Bad Ground Manners - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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Bad Ground Manners

The horse than I usually ride (those of you who posted in my other thread will know about her) is very bad when it comes to ground manners. She is nasty to other horses, which wouldn't be so bad if she were good to humans. However, she kicks and bites humans as well as horses.

Usually, I find that being gentle and calm around her will keep her happy, and when she's not kicking or biting she is very sweet. However, she can tend to be moody, and often times just swings around and kicks/bites me for no reason at all. She does this even when I am merely grooming her gently. Yelling 'quit' and tugging the lead rope or crossties works for most horses, but not her. She just waits until my guard is down and then has another go. She even manages to nail me with a firm kick when I'm standing beside her without swinging her body around.

She's especially sensitive around the girth area. Even putting my hand there to feel if she has any dirt there results in an attempted kick or bite. It's even worse when I'm doing up the girth. She also hates it when I put tack on her back... even if its only a saddle pad. She has been checked by a vet and has no injuries or problems.

I ride her often, and so I need to know how to stop this behavior. She does this to everyone. What she needs is a trainer to help stop this unwanted behavior, but since she is a lesson horse that is not up to me to decide. But in the mean time, I need to know how to deal with it.

Thanks!

:) Live your dreams ~ Only you can choose your future :)
XD Laugh at your mistakes ~ You learn from them XD
<3 Love with all your heart ~ Chances are meant to be taken <3

Last edited by maura; 06-05-2011 at 07:32 PM.
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post #2 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 07:07 PM
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Poor horse needs to NOT be a lesson horse and go to someone who will earn and keep her respect...period. She "may" learn how to behave/respect you, but that will not go across the board, so she will still be a danger to others who have no interest in gaining her respect and only want to ride. That's the problem with horses who are in alot of lesson situations...you have riders who aren't experienced in handling a horse, and then you have horses that shouldn't even BE in that situation in the first place...and this is what happens. It's not the horse's fault, is the owner's fault for putting her in that situation. Since you are not the owner of the animal you are kind of "Stuck"...since you aren't in a position to train or send the animal to a trainer.

"The ideal horseman has the courage of a lion, the patience of a saint, and the hands of a woman..."
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post #3 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 07:26 PM
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Sounds like she is walking all over you and other people.

I know how to fix it, but your not going to listen to it so I'm not going to annoy you with it.

Horses are scared of two things... Things that move and things that don't.
Ray MacDonald is offline  
post #4 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 10:12 PM
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+1 on Mom2Pride. I can easily imagine a horse that bites, kicks, is twitchy, and won't respond appropriately to leg aids (this is the horse that won't keep the canter, no?), and who has a history of other bad manners too. What I can't imagine is any responsible stable owner or trainer putting this horse out as a lesson horse.

I understand you have a special relationship with this animal, but this horse does not sound in the least bit appropriate for use in lessons. She's (this is a mare, IIRC) not going to give appropriate reinforcement to the riders when they do things *correctly* which is going to lead to the riders developing bad habits to get around her quirky stuff.

And from her standpoint, as a twitchy critter, it seems like being a lesson horse is the worst possible career! It sounds like this horse needs to be someone's one-and-only, and at this point, a project too.

She might be *your* project, but she shouldn't be getting farmed out to others for lessons, and given the amount of work it sounds like you're wanting (and needing) to put into her, you should be getting compensation. Some kind of lease, maybe? I don't know, but I do know that the effort you're putting in is likely to get undone as soon as she gets someone else in the saddle for another lesson. :(
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post #5 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 10:19 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
Sounds like she is walking all over you and other people.

I know how to fix it, but your not going to listen to it so I'm not going to annoy you with it.
Excuse me? What did I do to deserve that kind of a response? I wouldn't ask the question if I didn't want answers. Right now I'm open to trying just about anything unless you tell me to beat her black and blue. If you know how to fix it, I'd be happy to hear it.

