Best technique for halter breaking a weanling? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 09-04-2011, 09:39 PM Thread Starter
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Best technique for halter breaking a weanling?

Yes, yes I know...shame on me for waiting until he was four months. Ha, well I am wanting to halter break him. It's about time I start on his ground work, now that I'm not busy with my other project horse. So, he has a halter on right now, and what technique would you recommend? P.S. When I tried it at two months or so, he flipped backward, don't know if that makes a difference..

Thanks in advance :)
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post #2 of 17 Old 09-04-2011, 10:31 PM
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The very first time I used a cotton lead rope on his halter and ran it through the ring on his mama's halter, sort of led her and let him follow his mama while feeling the pressure on his halter. Then, later, I led him with the cotton lead rope and used another longer cotton rope looped around his butt. I used that to encourage him to walk forward while I was leading him. If you use the release of pressure to reward him moving forward, he'll figure it out pretty quickly. Also, it's important to spend time getting him used to you, so standing still and being handled all over is a good project at this stage.

He needs to learn not to be afraid of the pull/pressure, so the reward/release is really important. They can break their necks or do damage to themselves from flipping over, so it is best to go slow and easy.
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post #3 of 17 Old 09-04-2011, 10:41 PM Thread Starter
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He already pick up feet and I can pet him everywhere, bathes flysprays etc :) lol just not in a lead rope. Someone gave me the idea of leaving a rope on him, and he teaches himself to give to pressure when he stepps on it.
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post #4 of 17 Old 09-04-2011, 10:50 PM
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Here's how we've halter broke babies for decades.

Make a butt rope out of small cotton line. Make a loop big enough to go over his butt/hindquarters to where it lays just above his hocks. Run the line through the ring on his halter and hold it with your lead rope. The pressure from behind will encourage them to go forward without fighting or flipping themselves backwards. At first there will probably be more pressure on the butt rope than with the lead but be sure to use both reinforcing that he should be following the lead rope.

When he takes a couple steps stop and let him relax. Then ask for a couple more. Keep sessions very short at first and always end on a good note.
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post #5 of 17 Old 09-04-2011, 10:59 PM Thread Starter
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Sounds good, I will try it tomorrow.
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post #6 of 17 Old 09-05-2011, 04:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LovesMyDunnBoy View Post
He already pick up feet and I can pet him everywhere, bathes flysprays etc :) lol just not in a lead rope. Someone gave me the idea of leaving a rope on him, and he teaches himself to give to pressure when he stepps on it.
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Leaving the lead rope on in a safe environment is a big recommendation from me, lol... I was 7months pregnant last year when I realized I had skipped this part of training with my gelding, and he freaked when he saw it drag and made the other horses run, and.... it was a mess...

Everyone has such creative ways they halter broke. Listen to them, lol...but I just put slight pressure on my weanling when I halter broke her. She had never been handled before me. So she did one backflip, but then I learned to lesson the pressure. Enough that she felt the pressure, but it didnt freak her out, and I gave her time to think about it. She would eventually get bored and set forward, and I would release the pressure and praise her. Then start again. It took a few days, but she was following me by the end of day 4.
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post #7 of 17 Old 09-05-2011, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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Alright, see the back flip scared me so bad last time..lol I didn't want him hurting himself
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post #8 of 17 Old 09-05-2011, 12:47 PM
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He flipped because he panicked. If he starts to move backwards, keep contact with him but let him back up a little. He'll feel less trapped that way and it shouldn't progress to a backflip. Good luck with your little guy. Are there pics of him on this forum somewhere?
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post #9 of 17 Old 09-05-2011, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, and sadly no. I do this from my phone and I don't think I can upload pics from the mobile version..but I will see if I can :)
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post #10 of 17 Old 09-06-2011, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Just as an update, I have gotten him halter broke :) started yesterday evening and he was leading decent this morning...and I went outand caught him in the back pasture (he got out) and lead him all the way back :) yay!
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