Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Alberta, Canada
Sounds to me like it's just an issue of needing more work.
I worked with gelding for the longest time - Well, to be fair it was only about 45 days lol - but he just wouldn't stay honest about his collection, but for him it was either gait. I'd ask him, he'd collect, we'd go a few paces, he's stretch. Drove me bonkers. lol
Unless they are one of those horses where a nice, slow western pleasure jog is natural (I had the most amazing Impressive gelding who could do this. Wow. Too bad he lost his head.) a lot of them have difficulties learning to shorten their stride and slow right down because it's not a gait that's really natural too them.
Takes lots of work and lots of patience in order for them to be able to keep their back rounded out and their strides stunted.
Sounds like you guys are on the right track, you just need more practice work.
If he's uncomfortable with it, you can always ease him into it. Get him to jog two or three circles in a nice and collected manner then let him stop and relax for a minute, then do it again. Once he can pick up those circles in a jog without ever losing his collection, you can up the number of circles.
It uses a whole different set of muscles on him and it could be he just getting used to having them broken in. :)