Getting my horse's full respect and willingness? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 10-06-2010, 11:23 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Unhappy Getting my horse's full respect and willingness?

Disclaimer: Scroll all the way down to basic main problems if you don't feel like reading the below paragraphs. They just go into better detail of those problems.

Well my horse has been lazy since I bought her(which hasn't been too long at all) and the previous owner told me she was lazy.

But we have some serious respect problems. Like she'll just stop when I finally get her to a slowish trot and then (even with warnings - hitting air and ground with whip, clucking, lastly giving her a tap on the butt) and she'll crow hop, maybe buck a few times, throw her head low, but go off into a trot. Unfortunate thing is, she'll start coming in on me and just slow down. I feel like I'm beating her, but I don't touch her without giving her warnings for her to get moving. Idk it's just that I have to do it A LOT and it's just frustrating. And this is all with nothing, but a halter, lounge rope and whip, no saddle or anything.

When it comes to leading her, forget about it. She bullies and pushes anyone out of her way unless she's feeling super lazy that day. But I just give her a few warnings and maybe a tap with the lead rope and she'll wake up, but then she'll go right back to pushing me over.

I don't let her go, but the entire time it feels like I'm just constantly pulling her back and that can't be confortable for her and she gives me zero chances to give her release so she can learn "hm, maybe if I don't try and charge ahead of her maybe I'll get this annoying pressure off of me"

I talked to another girl at my stable who said something about a backing exercise where it's assert your dominance so I tried it. You stand a few feet away and gradually increase pressure with your lead rope on the halter until she backs a few steps, then you reward. First you jiggle the rope, then you intensify if she doesn't move, then you start stomping and commanding back if she doesn't. She does move, but not back wards. She always turns her head to the right and I just can't keep her in line for her to back up properly.

Oh and that's another thing. Whenever she DOES slightly lounge, she can only lounge to her left. She just looks dumbfounded when I try it from the right.

Also, can you help me with teaching her how to stop during a lounge? I can get her started, but I'm not sure how to make her stop. Let alone make her change sides (to the right)

Basic main problems....

-Stopping her from turning in on a lounge, getting her going and making her not so lazy.

- Stopping her from running me over while leading her. Getting her to respect my personal space, which she doesn't what so ever.

- Stopping her in a lounge, then switching her to her other side.

Thank you (:
Meggan Marie
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 04:42 AM
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Western Australia
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Hello! I have the same problem with my horse when lunging.

To teach him some one rides him whilst another keeps the lunging rope on to give him more direction - its taken quite a few goes but with the direction of a rider he seems to be picking up both reigns on the lunge instead of just one! So now when we lunge on either reign he is not as unsure or confused mine is more comfortable on the left as he used to be a racer and thats the reign they race on

Hope that helps a little
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post #3 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 05:30 AM
Join Date: Jan 2009
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I would suggest that you not force the issue where you are going to get hurt or in a big fight with the horse.

Look for ways to get your horse moving (and conditioned) without nagging.

A lazy horse is many times an out of shape horse.

I like to grab a horse that the horse that gets along with the horse that I am working with and pony them all over creation to get them "Freed up" and moving.

Later this horse can be used as a lead horse for some trail rides that more conditioning.

"The greatest strength is gentleness."
- Iroquois Proverb
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 05:39 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: South Africa
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As for the issures with leading, here is a good video that I always recommend:

And a couple of articles to read: Training Your Horse To Lead - Part One and for a slightly different approach, Leading a Horse For Respect

As for the lunging, are you lunging in an open area or a lunge arena/round pen? I find the best for coming in is for your horse to first be fine walking correctly at the correct distance away from you when lunging. I use my lunge whip for this. If my horse starts coming in, I move the whip up to point at their shoulder and say "out", firmly. Once they have moved back to where I want them to be, I return the whip to its usual position behind them.

As for the laziness, I can hazard a guess at helping though I have the opposite problem with my horse. I like to follow the "ask-tell-demand" set up. I ask my horse to trot on by simply giving the voice command of "trot on" - said in an energetic way. If she doesnt trot on, then I flick the whip once or twice behind her. If she still doesnt trot on, then get dominant on her. Crack the whip, flick it across her hindquarters, anything to get her moving. And then, only let up when she is moving out nicely, not a slow trot, a proper trot! I know it will seem like a pain because you'll have to do it a lot but if you're consistent and get on her case the moment she slows down, she should learn that its your way or the highway.

For the last problem, getting her to stop and turn her around. I like to teach the "whoa" command when I am leading first. (I teach "whoa", "walk" and "trot on" on the lead first before lunging). Everytime you stop while leading her, say whoa. The trick with word commands, or at least I've found it to be so, is to say the word with lots of energy when getting them to move up a pace, and then to say it slowly and calmly when getting them to slow down. Once she knows the voice command, and since she is a lazy horse, she should be easy to slow down on the lunge. Get her walking, then say "whoa", I lower the whip to the ground, look down at the ground and 'take away' my more assertive, driving body position. My mare then stops and faces me. I then approach her, give her a rub on her face and then ask to go around the other way.

