I'm soon going to start cattle penning on a horse that I am leasing and its his first time also. I was wondering if anyone has taught their horse to be good around cattle, cause Owen isnt very fond of them really, their are some in the barn he's at and he'll wlak up to them but trotting/cantering around the corner they're at. He wont do it. Anyone have any suggestions for when we start working with the cattle? Any helpful hints of how to get him to learn they're not going to eat him?
I work with cattle all the time and have taught many horses not to be scared. The best thing is to start out very slow. Have like five cows in a round pen or an arena and just follow them around. But make sure the cows don't get behind you. As long as the cows are in front of you your horse won't feel as threatened, although he will still probably be scared. It sounds as though your horse may already be somewhat used to cattle so if he isn't scared of following the cows walk at the bunch of cows and try to walk through the herd, you may need some help if the cows are flighty. Try to single one cow out and trot after it. I don't know if you know the basics on where you should place your horse to move the cow where you want to so if you want to know more just ask. Try turning the cow around and taking it back to the herd. Also you will need to increase the size of the herd. For penning there will be thirty cows. The thing that you will really need to spend some time on is going into the herd to peel out the cow you want. It will just take a lot of practice of troting at the herd and singling out the one you want. He will soon realize that the cows will move out of his way and he won't be scared any more. Also with team penning always remember to use the rail to your advantage. For example, if you wanted to pull a cow out of the very middle and take it up the center of the arena you would need a horse on each side, but if you use the rail it is just like having another horse there except for your other team members can be looking for the next cow instead of helping you. Good luck and I think you'll find that he will progress very quickly because he has already been around cows. Have fun and let me know if you have any other questions about anything. I do team penning, ranch rodeos, sorting (feed lot and regular), roping, and I know all of the rules because I am a judge. So just ask I am more then willing to answer!
Wow, thanks for all the advice. I'll let you knwo how he does. Someone at the barn I know has a horse that pens, so it will be easier if Owen see's that horse around them with no fear, so he should be better still
It could also be helpful to go to some sorting or penning events and just stand next to the fences so you aren't actually in with the cows but the cows will run by your horse and you just make him stand there.
Why not putting him in a paddock with the cows? I don't do anything with cows we have some. My horse was scared, when she saw a cow she'd run the other way with or without me on her back. But once she was put in the paddock with them she doesnt care the slightest
Hey I think he's getting better now. Cause yesterday, the owner had the cows in the indoor arena cause he was lceaning their stalls, so I walked Owen around them asnd he didnt care. We even chased them and he was curious. Im waiting until I have to ride him around them, that should be fun