Barn Sour

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Barn Sour

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    10-22-2008, 01:33 PM
Barn Sour

Hey guys, well this probly has kinda sprang up and it is becoming a problem. Nana runs on about 3 or 4 acres, but when I ride her in the direction of the barn (not actually goin to the barn) she will power walk or break into a trot when I want her to only walk.

I am gettin alittle frustrated, and yesterday I tried make it seem like I was goin to the barn but then I turned her around and walked back. Basically every time she tried to trot to the barn I would turn her back around and walk the back, or I would make her stop..

I need some advice on how to fix this.
Also, I want to slow Nana lope down abit because she just floors it when we hit the lope and I just want her to stay at the nice and easy lope..
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    10-22-2008, 01:40 PM
You are on the right track. Make it "work" for her to go back to the barn. As soon as she starts to speed up make her trot circles, back her, turn around and trot away, etc... Hopefully after a few rides she will start to get the point...

Good luck and Have Fun!!
    10-22-2008, 01:55 PM
Never dismount at the barn/or gate...end your excersise in a different place every day and dismount and "walk" her into the barn. I know its not exactly the easiest way but, this way she will never know when you are about to finish up with her. You may ride for one hour or 3..but she will begin to think nothing of the direction of the barn.

To slow her down at the lope.. you can try stopping her every few, lope till she gets fast and the second she does say woah and come to a complete stop. Once your satisfied ask for a lope again. If this continues then repeat the process. This was my method to convince my pleasure horse to slow down. This will not turn nana into a pleasure horse. She will begin to think that" when I start to go fast he makes me stop" since she wants to go she will become content at "your" speed. Good luck!
    10-22-2008, 01:56 PM
Super Moderator
It takes a while to fix that. Always run AWAY from the barn and always WALK to the barn. I used to walk towards the barn and just before we'd get to the turn off... I'd trot or canter past it so that he'd miss his turn. That's not an overnight fix, you'll just have to keep forcing her to WALK to the barn....
    10-22-2008, 02:23 PM
Originally Posted by farmpony84    
Always run AWAY from the barn and always WALK to the barn.
i disagree with the run away thing b/c what will happen if nana gets loose for whatever reason? She will have it in her mind to run run run from the barn. I would not do this (jmo). I walk mine out excersise, walk back in. Now when one gets loose they generaly just walk around and are very easy to catch.
    10-22-2008, 03:06 PM
Super Moderator
Originally Posted by tbenitez    
i disagree with the run away thing b/c what will happen if nana gets loose for whatever reason? She will have it in her mind to run run run from the barn. I would not do this (jmo). I walk mine out excersise, walk back in. Now when one gets loose they generaly just walk around and are very easy to catch.
Let me rephrase that. Sorry, wording problem. I mean your trotting and cantering would be AWAY from the barn while the return trip would be a cool down and a walk. Never trot or canter to the barn. Sorry.
    10-22-2008, 05:36 PM
Green Broke
I hate barn sourness! It's a personal pet peeve of mine so I try to break that habit on any horse I ride, asap! Like people said before, always walk (or work hard) to the barn and ride faster away. A lot of my horses learn their lateral work going towards the barn. I also teach my horses that no matter where they are, if I say work, it's time to work. My suggestion is to mix up the location of work as much as you can. On the barn sour horses there are days where all I do is walk to the barn, trot away. Over and over again. Or sometimes I'll work a bit in the arena, ride down to the barn, and then lunge or work in front of the barn (we have a dirt parking lot with great footing right in front of the barn). Often I will get off, go into the barn, cross tie for 5 minutes, and then get back on and ride some more. This seems to help the most. (I had a stubborn paint mare I had to do this to like, 3 times a ride) I want them to understand that going into the barn does not mean their work is over. Or even after I'm finished riding sometimes I'll loosen the girth but let them stand in the cross ties for 5-10 minutes before untacking them. I will also get off in different places, loosen the girth, and walk back to the barn. (I want them to know that loosening their girth is a sign of a break, not proximity to the barn). Also, if you work in an arena a lot (which I don't think you do?)... I always back my horses out of the arena gate if they're barn sour. 1. It's harder to back out then walk out. 2. They start to the think backing out is the only way to leave. So If they're the type to take advantage of someone by running out the gate and to the barn, it's much easier for that kid to stop their horse from backing out the gate than galloping out.

Just a few ideas....
    10-23-2008, 12:17 AM
Green Broke
You're on the right track with what you're doing. Every time she starts to jig or break to a trot, turn her back and go further from the barn.

Also, make going away from the barn fun and being near the barn work. When you get closer to the barn, make her do some pattern work at the trot and canter, really working her hard. When you go away from the barn, do easier work at the walk and slow trot, with some breaks.

When you do get back to the barn, don't put her right back up. Tie her with her saddle still on and make her stand for 30-60 minutes. Do your chores or whatever and make her learn some patience.
    10-23-2008, 01:59 PM
Originally Posted by upnover    
I want them to understand that going into the barn does not mean their work is over.
I agree 100%. When you get back to the barn, hop off, get back on her again and work her in the ring. She'll begin to think, "Oh, maybe going back to the barn isn't so fun after all..."
    10-23-2008, 02:20 PM
There is nothing more irritating than a barn sour horse. We have race horses and when they head towards the barn "home" they figure work out time is done. Than when (in my case) when you decide to ride them they like to speed very quickly to the barn.

Do what you are doing and be patient. Like stated before its not an over night fix. MAKE her walk the speed you want and onec she does a good round, praise her for it. Some horses never get fully cured of barn sourness but there are way to minimize the symptoms ;)

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