:) Live your dreams ~ Only you can choose your future :)
XD Laugh at your mistakes ~ You learn from them XD
<3 Love with all your heart ~ Chances are meant to be taken <3
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post #6 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by serafina View Post
+1 on Mom2Pride. I can easily imagine a horse that bites, kicks, is twitchy, and won't respond appropriately to leg aids (this is the horse that won't keep the canter, no?), and who has a history of other bad manners too. What I can't imagine is any responsible stable owner or trainer putting this horse out as a lesson horse.

I understand you have a special relationship with this animal, but this horse does not sound in the least bit appropriate for use in lessons. She's (this is a mare, IIRC) not going to give appropriate reinforcement to the riders when they do things *correctly* which is going to lead to the riders developing bad habits to get around her quirky stuff.

And from her standpoint, as a twitchy critter, it seems like being a lesson horse is the worst possible career! It sounds like this horse needs to be someone's one-and-only, and at this point, a project too.

She might be *your* project, but she shouldn't be getting farmed out to others for lessons, and given the amount of work it sounds like you're wanting (and needing) to put into her, you should be getting compensation. Some kind of lease, maybe? I don't know, but I do know that the effort you're putting in is likely to get undone as soon as she gets someone else in the saddle for another lesson. :(
I agree with you completely that she shouldn't be a lesson horse. I feel aweful for her. Though right now I don't have enough money to lease her, I am looking into part boarding her. That basically means that I'll be allowed to come and ride her two or three times a week plus one weekly lesson. I feel like if I give her enough time and love she'll become a great little pony, but at the moment that is very difficult when I can only see her once a week and have a bunch of other people riding her as well. :(

:) Live your dreams ~ Only you can choose your future :)
XD Laugh at your mistakes ~ You learn from them XD
<3 Love with all your heart ~ Chances are meant to be taken <3
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post #7 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 11:22 PM
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She needs to learn how to respect you first...don't coddle this horse; teach her that YOU are her leader, or she will continue to test your authority. A horse that kicks and bites like she sounds like she does, is a horse that is basically telling you "move it, get away from me, don't touch me, etc..."

Start taking her out of the barn to do your grooming, tacking up, etc...maybe a round pen if you have access. Every time she gets snotty on you, make her move her feet; yield her hips, back her, lunge her, do sending exercises, etc... every time she wants you to stop what you are doing, move her feet, and make her work (the harder you can work her, the quicker she will catch on that being 'quiet', and complient, is the best answer.). Keep in mind, she may take longer to grasp the concept, simply because you are not the only one handling her, and she may never be fully trustworthy (again, due to the inconsistancy in handlers). But with some time and consistency on your part, she should start to realize that you aren't going to accept her behavior.

"The ideal horseman has the courage of a lion, the patience of a saint, and the hands of a woman..."
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post #8 of 9 Old 06-06-2011, 07:54 AM
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This horse is in a very sad situation. She needs to be taken out of being a school/lesson horse as she has put up with such inconsistent handling her mind is possibly damaged beyond rehabilitation.
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post #9 of 9 Old 06-06-2011, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mom2pride View Post
She needs to learn how to respect you first...don't coddle this horse; teach her that YOU are her leader, or she will continue to test your authority. A horse that kicks and bites like she sounds like she does, is a horse that is basically telling you "move it, get away from me, don't touch me, etc..."

Start taking her out of the barn to do your grooming, tacking up, etc...maybe a round pen if you have access. Every time she gets snotty on you, make her move her feet; yield her hips, back her, lunge her, do sending exercises, etc... every time she wants you to stop what you are doing, move her feet, and make her work (the harder you can work her, the quicker she will catch on that being 'quiet', and complient, is the best answer.). Keep in mind, she may take longer to grasp the concept, simply because you are not the only one handling her, and she may never be fully trustworthy (again, due to the inconsistancy in handlers). But with some time and consistency on your part, she should start to realize that you aren't going to accept her behavior.
This is one of the ways I like to fix the problem, the other way I was originally thinking of was to kick her in the butt like another more dominate horse would, or give a good swat with a dressage whip.

Sorry, I didn't mean to sound snarky to you, but I am not a believer that if you have a disrepectful horse you should just give more "love" to it and it will change for you.

Horses are scared of two things... Things that move and things that don't.
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