Buddy sour issues
   

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Buddy sour issues

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    04-06-2013, 01:09 AM
  #1
Weanling
Buddy sour issues

My daughter has a new friend who just got a horse and the girls sometimes get together with their horses. Daughters horse is great - not the least bit barn or buddy sour. Likes other horses fine but prefers people. The new friends horse on the other hand is very buddy sour. The rider has taken lessons for 2 years but is still quite green. Her gelding, if separated from our horse, will run right through the bit and just take off, regardless of who is on him, to get to our mare. He is a big strong horse and as I said, he has no regard for the bridle if he is on a mission.

They family has consulted 2 trainers and the trainers have very different approaches. When they consulted the first trainer the horse was recovering from an injury it got when he had his first bolt (this one had nothing to do with being buddy or barn sour. He just took off in the pasture, dumped the girl and slipped and fell in the process) and was much too lame to ride. Obviously they were limited in what they could do. They did tack the horse up to see how the tack fit. The trainer saw that the gelding did not seem to be comfortable in his bit (d-ring snaffle that was too small) so she suggested a better fitting bit - but nothing stronger (she feels that a stronger bit will not cure the underlying issue). The trainer had the girl work on some other issues she was having like putting the bridle on, picking his hooves, things like that. This trainers approach is to find out what is triggering the bolt and start there AND train the girl how to deal with it if and when it happens again. She typically gets to know the horse a little bit to determine the best, most effective approach (some horses are stubborn and some are sensitive). Trainer 1 believes ultimate goal is to create a partnership with a willing horse that responds to light aids. She is also big into a solid foundation/basics.

Trainer 2 said to get rid of any snaffle and put a stronger bit on him. This trainer is much more heavy handed. The minute the horse gets in her space she will give him a serious bump. Doesn't matter if the horse gets rattled and knows that the horse will figure it out on it's own. She follows the Parelli groundwork training. By the time trainer 2 came to help the horse was only slightly lame so the girl tacked up and walked around a little bit. I'm not sure how it went as I was not there but the owners seemed happy with the mini-lesson. Unfortunately, the horse bolted today even with the stronger bit.

Trainer 1 suggested that they get an arena to work in, trainer 2 suggested a round pen.

The family has decided to have one lesson from each of them now that the horse is rideable again and decide who to go with from here on out. I'm almost wondering if this just isn't the right horse for a green young rider.

Anyone with experience in this and have advice?
     
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    04-06-2013, 02:07 AM
  #2
Weanling
I just saw how to fix this on a Clinton Anderson training video. He took the two horses that were buddy sour and had them chase each others tails, is what he called it. He had one rider make his horse chase the other horse it's rider and made sure the horse had its nose pretty close to the others rear in fast circles. Then take the horses to opposite ends of the arena and let them rest and just sit there for a couple minutes and the get at it again until they got tired again and then repeat. You want to make the horse realize that whenever he's around his buddy that it means work, this will make him not want to be around the other horse. Hope this helped :).
     
    04-06-2013, 02:18 AM
  #3
Green Broke
Personally I'd suggest running far, far, far away from any trainer that tries to solve a problem by using a stronger bit. It may work (or may not as you saw) but it's not a permanent solution and all that's going to happen is that the horse will become accustomed to the harsher bit, run through it and now you've got to get harsher and harsher and harsher until what? A bit made of razor blades? I'm not saying a snaffle is the be all end all of bits but a training issue is not a reason to go to a harsher bit.
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    04-06-2013, 04:07 AM
  #4
Trained
I'd start at the start & consider why horses often don't want to go out alone with a human & why they feel safer, or at least more comfortable, in company of other horses. You'll see that 'the bigger bit' approach won't help that at all. And 'make him work' won't do anything for it either. They're only likely to lead to a worse attitude about 'working' for people. I'd work on changing that first.
     
    04-06-2013, 07:50 AM
  #5
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Horse racer    
I just saw how to fix this on a Clinton Anderson training video. He took the two horses that were buddy sour and had them chase each others tails, is what he called it. He had one rider make his horse chase the other horse it's rider and made sure the horse had its nose pretty close to the others rear in fast circles. Then take the horses to opposite ends of the arena and let them rest and just sit there for a couple minutes and the get at it again until they got tired again and then repeat. You want to make the horse realize that whenever he's around his buddy that it means work, this will make him not want to be around the other horse. Hope this helped :).
You have got to be kidding me.

