Food Aggressive - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 17 Old 09-06-2012, 01:32 PM
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Yes, not enough facts to give a full answer-is your son 2-10-15? Has he ever teased the horse? You were"preparing" the food-grain?-hay? supplements? Is the horse in a stall you have to enter? A pen, where you just throw it in?Is he the only horse around? Is the horse getting a lot of grain? And, if so-how much exercise? Has the horse ever been in a food-deprived situation?
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post #12 of 17 Old 09-06-2012, 01:43 PM
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My 9 yr old OTTB gelding is good aggressive until he gets it. If he sees me with a bucket he will rear, buck, and kick until he gets his food. I have had a few close calls where he almost got me. I have found if I have control over him or he is tied up prior to getting his feed(and by feed I mean alfalfa pellets and wheat bran only), he does much better. He also isn't as bad if another horse is around. He doesn't like anyone around hs bucket.
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post #13 of 17 Old 09-06-2012, 02:55 PM
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When I find a horse is aggressive at feed time it gets its fed given to it in double quick time.
The thing is to be fast when he comes at you and wrap the feed, still in the bucket straight across his nose! I then go into attack mode and will keep whacking him with the bucket across his chest so he is running backwards for several circuits around the stable.
When he is sitting in his manger biting his toenails I will walk out. If he wants his feed he can pick it up off the floor.
Next feed time you can bet your bottom dollar that he will stand back when you enter with the feed.
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post #14 of 17 Old 09-06-2012, 03:40 PM
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the couple horses I have had that were food aggressive (not so much aggressive, more pushy, snatching hay and the like- the mule would threaten a kick), I would go into the stall or pen equipped with a lung whip. They want to be pushy, they got a good wack (the kick threatener got as many wacks as I could get in in 2 seconds) and I made them leave the stall or go to the other side of the pen away from the food. I made sure that they knew that being pushy, snatching hay, and threatening kicks just made that meal more delayed, and that I was boss and I decided when they could eat. Never took more than three times, and my horses aren't scared of the lunge whip because I also make a point to pet them with it...but they are aware that it can bite.

As for your son, I think it depends on his age and horse aptitude (Ive seen five years olds who have alot of horse sense- but they are far and few inbween). Unless he can go in there and give it to em effectively without coming off as a bully, or backing down, I would keep him out of there at feed time.
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post #15 of 17 Old 09-06-2012, 03:57 PM
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All mine know this, but when I get a new horse I carry a whip when feeding.
Mine aren't fed in stalls so I have enough room to work.

I carry the feed, and if they get in my space, they get sent away. I make them stay away from me and the feed until I walk away.

So first they gotta stay out of my space. And then for me to leave they need to be standing patiently. Then I'll walk away.

I usually don't bother them after that but if I was messing around one and it tried to kick that whip would be on their butt and they'd be working.. Till they stand and let me mess with them.
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post #16 of 17 Old 09-06-2012, 06:06 PM
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The operatives are "recently become aggressive" and "I have been a bit wishy washy with him".

He is becoming aggressive because you are letting him get away with it. He must be a very patient and kind horse for this to have taken six months to rear its ugly head.
You will have to take deep breath, assume the position of the Alpha Dominant Mare and give him three seconds of "I am going to Kill you" whenever he starts getting ugly about the feed pan.

It's got to be stopped "five minutes ago" as one thing leads to another, whether it's good or bad behavior. If he truly did try to kick your son, he is ultimately not going to be safe for anyone to be around, so this needs nipped right now
This is exactly right. Fix it yesterday!

I do not believe in 'teasing' horses with their grain.
I do not believe in trying to 'aggravate' them.
I just believe in absolute respect and all of the other things fall right into line.
I do believe that you should be the 'toughest lead horse in the herd that ever kicked another horse's butt for trying to grab their grain.
This is 'Natural Horsemanship' as horses dish it out to each other.

Remember -- Whatever you allow is what you are training him to do.

Remember -- The poorest behavior you allow is the very best behavior you have any right to expect.

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post #17 of 17 Old 09-07-2012, 09:35 PM
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I personally would not let my children anywhere near any horse during feeding time. Horses are unpredictable animals and when you feel you can totally trust them that is when accidents happen. My parents always taught me to never go near a dog when it is eating and I think the same applies to horses. I don't like anyone near my food or touching me while I'm eating or picking from my plate lol. So why would you expect an animal to respect this? I know it's a differnt story if they become aggressive or dangerous while being fed, but I think if they are calm during that than they should b left alone with their supper and not made to work during it. We ask alot of our horse most of the time,but they should have this time to themselves. IMOp.
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