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Clumsy Or Cheeky?

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  • Horse seems overly clumsy when crossing obstacle

 
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    07-05-2010, 05:49 AM
  #11
Weanling
Haha fair enough, hope the vid works and you don't end up with sore feet
     
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    07-05-2010, 05:50 AM
  #12
Weanling
Oh that's interesting, I might try and desensitise him because we're trying to get him into training now and teach him some more manners. He's pretty good once you've nudged him once but we're going to start lunging him so obviously we need to get him used to a whip haha
     
    07-05-2010, 06:03 AM
  #13
Foal
Thankyou. Hope you can desensitise your horse
     
    07-05-2010, 06:53 AM
  #14
Weanling
I wasn't able to watch the video as my internet connection is too slow at the moment but in general I like Clinton Anderson's stuff. Forgive me if this was what was in the video but thought I might share a groundwork exercise that has worked for me to teach 'personal space' which your horse seems to lack as she walks all over you. Stand next to your horse and hold one rein in your hand with your hand right next to the bit and your pinky finger closest to the bit, draw a small circle around you (about 1 metre/3 feet diameter), hold the arm holding the rein straight out from your side and urge your horse to go around the outside of your circle, if she takes even one step inside your circle make her back up several steps then do the same thing again. You can use a dressage whip to tap her on the butt (i usually give a voice cue/cluck first then a light tap then getting harder until they move), if she refuses to move backwards give the voice cluck then tap her legs with the whip until she moves (it's probably useful to teach her to back up before doing any other groundwork exercises if she doesn't already know it).

I really think it is about her respecting your space, I've been stepped on a few times and every time if it is due to my horse not respecting my space (as opposed to getting a fright or something) I back her up for about 10-20 steps until she submits to me by lowering her head.
     
    07-05-2010, 07:10 AM
  #15
Weanling
Ok, this is how it was said to me: a horse knows exactly where his feet are at all times. Take crossing and obstacle for example... A small creek. That horse will walk right up to the very edge of where the water meets the mud, but will not step forward. Another example: trailer loading and unloading. Getting in, the knowledgable trailered horse knows where to put his feet in order to clear his knees from getting whacked. At the same time, even a horse that's never backed out of a trailer will shimmy and quiver on the way out.

That being said, your horses are showing you both a lack of respect for your space, and dominance by pushing himself/herself into the place your feet are occupying. Try stepping on your horse's feet. Kick the hoof with the toe of your boot and see what happens. Step on it like you missed a step on the stairs. The horse will move its foot (or push you back depending on the severity of the problem) because the horse knows you are on it. When leading, a few bumps on the nose with the halter should get your horse moving away from you.

I ask that my horses ears be at my shoulders, but a bent elbows distance away. If I make my arm into a "chicken wing" I won't be able to touch my horse. This allows me to be at a 45 degree angle of his shoulder, eliminating stepped on toes and getting pushed or leaned on. As soon as the horse crosses my boundary without my instruction (and I don't mean without 'allowance'... I mean giving the horse a specific cue to follow that asks that he be closer) I immediately face him, square shoulders, head up, ears back, and put both of my hands up, level with my face, and make a pushing motion in his direction and take a step toward him. If he still does not move, a good yank on the lead at the same time can help, or a quick, noisy slap on the chest should do the trick.

If your horse doesn't respond to the above request and action, its time you went back to square one and establish some ground manners. I refuse to climb on a horse that is disrespectful on the ground, because the attitude transfers to the saddle, and I will not ask more of a horse if he cannot even give me the time of day it takes to focus on NOT stepping on my toes, until he learns that is a respect he must give me.

You will never see a horse lower in the herd bumping anything with the lead horse. The lead horse will ward that lower guy off, long before he gets the chance to hurt the leader.

If I can help you more, please let me know! I just hate hearing all these replies that its ok your horse does something that could potentially send you to the emergency room, or even prevent you from ever riding (or walking correctly)... Like breaking the small, fragile bones in the top of your foot 'by accident' when it can absolutely be prevented.
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    07-07-2010, 10:30 AM
  #16
Foal
Both Boxer And Westonsma you have helped a great deal. I shall start working on this straight away :) ... I Didnt think this stepping on my foot was such a big thing but now I have read your comments it comes clear to me that if the horse doesnt respect my space then she obviously doesnt respect me. Thankyou so much for your help I will get back to you both and let you know how it goes!
     
    07-07-2010, 02:59 PM
  #17
Foal
Try a stud chain(that was the first thing that came in my head lol)
Or hold your lead rope a little tighter like 6 inches away from her/his halter.
If he tries to get in front of you, make him stop. (if he got in front of you than make a circle and start walking again.) Have him wait on you, and not make you rush. Make him go where you want to go, not where he wants to go.
     
    07-07-2010, 05:22 PM
  #18
Yearling
Hmmm...this is some good advice.

I always have a problem with Night Heat, everytime I lead her somewhere, she keeps on leaning toward me and I keep on having to push her away. As well as when I'm grooming her or especially tacking up, she usually tries moving in a circle.

I will definitely try this exercise. Thanks.
     

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