Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Eastern Montana
• Horses: 0
We use the ASK, TELL, DEMAND process for nearly everything. It sounds as if it is warranted here. We start with squeezing and bumping with your legs. That is the ASK. The next step is (while squeezing and bumping) we start to cluck. That is the TELL. The final step if those get no attention is to spank on the hindquarters. I will use the end of my split reins or a dressage whip. That is the TELL. If you don't start with the first two then eventually the only thing that will get him to move forward is the spank. He needs to realize that if he doesn't listen to the first two then things will get amped up. We had an issue with my daughter's colt where he wouldn't move forward and instead either stood still or backed up. We started the ASK,TELL,DEMAND in the roundpen and got him moving off of the lightest pressure possible. We then moved to the lunge line, pointing first, then clucking and then spanking with a stick and string if necessary. Once he moved easily and willingly there then we repeated the process under saddle.
A couple of things to be aware of...first if you have to give them a good hard spank they may kick out or jump forward from that. Be ready for that and either hold onto the horn or postion yourself to be able to ride a jump forward. All you are looking for is a step (or two or three). As soon as he comes to a stop, repeat the process until he learns that if he doesn't move off of a squeeze and bump or a kiss then he is going to get spanked. When I did this with my horse, I only spanked him one time and he has remembered it for a LONG time. All I have to do is THINK about spank if he doesn't respond to squeeze and kiss. With my daughter's horse, we repeat the process regularly as he wants to make sure we are still serious about him moving off. Once they learn it though, it really works well.
Good luck and be careful.
Cowboy, Nature and Wildlife Photographer