Getting her to go around on the other side, the best way is to get someone to help you and lead the horse around (from the ground is fine) while you're lunging on that side. I unfortunately did not have that luxury when my horse refused to go around to left. So this is how I did it: My mare had the habit of turning in to face me and backing up instead of moving forwards when I asked her to go left. So standing quite close to her, I opened up my left arm, gesturing with the lunge line which direction I wanted her to go and said "walk on". When she backed up, I started gently flicking the whip and kept approaching her, moving the whip more and more. I eventually had to flick her with it on her hindquarters until she moved forwards and then I dropped the pressure off, and gradually let out the line until she was making a 20m circle. I had to do the same thing about 4 more times and since then she is fine with lunging on the left.

Sorry for the essay! Hope it helped!
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post #5 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 06:56 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Western Australia
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is she a tb??
the lunging issue may be from he being raced and only really worked on one side, she will be really unbalanced at the other side but she will get the hang of it.
When I got my tb he was 14 ish and he had no clue how to lunge, he would turn and face me and just stand there, he would have fits you name it. Only now I am able to lunge both sides and he does it perfectly, well almost :P
As for the stopping that also takes time. I say halt and expanded it out, if he doesn't start to stop I will pull him in a little bit ask again and so on till he stops.
It does end up with him being really close but I then send him out and he will do it earlier not getting as close
I hope that helped :)
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post #6 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 07:00 AM
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I'd look into some dvds and trainer/friend with lots of experience dealing with horses to help. There is no magical fix to any issue (besides probably bucking because of the bad fit ), you just have to be consistent and firm (while still gentle and not violent). I agree with Marecare - often lazy = out of shape. It's amazing how much better my lazy qh trots and canters after she got in shape. As for respect... When my very bossy alphish and smart qh started to jump over top of me I let her run into the stick. That was HER choice to do, so she dealt with it. She learned the lesson. Also when she tried to turn on lunge, I stopped her RIGHT AWAY, and sent her to the direction I wanted her to go again. Tried again? Stop and send again. Etc.
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post #7 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Yeah I've been getting some of Clinton Anderson's (I've seen him on RFDTV and I loved him right away) but when you say make her get away when she turns in, how exactly? I think I've seen somewhere you put it in where you're standing like around her sholder and if she doesn't back off from your warnings, you give her a pop. She's a 15-16 QH and honestly it looks like she's neverr lounged. I got her for pretty dirt cheap since the owner couldn't afford her anymore and just wanted to get out of the business. But I've never really had a horse who honest to goodness act like they have no idea what a round pen is and what you do in it. (We've only been in the round pen, she's no where near ready to have to freedom of doing it in an areana because she'll probably just stand there and sniff the ground)
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 04:06 PM
Join Date: Mar 2008
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Dont know who your reply is aimed at. But even if she doesnt know whats going on (you say she's fine on the one way around) and if you dont have the luxury of a helper, then, when she turns in, try and move more in a 'driving' position. If you think of when you lunge, you, the horse, the lunge line and the whip make a triangle shape with you being the tip of the triangle. When she is facing you, you need to get back to that triangle shape by moving more to her right hand side (if you want her to go right) else you're asking her to move with you being directly in front of her, and she'll most likely back up.

And then put the pressure on, using your lunge line to indicate where you want her to go (dont pull on the line, just extend your arm thats holding the line straight out to your right) and then put pressure on with your body and the whip. The moment she takes one step to the right, drop the pressure. Then she'll start to understand what you want from her. I find that its the first step thats the hardest, once they take one, they usually keep going.
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 05:34 PM
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My little mare didn't know how to lunge at first in a round pen. What I did, was just use the lead rope, and hold onto the end and stand by her flanks (out of kicking distance) and sent her forward, and the rope would tighten then make her head turn in, and she would realize I wanted her to go around me. Then, I took off the lead rope, and free lunged her.

Free lunging is easy, you can communicate your body langueage to your horse. To get the horse to go around you, always stand behind their shoulder point, this pushes them forward. You may have to wave your hands or fling out a lead rope (some people use lariat ropes, I use nylon lead rope) and coil it up and if they slow down or stop, send it out behind them so it makes noise to keep them going.

The first sign to look for, is the mare's ear to turn in on you. She is listening. You can also make her change directions by cutting her off, way in front of her. To get her to stop running, back off. Take steps back. She will slow down and stop. If she doesn't. Then turn away from her completely. you are then putting no pressure on her at all. When you turn sideways to her, or turn your back to her, that is a sign that she can relax and come back in to your herd.

This is a link of me working my filly in the round pen. It also teaches respect becuase it puts in charge as the lead mare: Horses and Me

Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin' it back. -- Unkown
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-22-2010, 10:08 AM
Join Date: Sep 2010
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My TB does the same thing. He'll turn and face me in the round pen, and I'll really have to force the issue with him to get him moving. Especiall to the opposite side, clockwise.
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disrespect , lazy horse , loungeing

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