Help - Anxious/High strung/Nervous - The Horse Forum
  • 2 Post By kcscott85
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post #1 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 04:52 AM Thread Starter
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Help - Anxious/High strung/Nervous

Anxious/High strung/Nervous.

this is the definition of my horse when Ridden, if i am on the ground and someone else is riding he is okay until i leave/get on another horse/get on him myself.

When that happens he starts pulling the bit, really mouthing it and chomping, he wont stand still then he yanks the bit HARD. When asked to walk on from a halt he'll leap into it or jump into it, he also feels very tense! when aksed to move up in speed he'll bolt.

Could this because by a ridden who was very rough and was always kicking and yanking?

He is EXTREMELY sensitive, and pain has been rulled out.

what can i do to calm him down?
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post #2 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 06:00 PM
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Please get a trainer to help you before anyone gets hurt. He has holes in his training that need to be filled.
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post #3 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 07:22 PM
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Where/when did you get the horse from? Any history on him? How has pain been ruled out (i.e., what did you do to rule out pain)?

I second getting a trainer. I saw your post on bolting a couple weeks ago and it seems you've been having this problem since you got him a few months ago. If you haven't figured out how to fix the problem by now, it's time to seek professional help. Not meaning it to be rude at all, so please don't take offense. But everytime you ride the horse, you are training him. So if he's not getting better then you also have to look at what you're doing. If you post a video, we might be able to pinpoint the problem a bit better.
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post #4 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 07:26 PM
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Before I offer you any advice, I want to warn you that I'm not a professional trainer. I have trained a greenbroke seven year old Appendix Quarter Horse, assisted in the training of a two year old Paint, and currently working on training a traumatized, nervous four year old Quarter Horse mare.

A good thing to do is turn back to ground work. If you have a lunge line and your horse lunges, do this for several weeks. The ultimate goal is to gain your horses respect and to teach him to trust in you. Without the trust, the horse will never respond exactly the way that you want him to.

The small things that make up the beginning of your horse training is what matters the most, and apparently your horse had a difficult start or was never finished. I don't know the life story behind your horse.. What type of bit do you use with him? Is it a high stress enviroment? Are you a confident rider?

I know that with the mare that my husband and I are currently working with, she chomps the bit as well. I'm going to take her back to some type of easy 'training bit.' I like to use snaffle, but everyone has their own preferences. Also, when you do plan to get on your horse again make sure that there is someone there that knows horses as well and see if they can notice anything out of the ordinary. Is the saddle hurting him? Is his mouth hurting him? Go through a mental list and if everything seems alright and he is still doing it and none of this works, advise with a trainer or someone you trust.

Horses are unpredictable, but a high strung and nervous horse is considerably even more unpredictable and dangerous. Also, there are some helpful articles available online that will help answer your questions, too. If you have satellite or cable, there is a program on there called RFDTV that has a lot of training advice at different times. (: I hope that some of this was helpful.

Good luck!
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post #5 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 07:44 PM
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kcsscott makes a good point; that if you continue to have this problem that has potential for great danger, that each time you ride and the horse repeats this behavior, you are building in his likelihood to try it again. Essentially; training IN behavior that you want trained out. So, though I have not read your other thread yet, I wonder if bringing in a trainer for a bit might not be worth it.

One thing that came to mind, in addition to the horse having built in this response due to his former owner's treatment of him, I would like to ask you whether the horse you had been riding prior to this one required a harder leg and hand?

I rode a horse for a few months that required a really hard leg and then when I switched to a more sensitive horse, I nearly blew her out of the water with the force I applied , by habit, on her sides. Had to relearn how to be easy with the legs. Does this bear any application to your situation?
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post #6 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 09:26 PM
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well, if you want to deal with this yourself and you are confident about it, whenever he was being anxious and not behaving or standing still, let him figure out himself that doing such things is more work than being patient and standing still. I would make him do something, back up, sidepass, turn on forehand, turn on haunches, bend, just do something so he figures out that being a knob is more work than being a good boy :)

Good luck!
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-02-2012, 11:11 PM
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I also feel a trainer is needed, you would be amazed at what a few 35.00 lessons can teach you and your horse... training doesn't have to be expensive.

I also agree with going back to ground work and lots and lots of desensitization. If you have a roundpen I would go back there until you can get blankets, ropes, leads, yellow slickers, etc all around him, over him, under him while he walks, jogs, lopes at your request. The time it takes is necessary and as others said, builds trust. Put him back in a snaffle if he is in anything else and bit him up, teaching him to give and carry himself in all gaits calmly.

I wouldn't get back on him again until you get the above mastered. Horses can be very dangerous, and a scared horse is the most dangerous - they aren't trying to be mean, they are trying to get AWAY and will do whatever necessary to do so. Desensitization will help him control his fear and help you stay safe.

There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living. - Nelson Mandela
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-03-2012, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Ace80908 View Post
I also feel a trainer is needed, you would be amazed at what a few 35.00 lessons can teach you and your horse... training doesn't have to be expensive.
I totally agree. I took lots of lessons on my horse when I first got him, and they helped our relationship, his training, and my riding skills SO MUCH. If you have a good trainer in your area, take advantage of it and get some help. Not everyone is lucky enough to have a good trainer and they have to figure stuff out on their own.
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