Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Canberra, Australia
Catching a new young horse
Hi, I know that catching is often discussed on this site but I was hoping I could get some advice for this particular problem. Last weekend I just bought a 3 year old filly and floated her over to my place. She was okay to lead, not great, but alright, and she seemed okay to catch in a small yard. The owner said that she hadn't been handled in six months + but they had pulled her out of the paddock for the few days before I bought her.
Once at my place I put her in a half acre paddock with an attatched stable, there was a horse on either side of her but she was in on her own. The next day I went out to catch her would not let me near her. If I got within 5 metres she would gallop around in circles. I tried I bit of bribing, with food in a bucket, hay and carrots but she was not even slightly interested in any. My housemate had a look at her and told me about this system where you walk after the horse until they stop moving, and as soon as they stop moving and look at you, then you take a step back, in a direction that pushes out their hindquarters. When they look away you walk towards, and everytime they look at you, then you step back. If they walk to you, then you keeping stepping back.
She's gotten to the point where I can get one and a half metres away from her, and occasionally she'll walk up to me and smell me from as far as she can get then walk away.
I'm not really sure where to go from here. I don't want to grab her because it may freak her out, but its taking a long time, and I don't want to have a horse I can't catch as I need to brush her, get her feet trimmed etc.
If I catch her there isn't really a smaller place I can lock her up in so I want to be able to catch her in her paddock.
Does anyone have any ideas on what I could do?