Filly refuses to trot. HELP!!

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Filly refuses to trot. HELP!!

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    09-21-2010, 03:08 PM
Filly refuses to trot. HELP!!

I have been working on breaking and training my first horse. She is a two year old Thoroughbred. We went through the whole breaking process with flying colors. She would walk for me, turn, start, and stop on a dime. I started trotting her and after about the fourth session of trotting she started bucking and kicking, refusing to trot. I've been trying to push her through it for about two weeks now and she is getting to the point to where she will barely move forward anymore no matter how much I kick and push her. I am stumped and don't know what to do! HELP!
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    09-21-2010, 03:10 PM
Have you had her checked over for pain issues? Does the saddle fit?
    09-21-2010, 03:23 PM
Yeah I checked the saddle fit and checked her back and other spots for any areas with pain and came up with nothing.
    09-21-2010, 03:47 PM
Have you had a professional look at her? I don't know you, so maybe you are a professional, but I'm talking about having a chiropractor out, or a saddle fitter out specifically. Just throwing that out there, because I knew my saddle didn't fit my horse, and I've learned and been shown a lot about saddle fit, and I learned a whole bunch I didn't know, and couldn't see when I had my chiropractor check her out.
Just a couple of things to think about while you are up there, and when you think about what you've done the past few weeks, are you up off her back? When you trot are you leaning forward in a half seat position? Are your hands forward, or do you accidentally pull them back (even a little bit, not necessarily actually pulling on the mouth)? Everyone does things a bit differently, and every horse learns differently, but one of the things I've learned and been taught, is that initially you don't want to be sitting deep in the saddle, or be posting when getting the horse to trot, because it throws them off, and even when sitting deep in the saddle, you still bounce, and that has the same effect as posting.
Another thing I would try, cause it may well just be that she's decided to throw a tantrum as all children do at some point, have someone lunge her on the ground while you are on her back, and get her to trot, provided that she does lunge well.
    09-21-2010, 03:53 PM
To break this down; it's either a behavioral issue or a physical issue.

Physical Issue:

Outside of pain and saddle fit, there's a very real possibility that she's not physically mature enough to carry a rider's weight at two. Will she trot willingly on the lunge line under tack but riderless? Can you get someone to lunge you on her and see if her response is better? Have you tried getting out of the saddle in two point and seeing if she'll move forward then?

Behavioral issue:

As far as behavioral issues, since she's been sweet and agreeable up til now, let's assume she doesn't understand what you're asking. Start out by using voice commands, reinforcing by body language and the lunge whip, to ask her to trot on the lunge. Then do the same thing "in hand" or leading her. When you're absolutely sure that she knows that the voice command "T---rot!" means trot, ask from the saddle again, and be prepared to follow up with a stick if she doesn't go. Most likely, really reinforcing the voice command will help bring the communication. Once she does trot, praise extravagantly.
    09-21-2010, 04:31 PM
I'm sorry she's actually three, I didn't proof read my post! Haha. I go to school for equine healthcare and complementary therapies so I know some about detecting pain and what not, I am by no means a professional, but I am pretty confident it's a behavioral problem. We had four sessions of trotting successfully without any problem so I don't think she's confused about what I am asking her to do. Before I ever got on her back I trained her to listen to voice commands. The day she started acting up she would trot half a lap around the ring then she would turn her head to the inside, spin, and buck. They are not hard bucks like she is trying to hurt me but more like a "I don't wanna do this" tantrum. I have not tried to use a crop on her yet, I wasn't sure how she would react or if it would actually help or just hurt the process. Should I go back to the basics of lunging and not ride her for a little bit?
    09-21-2010, 04:38 PM
Based on your last post, I'd say that it's behavioral, and she's testing her boundaries, and it's now very important that you assert yourself and *insist* that she do it.

I'd start out by lunging her and reinforcing the voice command, and I would desensitize her to a stick on the ground before riding with it. Then I'd ask her for the trot under saddle, from a secure two point, and use the stick behind my leg after asking with normal strenth aid.
    09-21-2010, 05:01 PM
Ok I'll try that. Thanks so much!!
    09-21-2010, 05:03 PM
Make sure you are not confusing her when you ask her to move forward. So often, on the greenies, when they lurch forward we (general we) tend to pull back trying to regulate the amount of go involved. She just might be at a point where she is now confused by this.
    09-21-2010, 05:12 PM
Yeah I keep a loose rein.

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