Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Tampa Bay area, FL
How do I recondition him?
So I had the chiropractor/massage therapist come out for Ice today, and his attitude went from unsure about what she was doing, to kind of in to it, to down right hostile. There was nothing seriously wrong with him, he had some kind of knot in his neck that when we pressed on he might has well have fell down in relaxation, and one spot on his left shoulder where he had a knot in his muscles, so it was not a pain reaction.I kind of expected him to be a little nippy, that's just how he is when he's unhappy (and most of it was at her, which she was fine to let him do within reason) but there were a few times when he lunged and bared his teeth at me just because I was in front of him and wanted to pet him! It was obvious it was a defense mechanism, and between myself, her, and my barn owner/manager, we've decided that its his track attitude coming in to play...where he trusts me but he doesn't trust me in that I am going to come back tomorrow and not drop him off somewhere else. I understand that, because he did change hands frequently during the last leg of his racing career (he was in a lot of claims races) so he's used to being passed around...but is there something I can do, or is it just a time thing? He is the kind of horse who needs a job, he can't just sit and be loved on all day, so will starting some serious training alleviate some of his stress/aggression? There are some days I wish horses could talk and he could just tell me what he's thinking! It's quite obvious in his eye that he's either a grump or unsure....very rarely is he ever truly 'soft'. (Except when he approaches me when I come to bring him up from turn out)....I know the first day after we moved him from his old house to my barn he even heard me call his name and he called back out to me! So I know he appreciates me being there......but its just slightly frustrating, all the other horses at the barn have these great personalities and he just has a wall!
So that was a little rambly, but I'm pretty sure its understandable.