controversial stallion training methods - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 04:12 PM Thread Starter
Green Broke
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controversial stallion training methods

I'm just curious what you all think of methods used by a local trainer to work with her 3 year old stallion. She posted a session on Facebook and a lot of people criticized her. She defends her methods, saying they are tried and true. Essentially, she brought him in an indoor arena with two geldings and a mare. There was a rider on the stallion, but she was instructed to let him do whatever he wanted unless he was going to hurt someone. There were handlers for each of the other horses carrying whips and their job was to "protect" the other horses by sending the stallion away if he approached. The idea, as it was explained, was to recreate a herd environment where a young stallion would be put in his place by other horses. Eventually, the stallion would stop harassing the other horses and behave.

Photos posted included several rears (almost going over backwards), some bucks (rider went flying onto the horse's neck, then on the ground), and various other kinds of rambunctiousness. The rider of the stallion fell off, but did not get hurt. I'll bet she had bruises though!

I don't know how to feel about this, and was curious what more experienced folks thought. I'm not knowledgeable enough to take sides here, but two things occurred to me: 1 - I hope this stallion will not be going to any shows where my 12 year old daughter might be riding because I don't know that she could fight him off (I'm guessing there are rules about having stallions at shows?), and 2 - I fear posting pictures like this might encourage others to imitate her, especially some of the young, impressionable riders she teaches at her stable. She did put up a disclaimer, saying these methods should only be used by a professional horse trainer. But then, she does seem to be getting a kick out of showing these dangerous moves on her Facebook page (she actually said one picture of the stallion rider getting unseated made her "laugh").

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post #2 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 05:04 PM
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That trainer sounds like an abusive idiot. Socializing and training for good manners should always start as a weanling and be continuous throughout the life of a stallion. Socializing to other horses, gelding and mares should also be done from a young age. A herd environment goes a long way in teaching a young colt their place. As he becomes sexually mature then of course mares are removed from the herd.

3 years old is about 2.5 years too late to use the harsh methods you described. I'm getting the feeling (could be wrong) that this particular stallion has been stalled and segregated for a while.

If he can't be safely and slowly introduced to geldings in a herd environment, he should be gelded asap. The trainer's actions are irresponsible and dangerous.
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post #3 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 05:12 PM
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Yeah, not how I want my stallion handled at ALL!

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post #4 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 05:26 PM
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What an absolute idiot!
You train a stallion, get him going well under saddle, and then you ride him around other hroses, letting him know, that when he is ridden or handled, he is just another hrose, and can't act studdy. She also has her entire herd observations in la la land
What happens in the wild, stallions fight other stallions , over a harem of mares
Mares, when not in heat, let a stallion know.
Young stallions, when they reach sexual maturity, are driven out of the herd, form bachelor groups, until they get mares of their own
This all as zero to do with riding/training a stallion
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post #5 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
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Well, I really don't know the first thing about handling a stallion (nor do I feel the need to find out), but that was my gut instinct. I also happen to know that this person has behaved irresponsibly with her other horses and her various other animals, at least in my opinion, so I thought that might be influencing my opinion of her. But allowing a stallion to act out did not seem to me like a good method to teach him manners.
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post #6 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 05:30 PM Thread Starter
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Not to mention the fact that each of the people involved in this "training session" were in danger! I can't imagine how someone with a whip is going to stop a large stallion from going after a mare. I found the whole thing frightening, frankly, and am glad my daughter doesn't ride at that barn. We did try lessons there, and she pushed my daughter so hard, she was in tears, and genuinely scared. So we never went back to her. This trainer seems to like the adrenaline rush.

Thanks for your opinions. Like I said, I don't know much about it, but it didn't look right to me.
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post #7 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 06:31 PM
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I want to be the rider on that stallion!

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post #8 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
I want to be the rider on that stallion!

She had to have nerves of steel! And a lot of bruises afterwards...
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post #9 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 06:50 PM
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What Hombre and Smilie said, in spades!!

I had one stallion that was born on my place, socialized from the very beginning, and an absolute gentleman at all times when being handled. His 'next door neighbor' was an older gelding that didn't put up with any studdiness from an upstart youngster.

Around the same time, I was given a young stallion about 4-5 months younger than the one I raised. He had had NO proper handling or socialization as a youngster. Since he was smallish - about 14h at the time - I turned him out with several of my larger geldings who taught him his place. I didn't keep him long enough to get better ground manners on him. He pissed me off one too many times, so I gelded him and put him up for sale.

Courage is taking just one more step...
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post #10 of 67 Old 04-17-2017, 08:48 PM
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It is one thing to turn a young arrogant stud out with a bunch of old in foal broodmares, to teach him some herd manners, and to think that has anything to do with training the stud under saddle.
Where does she get someone stupid enough to ride a stallion, letting him act as if he was loose in a pasture?
Yes, she must have extra insurance, which covers going for a spot on the Darwin Award top list!
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