Can you teach a ten year old horse to tie? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 12-08-2009, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
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Can you teach a ten year old horse to tie?

I was looking at horses on craigslist (I can't seem to help myself, even though I don't have a place for a horse yet ), and ran across a gorgeous gelding.

The ad claimed his only bad habit is he won't tie. The horse is ten years old. Is that too old to fix the problem? How would you go about doing that?

Or is this a depends on the horse (and what freaked him out about tying) sort of problem?
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post #2 of 23 Old 12-08-2009, 09:17 PM
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It's more of a "depends on the person" kind of a thing. If you are an experienced horseman then you can probably get it done. It may not be easy and it may not be pretty so if your one of the people that can't stand to see a horse struggle or get bothered by something then you may want to steer clear of him. It wouldn't bother me any but you need to decide if you are up to it. Be honest because you won't be doing yourself or the horse any favors if youare overestimating your abilities.

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post #3 of 23 Old 12-08-2009, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Kevin.

He's probably one I should pass on, plus he'll likely be gone anyway before I can really do some serious horse shopping. I was curious about what the process would be, though I guess I should have figured it wouldn't be an easy fix or the owner would have taken care of the problem already.
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post #4 of 23 Old 12-08-2009, 09:51 PM
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I would use a Blocker tie ring and see if that worked. If not I might have to pull something out of the "old-time cowboy methods bag" and get a little rough.

There's nothing like the Rockies in the springtime... Nothing like the freedom in the air... And there ain't nothing better than draggin calves to the fire and there's nothing like the smell of burning hair. -Brenn Hill
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post #5 of 23 Old 12-09-2009, 10:24 AM
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Horses end up with this problem for a bunch of reasons and the fix is not always an easy one.
It really depends on how bad they took the first training that they got.

There was an old (stupid)method that took a horse that was pulling back and the handler would tie a rope around the girth of the horse (just like a saddle cinch),the the rope would come up under the chest,around the nose and them tie to a hard wall.
The horse was left to fight it out.
The rope does not really release and the horse would in many cases completely panic.
The idea behind it was that the horse "Would just get it out of his system".
And "This will teach him a lesson".

I had one of these horses and he bore the scare on his chest from being torn open as he flipped himself over and over.
He was given to me by the person that did it and I was told that he would never tie.
This was done to him when he was 4 months old.


Something like this could take years to get the horse over it.
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post #6 of 23 Old 12-09-2009, 10:47 AM
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4 months old! I just can't believe it.

I think tie and let struggle works for some horses, but absolutely doesn't work for others who just keep fighting till they kill themself.
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post #7 of 23 Old 12-09-2009, 11:12 AM
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I know we always start youngsters with momma tied and we hold the rope as if they are tied. Most of their beginning training without momma is still done in groups of with older horses sstanking calmly. I've never had one truly freak. Why in the world would someone do that to a 4 month old??? We don't start tying until at least 6 months to a little under a year. All depending on when the colt seems calm enough to do it.

What would you do in the case of a ten year old like this Kevin? I'm not sure of how it could actually be fixed...I know what I would try, but since I've never had the experience I have no idea how that would work...lol.
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post #8 of 23 Old 12-09-2009, 11:19 AM
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I'm actually VERY curious...kevinshorses...enlighten me?

My 2 1/2 year old Clyde/TB filly has a small tying issue. Once every, say, 6 months she gets it in her head she's stronger than the fencepost she's tied to. She's only ever gotten free once and was immediately re-tied and stood nicely. It's as if she does it just to check that she *could*. Between these occurances, she never tests it, always stands with slack in the line.

How would you handle this? We had a very nice "patience post"...an old THICK tree that fell down but the trunk still stands about 10 feet tall. I've used that for years but on Eve's first freakout, she moved it so I no longer use it...since then I've had bailing twine around a fencepost...held her once, broke once. She's only really tried pulling 3 times. What do you think?

Sorry to hi-jack your topic...but it's still on the tying scenario so I think it applies. Just giving an example.

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post #9 of 23 Old 12-09-2009, 11:22 AM
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I'm not Kevin but I would tie the horse properly and let him work it out.
My first preference, one that no horse can break or hurt themselves is a high line.
I have a 3/4 inch rope that can have a loop knotted in the middle and then tie between 2 strong but flexable tree limbs. The rope strung tightly about 8 feet off the ground and tied fast at each end to a good tree branch or young tree offers flex and no chance to the horse to become entangled.
I ONLY use KNECK ropes for the tie with the lead passing through a halter. A good big soft kneck rope tied to the centre loop about an arms length long and let the horse go for it. He can throw himself, sit back or anything else and he can not do damage.

Next is a truck inner tube looped around a stought tree branch or tree and the neck rope tied to that weither height and arms length but the horse could hit the tree so it is my second choice.

3rd is a good ring anchored to the side of the barn to a good post with proper lags and tie to that, wither height and arms length.

Every time you tie the horse, make it with a neck rope and something solid. This is forever or until the horse over a long times shows he will not fight.
On the side of a trailer I have unbreakable loops welded to the frame and again the horse gets a neck rope. I have seen a bad horse slide the corner of the trailer but it stayed tied .

Never set them up to win.

YOu want to be really safe, teach the horse to hobble, I teach front and back and it takes 5 minutes a day for 3 days and if the horse has a brain it will hobble without a fuss

Neck ropes are not popular on this forum but where I live, in amish country every horse is tied by them. I can see a 100 horses tied sunday morning outside a church and every single one wears a neck rope.

Last edited by RiosDad; 12-09-2009 at 11:26 AM.
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post #10 of 23 Old 12-09-2009, 11:38 AM
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What you are saying makes sense. I never thought about how a high line could be really useful there. I would have started with hobbles because I wouldn't have thought of the line. I'll definitely keep that in mind if I ever get in a situation in the future.

We hobble when we have a horse that paws or just generally acts up when tied. It's never fun if you are at a show, and the horse at the trailer is rearing and acting a fool while you're riding another.

Thanks for giving some advice. :)
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