Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Humboldt, Saskatchewan
I have dealt with a number of horses like this, usually in a big pasture with a whole herd of other horses and they can be so frustrating. I would suggest bringing a buddy for him into the side pen (so he can stay calm but can not run around the whole pasture if he decides to leave you) then just work incredibly slow on catching him use pressure and retreat. If at the end of the 2 hours you haven't caught him, oh well.
I get them comfortable with me touching their head and neck then putting my arms around their neck then I go over it all again with the halter and lead, (always with a lot of pressure and retreat) it is a slow frustrating process but you have to try your best to keep it positive. I have found that sometimes if you put in a couple of hours and don't even bother catching them (i.e my goal for today is, at the end of two hours is to put my arms around his neck) then if after an hour you get it done great! You are happy, lots of praise and possible a treat or two for him maybe reenforce the hug a couple of times with him (if you think he can succeed) then let him out, everyone is happy! Next time you come out work a little farther (hug him to review then have him calm with the lead/halter involved), try to set small goals so it is always a positive experience for both of you, then work on basic halter training and basic respect gaining ground work.
I know this is a frustrating response, it may take a while and I realize that you're volunteering your time so it's not ideal but this is the best method I have found for me personally, some days are tougher than others I once spent a grand total of 6 hours trying to catch my mare because I was convinced I was going to catch her and ride her that night, it didn't really help she was still bad to catch afterwards but spending more time and getting less frustrated has helped a lot.