Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: west palm beach, fl
As loosie said, he doesn't seem to see you as his buddy right now. Instead of lunging him, work on your relationship. Give him treats when you great him, talk to him while you groom him, do some positive reinforcement groundwork, maybe teach a few tricks like giving a hug or "shaking hands". After a few sessions of that, then you can start asking him to work for you.
Bringing him back to work will take time. Do some trotting both ways in increasing increments for the first couple weeks, then throw in a couple canter rounds both ways for a couple weeks, then half and half the trot and canter. After about six weeks, you should have half and hour of walk trot canter workout, along with whatever under saddle you've started.
As for the circle, for the beginning of bringing him back, a 30ft diameter is fine. After the first week, try sending him further out at the trot, say. 40ft circle. By the time he starts to canter you want at least 50ft. If he still seems to lean, (after a week of cantering on the line) tug the lead rope in towards you, so that he lifts his nose and turns it towards you. This will help round out his body, and shift his weight so he's carrying himself instead of relying on momentum. Don't allow him to stop or come towards you, push him through it or push him away when he tries.
My annie had this problem when she came to me as she was very full of herself and convinced that people and cantering were for dogs.
Good luck :)
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