Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Hatton Vale, QLD, Australia
we have just been through this exact thing with my wb. My husband came within inches of copping a fair kick from a 17.2hh wb which is a scary prospect.
We had to get him to trust us and to be calm etc we did some bonding and calming techniques we learnt from frank bell. We spent a lot of time doing the pull and release on his halter to get him to bring his head down and relax. When we had him doing this, we would gently pet him all over focusing on his happy places :) when he freaked out, we would bring his head back down. When that didnt work, we bought his head around to his side so he was tucked away in his safe spot. Eventually he calmed enough to let us do as we please.
You can get sent a free dvd from frank bell on the basics of the 7 steps of natural horsemanship. I can't remember the exact site but type frank bell into google and have a look around. I can't speak highly enough of the methods used and what it has done for our wb. We still have issues to work through but the change in him is so amazing and we have only had him 3 weeks now.
Your horse has to understand that you arent going to hurt him. He needs to completely trust you considering he has obviously come from an unfavourable environment. Once you build that friendship and trust, you will be able to do anything with him.
Having said all that, is there any chance that he is suffering some kind of pain in relation to his feet?? Could be either of his back feet as generally speaking, if it was that foot that was causing him trouble, lifting it should be better for him unless he has soreness under/inside the hoof. If you have a good, gentle, knowledgable farrier, it might be an idea to give him a call as well. Our farrier was the first to be able to successfully pick up and deal with his feet.
Good luck with it all. Its so frustrating sometimes when we can't do the simplest of thigns that we normally take for granted :)
"I whisper but my horse doesnt listen...So I yell!!...He still doesnt listen"