I just met a new friend who loves to ride horses as much as I do. We have been riding together for a couple of months now. She has a young horse that spooks at everything. If we meet someone on the trail and they have a dog, my new friend becomes worried that her horse will spoke because of the dog and it usually does. Not only does it spook at dogs, but at everything, leaves, squrriels. Other horses, trash cans, people, and even trees that have fallen down.
My horses, ( I have four now) are not usually spooky at all. They are use to many different trails and around many different situations. I notice recently her horse is so jumpy that my horse has started to be a little jumpy if I ride behind her horse. So, when I ride with her I started to ride my horse (G-Man) in front and keep him in a running walk and busy paying attention to me and it seemed to help him from being so jumpy.
This month I have started breaking a young two year old filly, Cinnamon. I am concerned about riding this young horse with a horse that is skidish . So, I asked her to ride one of my horses that is very confident and doesn't usually spook at anything and is really easy to handle. She was willing to ride my horse but wanted to get use to her before she rode her on the trials. I had her to ride in a large arena to get use to my horse, Dancer. I let my dog go over to the arena with us because I thought it would be good for the young horse, Cinnamon to get use to dogs riding with us.
Now Dancer,the horse that my friend was riding has ridden with this dog over a hundred times so I wasn't worried about the horse being nervous about the dog. We started riding in the arena which is a very large arena and I had my friend ride one end and I was going to ride the young filly and the other end with the dog. There is cattle in the field running around and other horses in another field and a tractor going two fields away and several things that I wanted my young horse exposed to under controlled circumstances. My little filly was doing great.
Now my friend was very nervous about the dog, cattle and the different things going on and I reminded her that the horse she was riding was used to all this. I no more got it out of my mouth when this experience horse that I have ridden many times with out one situation, spooked and stopped real fast throwing the person on her neck. This scared my friend and she was ready to bail off. I calmed the friend down and she rode a little bit longer in the arena but I noticed from then on my horse that she was riding was acting like she was scared of everything. My friend did not want to ride her on the trail. So we didn't ride the trail.
The next day, I rode the horse that I let my friend ride. I went back to same arena had the dog with me and the horses were in one field and the cattle in the other field as it was the day before. The only thing different was the tractor wasn't there and I was riding her by myself. The cows even ran from the horse when I got to close to the fence were they where at. She didn't do a thing.
I was wondering why she acted that way with my friend but was fine with me? I am wondering if it is because she is use to me and I feel confident riding her. I don't know what she spooked at with my friend, she thought it was the dog.
Does anyone have any insight on this? I would like to help my friend but not sure what to say to her....