Mare was a total jerk today--bit of a rant
My mare and I are still getting used to each other, but she is coming along nicely. The more work I do with her, the better she does, and the more I realize she wasn't as broke as I thought she was. It's fine because I have enough confidence to ride her, and I'm excited for room to grow.
So I'm brushing her in her stall today as a friend and I were preparing to go on a trail ride. Everything was fine, she has her head low and is being respectful. I'm at her shoulder brushing her and she turns her head around and bites me!!!
I gave her a swift smack on the shoulder and yelled at her. I then quickly and assertively made her yield her hindquarters (something we've been working on as I've been teaching her groundwork)
I believe that there are unacceptable behaviors that should be disciplined, and biting is one of them.
Anyway, after I showed her that I'm not one to mess with, and biting is not acceptable, I continued brushing.
Then we hit the trails and everything went well at first. We had a long straight path and decided to canter a little bit. She started bucking, which she hasn't done before. I rode through it fine, but it just pissed me off. She wasn't just doing a little buck, she was arching her back and bucking like a bronco or something.
We trotted for a while and then we tried cantering again, and she did fine and was going smooth, and then started galloping, and when I asked her to slow back down, she started bucking again, and this time, the saddle came up onto her neck. I checked my girth 3 times before we left, but apparently that's not enough! So then we stopped, I assertively yielded her hindquarters again and asked her to drop her head to the ground, and then I fixed my saddle.
We didn't canter again, but once she realized how hilly and difficult the trail was, she realized that maybe she shouldn't have wasted so much energy being stupid!
After that, she was perfect. I was just super pissed that she was being such a jerk from the beginning. How do you teach a horse that bucking is not an acceptable behavior, except to ride through it?
Later I was wondering if when we were cantering, she could feel the saddle slipping around and that's why she started bucking. I've always used this saddle and never had issues bucking at a canter before or any other signs of a poor fit.