And are you seriously suggesting that these kids try that?

And I have my doubts that this will solve anything, except to see how each person's health insurance works.

I thought CA was stupid, this just reinforces it.
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    04-06-2013, 07:53 AM
  #6
Green Broke
First, I would not be letting my child ride with this kid. Too dangerous.

And yes, I would go to stronger bit AFTER kid learns to ride. Many a horse will manage to not bolt once it knows rider has more control over it. And never test person again either.

As for two trainers? That is neither fair to horse or kid or trainers. Will end up with more spoiled horse than have now.

Of the 2? I'd go with number 2. Has more sense in how to handle horses I would say.

And until the people who own this horse learn about horses, no amount of training is going to help.

But they need to choose option A or B, not try to do both.
     
    04-06-2013, 07:54 AM
  #7
Super Moderator
Neither trainer knows how to re-train a spoiled horse. One that has learned to bolt and has become a 'runaway' and a horse that is 'herd-bound' to the point that it is not ridable IS a spoiled horse. The horse has learned 'bad behaviors' and will continue them until re-trained to NOT bolt whenever he decides he would rather be somewhere else. Horses have to have very specific training to 'give up' bad behavior.

Trainer 1 would be great for a green horse that was not spoiled, but will never teach a spoiled one to give up a bad behavior by training it like a green horse that has not already learned bad behaviors.

This rider absolutely needs an enclosed,'safe' place to ride - an arena would be better than a round pen because spoiled horses often ride OK in a small pen but go right back to the bad behavior in a bigger one.

The way we deal with herd-bound horses is to tie them up in a safe place and take their buddy away. They will finally figure out that there is life after separation. After several sessions where they are tied apart until they completely settle down, they begin listening and learning. A 'reactive' horse and one in a 'panic' will not learn anything. They have to settle down first.

The most effective way I have found to re-train horses that bolt is to teach them a very good 'one rein stop' at all three gaits. It interrupts the behavior, but only when taught before one needs it. When a horse has been taught that you can 'take its head away from it' any time you want to, it is just like installing an 'off switch'. Doing this and riding one that is wanting to bolt may require a lot more skill than this young, inexperienced rider has.

This is NOT a safe situation and any parent that puts a child on a horse that is known to bolt is really putting their child in grave danger. This horse can bolt out into traffic, run through a fence or fall down and kill her. There are way too many terrible ways that this can end. They REALLY need to sell this horse and get a safe one or have a knowledgeable person completely retrain it. This is not a good home-do-it-yourself-project.
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    04-06-2013, 01:49 PM
  #8
Weanling
No I'm not suggesting kids try this! Do you think I'm stupid? A kid shouldn't even be on a horse like this in the first place.
     
    04-06-2013, 10:37 PM
  #9
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Horse racer    
No I'm not suggesting kids try this! Do you think I'm stupid?
Um... replying to the OP with a 'how to fix' kinda gave me too the idea you are indeed suggesting it. If you're not 'stupid'(your word) that you'd do/suggest it, I don't get why you wrote it here?

Agree with Cherie, tho I'd be inclined to get them comfortable away from their mates differently. But this...

Quote:
This is NOT a safe situation and any parent that puts a child on a horse that is known to bolt is really putting their child in grave danger. This horse can bolt out into traffic, run through a fence or fall down and kill her. There are way too many terrible ways that this can end.
Needs to be emphasised... and re-emphasised! Horses are potentially dangerous enough without taking silly risks.... if you'd even call it a 'risk', when it's a known problem. I bet they wouldn't put their child in a car that they suspected had faulty brakes.
     
    04-07-2013, 01:54 AM
  #10
Weanling
Thanks for all of the replies! I think the family who bought the horse is realizing that they may be in over their head but they would like to keep the horse if possible. With that said, trainer 1 suggested that they trailer the horse out for some full time/consistent training. The girl is pretty much afraid to ride the horse but has been doing some ground work with him daily. I suspect that if the family is not up for horse for full time training they may sell him and get a horse that is a better fit. I agree that his is not a safe project for a family that is new to horses.
     

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