Get my horse to accept my dog! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 11-16-2013, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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Get my horse to accept my dog!

So we have two dogs and two horses.

My beautiful mustang mare Sahale still isn't trustable on the same side of the fence with our big dog Kuruk. I have let them interact through the fence for months, and also with the horses tied/ dog on a leash. Both our horses are fine with Jade our little heeler/border mix, and our filly Koosah is friendly and trustable loose around both dogs, but my mare Sahale just doesn't like Kuruk. He is happy and animated, but doesn't bark or chase or do anything to warrant Sahale's hate. Although the horse rescue told us Sahale was bit by a dog in a previous home, she was fine loose with the few dogs that lived at the rescue. When Kuruk comes up to her she pins her ears, head tosses, snakes after him, and sometimes tries to reach him to bite.

Starting next spring when our filly is old enough to ride we are going to trail ride and camp with both dogs (off leash) while we are riding both horses, but I need to trust Sahale won't stomp my baby boy first. Any advise would be appreciated!!!! Thanks!
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Last edited by MckenzieFalls; 11-16-2013 at 07:23 PM.
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post #2 of 16 Old 11-16-2013, 07:27 PM
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Leave the one dog home if you don't want him stomped. Your mare doesn't like him, and you can't train her to accept him. You may be able to control her under saddle, but when she and the dogs are loose all bets are off.

If you don't think you can control her and/or keep the dog away from her, leave the dog home.homeowners
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post #3 of 16 Old 11-20-2013, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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I would leave my dog home as it is, but I do believe you CAN work with a horse to teach it the pup is not something to be leery of... I mean if your horse pinned its ears at kids you would obviously teach it that's bad, and help it learn loud little kids are not a threat, while ensuring the kid is safe. It's no different with a dog. Besides, she gets along with my other dog, and with Ruk she isn't always mean, sometimes they sniff noses and she keeps her ears pricked, often she ignores him, is just when she is being sassy that she acts aggressive to I have hope for the two of them! I mean if I did let them loose I bet it would be fine (she was fine with the dogs wandering around the pastures at the rescue, I just want to be more careful with my dog) Thanks
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post #4 of 16 Old 11-20-2013, 02:15 PM
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Perhaps he reminds her of the dog who bit her. Something about his appearance, demeanor or attitude makes her not like him and you probably won't be able to change that. You should be able to teach her to behave and do what you say when you are riding, which would include not stomping the dog. I would also work on training the dog to stay away from the horse.
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post #5 of 16 Old 11-20-2013, 02:16 PM
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I don't blame the horse! If you look in the picture you posted the GSD is being threatening with his stance. Ears back, tail raised over his back, he doesn't have to bark or run after the horses for them to conceive a threat.
Some horses just do not like dogs. I have had a few, they all learned that if when out Fox Hunting, that if hounds came around them they had better never even think about lifting a leg'

I have never stopped my dogs from intermingling with the horses, if they get chased out the field then they learn to run! They soon know the horse that will go after them and keep a wary eye on it.
It was funny one winter, I had a dog later with me, he was resting after an injury and just turned out during the day. He, overnight developed terrible lymphangitis and all four legs were like tree trunks and oozing.
I put the horse in the loose shed so he could move around more, he was not going to let us touch his legs if he had his way (which he wouldn't!) the vet came and we discussed treatment. Whist we were stood talking my GSD came alongside this horse and started licking his back leg. The horse looked but did nothing. She cleaned the outside of one hind and started on the inside of the other. When that was clean he looked, moved carefully to reposition himself so she could do the other side. When finished he turned and faced her placing one foreleg under her nose and then the other.
This relationship continued for about three days, until the antibiotics kicked in. When the dog went to do her usual administrations he chased her out the stable' her tongue was not needed.
He never did and still doesn't like dogs.
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post #6 of 16 Old 11-21-2013, 09:42 AM
Join Date: Jul 2013
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Our pony is fine with three of the dogs, but HATES one of the kelpies. Kelpies herd from behind and this dog likes to sit right behind the pony, practically under her tail, right in the blind spot. She knows its there but she can't see it! It completely freaks her out. She freezes and sweats. She's never kicked, which is a pity in some ways as the dog doesn't have any respect for what the pony could do if she wanted.

I've taken the approach that the dog needs to learn better behavior, not the horse. The horse is doing all she can to deal with it already. Best approach I've found, and one that some might disagree with, so be nice is that I take a lunge whip with me, with the string rolled around the stick, and give the dog a quick whack when she gets behind the pony. I don't hit the dog hard or anywhere delicate like her head etc, but it would sting and she always moves away.

However you chose to train the dog, I believe it's easier to teach them not to "hunt" the horse rather than try to stop the horse defending itself for a perceived threat.
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post #7 of 16 Old 11-21-2013, 09:55 AM
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I agree it appears the horse is afraid of the dog, from the picture posted. Maybe she is not afraid of the other dog because it is smaller, and it was a large dog that bit her. Or maybe the other dog is calmer around the horses. That one does look a bit threatening, or just high-strung. Maybe you could try encouraging the dog to hang around quietly near the fence, lying down, etc. so the horse does not feel threatened. Over time she may get over it, but only time will tell. Good luck!
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post #8 of 16 Old 11-21-2013, 10:17 AM
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I agree that it might be best to just leave the dog at home. 2 weeks ago my Jack Russell was stomped by our mustang, several times. It all happened about 30 feet from me, and there was nothing I could do to stop it. I really thought he was dead, and it was one of the worst things I've had to witness.

Miraculously, Jack is now doing ok......But I no longer let him come to the barn with me, it's just not worth it.

Horses aren't my whole life...They make my life whole.
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post #9 of 16 Old 11-21-2013, 11:29 AM
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Actually, I don't think the horse's expression shows fear but more of a Dirty Harry attitude....Are you feeling lucky, huh, are you punk?
Some horses just don't like dogs. Dog, predator...Horse, survivor.
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post #10 of 16 Old 11-21-2013, 11:34 AM
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That horse is not afraid of the dog. She's giving him a, 'I'll stomp you the first chance I get!' look. That's a pissed off face, not a fearful one.
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