Being Impossible Or Something Serious? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 8 Old 09-07-2011, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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Being Impossible Or Something Serious?

Drift is 13 years old and has definitely been through a lot in his time, but this I just do not understand.

I have only ridden him once since I got him, but I've tacked him up and 'ponied' him behind Ray while I rode HIM. He has no problem with tack when it is on him or on the ground, but when you are PUTTING it on him OR taking it off, he has a cow! He pinns his ears back, stomps his hooves, and swishes his tail back and forth repeatedly (irregardless of flies). I can take the saddle pad and put it on, then take it off over and over again and he seems to calm down a little, but still pins his ears back. When I first got him, he didn't do this, but he would shy away from bridles. (Not halters.) Now it's backwards- He has no headshy problems, but Ray does. Ray, who has NEVER had a bad experiance with ANYTHING, will roll his eyes back and lift his head while rapidly blinking when I try to put a bridle on until I put my hand on his neck and force his head down and tell him how silly he's being. Then he all of a sudden calms down.

Does anyone know why they switched personalities or how to overcome Drift's fear of being tacked up? Will this affect how they act under saddle at all?
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post #2 of 8 Old 09-07-2011, 07:36 PM
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Have both the horses had their teeth and back checked? This is the first thing I'd make sure of to rule out all pain and health issues.

Also, could it be possible that these horses are the 'leaders' in the relationships instead of you being in charge they feel that they can take charge. I'd do loads of groundwork and getting yourself in charge and getting them confident and respectful with tack. Introducing the tack again, grooming, leading, etc. You can never, ever do too much groundwork.

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post #3 of 8 Old 09-07-2011, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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My farrier is also an equestrian 'dentist' and checks on them every time he comes out. They are fine teeth-wise, and I often do ground work with them.
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post #4 of 8 Old 09-07-2011, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Opaqueiffy View Post
My farrier is also an equestrian 'dentist' and checks on them every time he comes out. They are fine teeth-wise, and I often do ground work with them.
What about their backs? Their saddles? Their bits? How much experience do you have?

There is so much which needs to be ticked off being you try and solve a training issue which isn't there.

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post #5 of 8 Old 09-07-2011, 07:44 PM
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I agree with Chinga. It sounds like it's a saddle fit problem with Drift.

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post #6 of 8 Old 09-07-2011, 08:10 PM
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Are you sure of the saddle fit? Or is there perhaps antying sharp on the pad or saddle that jabs him when it does go on? In the ground work you do, you might want to work on desensitziing him to things going over his back because they move from being seen in one eye, to the other and this can spook a horse.
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post #7 of 8 Old 09-08-2011, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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The saddle I use on him was adjusted to custom fit his back, and I have a weaver saddle pad with memory foam in it and wool on the bottom. He gets brushed before every tack-up, nothing is poking him, the bit I use doesn't bother them at all, and I've been riding since I learned to walk.

I worked with them again today and tossed my hoodie onto the saddle (on drift's back) and he didn't even twitch an ear at it. But he still protested to the saddle and pad going on. Even using the lightest saddle I own!
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-08-2011, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Opaqueiffy View Post
The saddle I use on him was adjusted to custom fit his back, and I have a weaver saddle pad with memory foam in it and wool on the bottom. He gets brushed before every tack-up, nothing is poking him, the bit I use doesn't bother them at all, and I've been riding since I learned to walk.

I worked with them again today and tossed my hoodie onto the saddle (on drift's back) and he didn't even twitch an ear at it. But he still protested to the saddle and pad going on. Even using the lightest saddle I own!

Even if your saddle fits him correctly, he probably got these issues with his back from when he was with his previous owner. Please have his back checked.


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