Halter Training an unsocialized horse - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 12-01-2011, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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Halter Training an unsocialized horse

Hi All
Iwas wondering what methods you all use to halter train a horse. I have a four-year old gelding who needs to be halter trained so I can either train him further or more likely sell him on. He was mine from birth but I neglegted to raise him correctly, he is soon to be daddy to four foals and let's say they Will be socialized early. I was planning on doing "join up" with him. He is as good as a wild horse, as far as he is concerned he wants nothing to do with humans if he can help it. So I was just wondering what other methods are out there to teach a horse like Mischief to accept a halter.
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post #2 of 18 Old 12-01-2011, 01:54 PM
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Can you catch and hold him with ANYTHING? I've seen out of control stallions go through auctions before and nobody can catch them. (The auction handlers use cattle prods on them.)
I think you've got quite a job here. Here's a suggestion that is based on a farm that used to breed Welsh Mountain ponies and would show them under harness. The yearlings would be turned out together. They ALL had a very stout halter with a lead permanently attached, that would just reach the ground. They would teach themselves to not panic bc every time the yearling stepped on the rope he would "snag" himself. It really helped them to not panic when tied, but no human had to risk injury during the process. I think they were left with these on for a good week--usually during the dry part of the summer. By the end of the week a handler could catch them, tie them, and start training.
Honestly, if you don't train him to this it's possible that he'll be dog food in the near future bc NOBODY wants to deal with a 4yo or older that is wild. =/
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post #3 of 18 Old 12-01-2011, 03:08 PM
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I'm not sure I'm understanding all this. He is a gelding, which means he was caught at some point, but he is going to be the daddy to 4 foals. Can you explain that to me?

I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.

It's not always what you say but what they hear.
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post #4 of 18 Old 12-01-2011, 11:32 PM Thread Starter
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Hi guys, maybe I should clarify a few points. Iridehorses - He was gelded in January of this year, but round about this time last year while I was still under the mistaken impression that Mr Mischief did not have the neccesary equipment to get a mare pregnant he got a little naughty with a few of my mares. One foaled week before last, three more are due any day. Sure he was kinda caught to be gelded, but to use my vets' words we held a rodeo to do it. He was chased into a crush so the vet could administer the sedatives, and into that crush he did not go easily, Then he proceeded to fight us every way he could, rearing up and almost breaking the vets arm to avoid the needle among other tricks. We then let him out so he could calm down and the sedative take effect. He was despite being doped very resistant to having the anaesthtetic administered. When he eventually did succomb and the vet could get the job done he came back round in record time. Unfortunately it was geld him now or seperate him from the herd which would have driven him mad. This is why I'm reluctant to maybe put him in a crush again so we could like Corporal suggested put a halter and rope on him. although I might try that when I've gotten him to accept a halter. I know of a lady trainer in our vicinity who puts a halter on her foals then attaches the lead rope of said halter to the donkeys' halter and sending them out to graze for a day. When they come in tonight that foal leads easily. Aince I don't have a dondey like that I'll just let him drag the rope, his paddock is right on front of my house. so I can easily see if he gets himself into a tight spot.
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post #5 of 18 Old 12-01-2011, 11:56 PM
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Honestly, I think it sounds like you're in over your head... and it may be best to consult a professional to help you get him under some semblance of control.

Does this horse have any trust in humans? Will he allow you to walk up and touch him? If not, you should keep him in a small paddock and take responsibility for feeding him and mucking out his area daily. You'll have to desensitize him to touch and work up to getting a halter on him.

Take a look at this video for a preview of some of the work you'll need to do. This trainer is shown working with wild mustangs. I would also advise that you consider buying this trainer's DVDs (or someone similar) as a resource. Even if you don't buy her DVDs, you should check out her other videos.

Last edited by Eolith; 12-02-2011 at 12:04 AM.
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post #6 of 18 Old 12-02-2011, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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I'm definately a little deeper in the muck with this horse than I wish I was. Normally i would send him away to be trianed, but the lady first of all asks a small fortune - R1500 plus 10 bales of lucern per horse and I'm bankrupt right now. Also the lady doesn't start or tame a horse she breaks them. She starts all the horses in a jointed pelham on a curb rein. I have a person who claims to know what he's doing willing to buy him, but would prefer him halter tame. He will not allow anybody to approach nearer than about one to two metres from him if he"s at liberty. He normally lives out in the veld with the rest of my about ten strong herd. His father was the same way, I did "join up" with him when he was about Mischiefs age and it worked well enough, after that I could catch him. I eventually sold him to somebody else cause we never could get any further than halter tame. He seemed genuinely scared of a saddle and would kick anybody foolish enough to try and touch his legs/ belly. Mischief was never supposed to become a dad. up unitill about two months ago `i fully believed I had gelded him in time to prevent "rouge genes" from continuing to exist. All the best laid plans of mice and men...
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post #7 of 18 Old 12-02-2011, 02:30 AM Thread Starter
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I forgot to ask the name of the trainer in the video, my connection is too slow, I will have to wait till I go to town next week and have a faster connection to watch the video. I did buy myself CA's Colt starting series though. He is one of the few trainers whose dvd's are readily available for sale here in SA.
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post #8 of 18 Old 12-02-2011, 06:23 PM
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I loved that video! Is that what you are using with your BLM mustang, Eolith?
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post #9 of 18 Old 12-03-2011, 08:12 PM
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So..umm, my two geldings I recieved had similar issues. One I did not keep after he finally tried to strike at my head after 3 months of work and him making it very clear he did not want people around. And of course, at my age, he is above my skill level and I dont want to get hurt. So he's back in pasture. Anyways, the other one has taken me 3 months and gone from wild, jumping fences to avoid people and kicking to semi quiet but hot, being ridden and even knows how to bow. So its not impossible. But if you do not have experience, I would suggest getting a trainer..which is not likely as trainers wont take a problem like that. I would suggest somehow getting him into a paddock or a pen and roundpenning the crap out of him for a week. If you dont know how to round pen, I can make you a video likely and explain it to you. But be aware that you need to be extremely quick with your timing and able to move fast.

Where are you located?
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post #10 of 18 Old 12-03-2011, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
I loved that video! Is that what you are using with your BLM mustang, Eolith?
Yep tinyliny, the techniques in the video are a lot of what I did initially with my little wild one. He's such a good boy he doesn't need any tricks to be touched or caught any more though! Just today I went out and put a halter on him and led him around like an old pro. We're currently working on desensitizing his legs as prep for picking up and handling his hooves... he's going to need them trimmed soon so it's the priority right now.

Sheepdog, the trainer's name is Kitty Lauman... she's based in Oregon state in the US. I didn't realize that you weren't in the US; that might make it tricky to get this trainer's DVDs or anything.
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