Breaking 2 Y/0 - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 05:42 AM Thread Starter
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Breaking 2 Y/0

What are opinions on breaking a 2 year old colt/filly?

To me, they seem to young and young of mind, i suppose horse mature at different rates, but for an animal that's going to live till it's 20/30+ why not wait a couple more years till they are fully mature?

Or is that the point, to get them while they are young and dis advantage to the big wide world??

I hope not to cause a big fight or a storm, just my thoughts :)

My friend recently bought a very nervous 2 y/o welsh section c and "broke it", when i met him he was hyper and bolted all over his paddock.. i didnt see it coming i guess haha
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post #2 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 07:42 AM
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I too think is too young.

If you do it properly, you don't need to do it "before the horse is too strong".

I'm starting my young stallion right now. And he is 4 years old. I take my time, so I think he will really be strated when he is 5 years old.

Faites de lui un compagnon, pas un esclave.
Nuno Oliveira.
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post #3 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 08:56 AM
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For me, most horses are fine to begin when they are two. As long as they are healthy and are decently developed, they will be fine. I think that the process should be done slower than an older horse to let the horse develope the proper muscles. They are still growing until they are five so keep the training easy and not vigorous.
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post #4 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 09:27 AM
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Much too young, bones are not developed enough and horses need to be babies, plenty of time for them to grow up before being backed.
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post #5 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 09:31 AM
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IMO 2 is way too young... I have a 2 yr old right now. And all I've done with him is groundwork... little bit of round pen work but nothing heavy and not for long. Early next year I plan on getting him x-rayed to make sure growth plates are closed and if they are then we'll carry on with more ground work/round pen work, carrying the saddle, ground driving.... etc..

CHIEF - 7 YR OLD MFT ~ SCOUT - 4 YR OLD
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post #6 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 09:31 AM
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I started both of my horses as 2 year olds. Did maybe 30 rides total throughout the year, 15-30 minutes each.
I think it's okay, so long as you go slow and keep it to a minimal.

Be wary of the horse with a sense of humour. - Pam Brown
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post #7 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 10:16 AM
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It depends on the horse, but there are other things to consider other than the physical. Two year old horses are mentally and emotionally immature. They are, however, sponges for learning so I like to take advantage of that by doing mild groundwork, hand walking obstacles, ponying alongside another horse, saddling, etc. This establishes the human as the leader and puts some foundation learning skills on a young colt. Keep the lessons short and interesting to develop a horses willingness to learn and you'll be ahead of the game when he/she is physically fit to be backed. It drives me crazy that so many horse sports demand that horses be aggressively trained before the age of 2 in order to compete.
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post #8 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by animalartcreations View Post
It depends on the horse, but there are other things to consider other than the physical. Two year old horses are mentally and emotionally immature. They are, however, sponges for learning so I like to take advantage of that by doing mild groundwork, hand walking obstacles, ponying alongside another horse, saddling, etc. This establishes the human as the leader and puts some foundation learning skills on a young colt. Keep the lessons short and interesting to develop a horses willingness to learn and you'll be ahead of the game when he/she is physically fit to be backed. It drives me crazy that so many horse sports demand that horses be aggressively trained before the age of 2 in order to compete.
I have no problem with ground work at 2, but feel it is totally unnecessary to actually climb on top of an immature animal whose bnes and frame are still changing and growing. 3 would be my very earliest age for backing and even then only done so lightly in the autumn and then turned away for the winter to grow more. For some slow developing horses even 3 is too early.
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post #9 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 10:40 AM
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I have a 12-month-old that will be extensively shown in-hand until she's 3 and from there I will decide if she's mature enough for riding (I am tiny, 110 pounds when wet). If not, she'll be a harness pony for a while, less strain on growing bones.

She already needs a job, she's very smart and gets into mischief otherwise.

BUT, I don't actually have a problem with lightly starting them as a long 2yo (as in older than 2 1/2), IF they're physically and mentally mature enough. Emphasis on LIGHTLY. No heavy riders, no unbalanced riders, and only walk/trot.

A CLEAN SLATE FOR THE FUTURE
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post #10 of 11 Old 12-19-2011, 10:43 AM
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I started my mare as a year 2 old although she was halfway to 3...I don't think there is anything wrong starting their training at 2 (if they are going to be really tall, I would wait as likely they are behind on growing), but I think anything heavy should wait until 3 or older. I kept the work really light with my mare and we spent the majority of our time doing leg aides, giving to the bit, just basic stuff, we kept sessions to no more than half an hour (when we first started out only 15 mnutes) but I definitely think if you pay attention you can see what the horse can handle mentally as well as physically...I have seen 2 year olds who completely shut off after 15 minutes and they just kind of have a melt down, and ones who thrive on learning and it doesn't stress them so mentally you can push them a bit.

Physically though even at 3, I wouldn't take my mare into the mountains for a trail ride unless we were taking plenty of breaks. I think there is a reason they set competitive trail at 4 years old -because that is when the majority of the horses are developed enough to really work.

Last edited by kstinson; 12-19-2011 at 10:46 AM.
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