her mane try braiding it in bigger sections. Get it damp and braid it on the side you want it to stay - that will help train it for the desired side.
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    01-12-2013, 11:52 PM
  #3
Foal
Something that I've found to be somewhat helpful when my horse does something I don't approve of, I just give a quick snap on the lead rope or cross tie. I don't believe in corporal punishment for my training methods, and I'm not too big on tough love, but I know that sometimes there is a balance and you need to be firm. I found that this is a non-painful way to let a horse know that you mean business and that they need to listen..

As far as the mane, my horse had the same issue when I first had her. I waited for the chunk to grow out enough, then pulled the whole mane to even out to that chunk. It looked great being so short! Since then, her mane has grown out a really nice even length. I also suggest moisturizing with a good spray (I use Mane&Tail Spray) which has kept my horse's mane and tail in great condition. Not quite sure about the direction of the mane... keep brushing it over and maybe try moisturizing it in that direction? Keep up the good work & God bless!
     
    01-13-2013, 12:18 AM
  #4
Started
I don't want my horses to be head-shy, so I wouldn't hit her or elbow her in the face (though if she runs into a well placed elbow on her own...), but it IS a bad habit she's obviously been allowed to practice. Frankly, I would smack her shoulder with my flat hand so it makes a loud noise and say "No" firmly. She'll probably jump, which is what I want, and then I'll continue on grooming like it never happened. Rinse, repeat until she realizes that the new world order is that there is no rubbing. If she doesn't react, then I'd swat her harder or run her off if that's what it takes to get her attention. I hate rubbing on me and getting in my space uninvited. For reference, my horse continues to be very cuddly and is not scared of me with this treatment. He just knows that he can't barge in on me- he has to wait until I ask for his head.

My guy's mane is all over on both sides... so no help there! ;)
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    01-13-2013, 07:30 AM
  #5
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharpie    
I don't want my horses to be head-shy, so I wouldn't hit her or elbow her in the face (though if she runs into a well placed elbow on her own...), but it IS a bad habit she's obviously been allowed to practice. Frankly, I would smack her shoulder with my flat hand so it makes a loud noise and say "No" firmly. She'll probably jump, which is what I want, and then I'll continue on grooming like it never happened. Rinse, repeat until she realizes that the new world order is that there is no rubbing. If she doesn't react, then I'd swat her harder or run her off if that's what it takes to get her attention. I hate rubbing on me and getting in my space uninvited. For reference, my horse continues to be very cuddly and is not scared of me with this treatment. He just knows that he can't barge in on me- he has to wait until I ask for his head.

My guy's mane is all over on both sides... so no help there! ;)
Thats kinda what I meant, we've been having our elbow there whenever we think she is going to do it so that she would hit our elbow and turn away (: Thanks!
     
    01-13-2013, 12:46 PM
  #6
Yearling
I had that problem with one of my mares when I first got her. She didn't respect space, and if she was going somewhere she would expect you to move. She'd nearly given me a concussion a few times. I'd try to build a better foundation with ground work. If the mare goes to rub on you with her head then I'd do sort of a chicken-wing and continue until moves out of your space and then some. You don't have to go out of your way, it is just to teach them that is an uncomfortable place to be, why would you want to be there? And doing a chicken-wing elbow sort of flapping up and down when she gets in your space is different than just smacking her one. It is more rhythmic, and they have the choice of whether or not they want to be in that zone. Once they are out of your space the pressure is relieved.

I'm not the best at explaining it, but I've found it to work along with consistent ground work. The mare that I had this problem with is fifteen and considered completely broke. Which meant she was ride-able, so no one did ground work with her any more. I've come really far with her, to where she is more willing, and doesn't spend all of her time pinning her ears, bobbing her head, and looking for her next victim. Now she respects my space, but isn't head shy at all. I've had to whack her a few times, but she wasn't going to hesitate to run me over, either. Good luck, and remember these things take time, but you don't have to baby them through it, either. If another horse got up in the lead mare's business, said mare would have no problem dishing it out.

Also, on the whole mane dilemma; I am training a horse for a friend, and the horse's mane was rubbed off from the round bale feeder they have. My solution was to just chop the whole thing off so it grows in even. A bit extreme, but it is looking good on him so far and has grown out a good bit.
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    01-13-2013, 07:13 PM
  #7
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by ButtInTheDirt    
I had that problem with one of my mares when I first got her. She didn't respect space, and if she was going somewhere she would expect you to move. She'd nearly given me a concussion a few times. I'd try to build a better foundation with ground work. If the mare goes to rub on you with her head then I'd do sort of a chicken-wing and continue until moves out of your space and then some. You don't have to go out of your way, it is just to teach them that is an uncomfortable place to be, why would you want to be there? And doing a chicken-wing elbow sort of flapping up and down when she gets in your space is different than just smacking her one. It is more rhythmic, and they have the choice of whether or not they want to be in that zone. Once they are out of your space the pressure is relieved.

I'm not the best at explaining it, but I've found it to work along with consistent ground work. The mare that I had this problem with is fifteen and considered completely broke. Which meant she was ride-able, so no one did ground work with her any more. I've come really far with her, to where she is more willing, and doesn't spend all of her time pinning her ears, bobbing her head, and looking for her next victim. Now she respects my space, but isn't head shy at all. I've had to whack her a few times, but she wasn't going to hesitate to run me over, either. Good luck, and remember these things take time, but you don't have to baby them through it, either. If another horse got up in the lead mare's business, said mare would have no problem dishing it out.

Also, on the whole mane dilemma; I am training a horse for a friend, and the horse's mane was rubbed off from the round bale feeder they have. My solution was to just chop the whole thing off so it grows in even. A bit extreme, but it is looking good on him so far and has grown out a good bit.
Thanks, that helped a lot!
     
    01-13-2013, 07:20 PM
  #8
Started
My geldings mane is on opposite sides. If I brush it and put it in rubber bands it will stay all on the right for a few days but always goes back to being split.
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    01-13-2013, 08:09 PM
  #9
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phly    
My geldings mane is on opposite sides. If I brush it and put it in rubber bands it will stay all on the right for a few days but always goes back to being split.
Posted via Mobile Device
I'd only need it for a day, I don't care but if I go to my first show ever O.O this summer I want Fancy to look perfect <3
     
    01-13-2013, 08:52 PM
  #10
Started
When it's "done" it'll stay that way till the rubber bands break. Like this, It lasts a few days. if you look at the fourth or fith section from his head you can see they don't lay as nice. That's the area that goes to the left. But will stay this way as long as the bands hold
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