Can I train my saddlebred to pull or drive? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 12-29-2013, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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Red face Can I train my saddlebred to pull or drive?

Hello, at home I have saddlebred, gelding. He is 10 years old. He is broke to ride, and I ride him about four times a week. We mostly just trail ride. Is it possible for me to train him to pull something like a sled, or a tire, or a person on skis? I am absolutely clueless to where to start. Is there anyone that can give me some helpful advice to train my horse?
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post #2 of 9 Old 12-29-2013, 06:16 PM
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Any horse can be trained to pull. If the horse was started under saddle correctly than they should be familiar with ground driving. The big adjustment would be the harness and the weight of something. That said, the harness is an easier adjustment than the weight.

If you have never driven a horse I would look into driving lessons for you before you start your own horse. There is in my opinion, a great benefit to knowing the equipment and what is "appropriate" behavior when driving as opposed to just buying a harness and learning on your own. If you have/find the local driving society (a google search would bring it up) they should have a lessons section. It would be best to take lessons with your horse. Like anything else, green and green = black and blue.

No matter what you do, do not attach your horse to any object without the appropriate equipment. This means don't tie lines to the saddle and have it pull you on a sleigh or sled, like wise for attaching a long line to the halter.
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post #3 of 9 Old 12-29-2013, 09:01 PM
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Saddlebreds are big in the Fine Harness world.
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post #4 of 9 Old 12-29-2013, 09:38 PM
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Agree with the above, except about attaching long lines to the halter. Don't understand your prob with that Rookie?

Keep safety in mind at all times. Don't use long lines in such a way that the horse can get tangled or hung up in them. Ensure the horse 'ground drives' very well & reliably before anything else. Ensure he's desensitised to things touching, leaning on him & things 'following' him, as well as getting him used to dragging things in such a manner that is safe if he panics. Ie. I start out being the 'safety chain' between horse & object, just holding(via rope so I can be in whatever position & go with horse too) the harness tugs & attached object together, so that I can just let go if the horse panics.
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post #5 of 9 Old 12-30-2013, 07:14 AM
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It depends on what you are attaching to the long lines. I have seen people attach the long lines to the halter and to a sled or a heavier object. Which is not the way to teach a horse to pull something but can result in serious injury to both the horse and the person on the sled.
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post #6 of 9 Old 12-30-2013, 05:15 PM
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Oh!! Guess I shouldn't have ignored the silly reasons! 8-0
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post #7 of 9 Old 12-30-2013, 05:20 PM
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Did you get your Saddlebred from a Saddlebred or show barn? If so, it is a good chance your horse has at least been started with driving training. Long lines if nothing else.

I would suggest you get help from an experienced person to teach your horse to drive. In short, Yes, your horse can be taught to drive but you wouldn't want to have an accident so get some help from someone who know how to do this, safely. Have fun.
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post #8 of 9 Old 12-30-2013, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Oh!! Guess I shouldn't have ignored the silly reasons! 8-0

Hehehe, no because we don't think like that
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post #9 of 9 Old 12-30-2013, 07:04 PM
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I hope everyone on here is a bit more sensible but I was shocked when I saw that. It was one of those situations where you watch it and see yourself being interviewed by the local news when it goes horribly wrong.
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