Feel like a bit of a failure... - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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Feel like a bit of a failure...

I have had my new boy for nearly a year now and I still haven't really got his biting habit in order. He does not do it very often at home but as soon as you lead him out the front gates he is a right royal bugger. I have tried everything that I know of in the past year. He is a very mouthy horse he often carries things around in his mouth like a ball, flag, shoes etc. he even runs after my other horse with the ball hanging out of his mouth hitting my other horse with it. He is not fussed who it is my sister, husband, dogs, my old horse (even though my old horse is boss) rugs, fly masks you name it he bites it

I am getting a trainer out tomorrow to observe and help with some ideas on how to tackle the problem. Horses are not new to me (30 years around them) so not fixing this problem myself is kinda embarrassing and I feel a bit of a failure for my new boy. Anyone ever felt like this.

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post #2 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
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Oh and his teeth have been done recently by a dental vet and they are perfect.

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post #3 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 02:48 AM
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Someone I know had a mouthy/bitey gelding. After many attempts to straighten him out with no success...

One day she had him in the cross ties and as she was walking towards her, he gave her a hard chomp. So she grabbed him by his halter and bit him on the nose, hard. He threw a tantrum, but he never bit anyone again...
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post #4 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 02:50 AM
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How are you currently disciplining this behaviour? Biting is dangerous, I've seen horrible scars resulting from it and a bite in the wrong place could be deadly, so it should be taken very seriously.

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post #5 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 03:26 AM
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I might find a way to cause his nose to run into my elbow and then pretend it was an accident when it does. That could be a way to do it if you don't think you have the fire in your eyes enough to correct him in the more traditional and oft-advised 'kick his ass' kind of way.
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post #6 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 03:42 AM Thread Starter
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Tried the elbow in the nose, blunt nail in hand, moving his feet, rubbing his face lots etc. It has improved cosiderably but is still there. I know it is very dangerous and I don't tolerated it the old owner used to hit him a grass rake obviously that made him worse. Elbowing him does make him worse it turnes into a competition then. The horse trainer is confident he can help tomorrow with a plan of attack.
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post #7 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 02:47 PM
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I think the trainer is a good idea. You're not a failure. Just wanted you to know! It sounds like, from what I read, this is a habit you didn't create so maybe one that been around for a while. Sometimes we need fresh new ideas. Good luck tomorrow!
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post #8 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 03:24 PM
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Sometimes we fight the notion that our horses are like our big dogs, but really, they kinda are. I can see that you are fighting the idea of punching him in the mouth. I think the trainer will really help you. Meantime, try the mildest smack and the word, "No!", emphatically and loud. I had this problem with my otherwise very friendly QH gelding. I starting by flicking my middle finger, snapping it out at his mouth. That wasn't enough. I had to hit him harder than that, even tapping his mouth with the end of my shovel while I cleaned the stall. Be consistant. If he's to the point where you have to hit him in the mouth with the end of the broom, realize that he's MUCH bigger than you and that could be a chunk of YOU in his mouth. He will survive the hit and think twice before he puts his teeth next to you again.

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post #9 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 08:02 PM
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By closely observing anyhorse as I lead him I'll flap an elbow, just to let him know my elbow might connect with his jaw. It's random so he never knows when it might happen. Even horses that don't bite but are inclined to crowd a little will pay mind. Your elbow can deliver a sharp blow so use it and don't be gentle. it won't make him headshy but he will certainly be more respectful.
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post #10 of 34 Old 10-26-2012, 08:38 PM
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i think the OP has already tried the hitting in the mouth, dull nail in the fist and other methods mentioned. It sounds like she is not afraid to be firm.
So, it will be interesting to hear what the trainer says regarding this.
I have never really dealt with a committed biter, so I hope to learn something here.
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