Herd bound horse solutions?
My gelding, Sully, is very much herd-bound. He’s low confidence, lower on the pecking order in the large herd he lives in, and we think a combination of rough handling and poor training in his younger years have given him some big issues as far as confidence. Multiple experienced folks that have seen him note that he’s very adolescent in behavior, and behaves much more like a green horse half his age than a 10 year old. I don’t know anything about his history further back than March of last year, when he was pulled from the kill lot at Sugarcreek in Ohio by a group that specializes in Haflingers. We’re also pretty confident that someone got scared of him and returned him to the rescue because frankly, his ground manners stink and he throws big hissy fits when he doesn’t get his way. I’m very confident in handling him on the ground and I don’t let him get away with anything, but so far I have not been able to work with him as much as I’d like due to a lack of light. Ideally, I’d be working him 3-4 days a week or more.
I plan to send him to a trainer for 30 days in the spring, but I have not dealt with this particular problem in one of my own horses. I’m looking for ideas that could make some progress before then, and I’d love to hear any solutions that worked for others. I keep reading “Well, prevention is the key”, but well, that was likely an issue long before I came along.
Anyone who feels like picking apart the session descriptions over at my journal, feel free!