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Honeymoon period for horses?

This is a discussion on Honeymoon period for horses? within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

     
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        01-25-2010, 02:42 PM
      #11
    Foal
    This is the first time he's every resisted being caught. I could lead him in without even a lead rope before yesterday.
    So how do I build up his confidence?
    (As far as the treats, I don't bring treats out into the field for several reasons including the one you mentioned.)
         
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        01-25-2010, 03:09 PM
      #12
    Showing
    Sounds like it's not just one thing but several. His age is a factor, a yound horse many times forgets or choses to forget what was taught just a few days ago. They need constant reinforcement of thier training and manners.
    He's in a new place with a new human. He's not sure where he fits or where you fit in his respect arena. That's another thing that will need constant reinforcement, respect.
    I don't think you can put a time limit on when he is going to figure all that out. It very much depends on how much work you are willing to put into him, and how aggresive you can be. It sounds like he needs a firm hand.
    If you want to keep working with him and have the time, I say keep at it. If not, can you return him to his previous owner and maybe start with a horse that is a bit older and more broke?

    As far as catching, go out every day several times a day. Catch him, put his halter on, then let hiim go. I did this with my hard to catch mare and it worked wonders.
         
        01-25-2010, 09:01 PM
      #13
    Green Broke
    Confidence building, drive him forward to touch different things like a chair, trailer, feed sack and misc. The squeeze game, drive him between you and say a fence and get closer and closer to make his space smaller. Drive him over tarps, boards, sack him out with plastic bags and get to the point were he stands while you flag him with a bag tied to a crop. Lots of backing up and backing though gates or into stall are some things that come to mind.
         
        01-26-2010, 09:58 AM
      #14
    Weanling
    I have owned my mare since June. She was always very quiet and mellow, markedly lazy at the barn I was at in the past. There were not very many horses or distractions. About a month ago I moved her to a barn with lots of horses, huge turnout, an indoor and tons of riders. While i'd say the transition was almost as daunting on me as her, I did notice a big change in Frida. She had established herself in the herd, made friends, loved her turnout. She had never been in the indoor before either. She began challenging me, I think maybe since everything around her changed, she figured our relationship had too. We tend to be over-coddling when we just get our horses or feel badly for mixing their life around, or at least in the beginning I was, so she would get spoiled as I changed our routine, didn't ask much of her in hopes she would be comforted. It is when I began to take charge, become assertive and stop making excuses for her that I began see her mindset change. I keep saying it was almost as if she was relieved, someone was there to manage the situation and be the boss. Howeve,it is hard to do that sometimes as horse owners. I know I just want to hug and spoil, have her give me all the wam fuzzies we all want right away. I quickly learned that a horse will never do that unless he first respects you. :) Good luck!
         
        01-26-2010, 10:07 AM
      #15
    mls
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Vidaloco    
    Sounds like it's not just one thing but several. His age is a factor, a yound horse many times forgets or choses to forget what was taught just a few days ago. They need constant reinforcement of thier training and manners.

    I don't think you can put a time limit on when he is going to figure all that out. It very much depends on how much work you are willing to put into him, and how aggresive you can be. It sounds like he needs a firm hand.
    If you want to keep working with him and have the time, I say keep at it.
    Yes. He is FOUR. Age is a factor but also some horses are very slow to mature mentally. You've added the stress of a new place, new routine, etc.

    Time, time, time and lots of patience. Rinse, lather and repeat.
         
        01-26-2010, 03:02 PM
      #16
    Green Broke
    Did you try Join-up? That would be a good confidence builder.
         
        01-26-2010, 08:41 PM
      #17
    Yearling
    My horse did this, and just like you, I worked with him for a couple of months before adopting him. He went through a lot of change when I took him (new barn, owner, horses, climate, housing conditions, etc.) and it took him some time to calm down and accept that.

    The other thing that is going on, and what I think may be responsible for a lot of the inconsistancy, is that he is testing you. This is usually when people notice that the honeymoon is over- new behaviors, resistance, etc. It is normal for them to test you, they're figuring out where they stand with their new herdmate. Make sure you come out on top, but also that he thinks you're fun and interesting to work with ie. Firm and fair leadership. My boy and I have come a long with with a lot of help from people on this forum. Being consistant and firm with him has won me a new best friend who respects my leadership. I'm sure you two will get there. Good luck!
         
        01-26-2010, 08:44 PM
      #18
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Seahorseys    
    It is when I began to take charge, become assertive and stop making excuses for her that I began see her mindset change. I keep saying it was almost as if she was relieved, someone was there to manage the situation and be the boss.
    yes! I completely agree. Also agree with the suggestions of trying confidence building exercises, especially ground work. We did some join up and the Parelli games. Now before this goes south, it is not a Parelli endorsement, just saying having a framework to come up with some exercises that help with confidence and relationship building, that dvd helped me a TON! I know there are some people on here that will be able to give you great ideas on these kinds of things.
         
        01-27-2010, 02:42 PM
      #19
    Foal
    UPDATE:Thanks for everything guys! Apparently the turn out thing was a one time deal (thankfully). The past two days he's even been coming to me when I call. And the haltering is getting better (but I have a feeling it will get worse again when I put the medication in his ears).
    I'm sure you are all right; he just needs more time to adjust and while I have the trust I probably need to work on the respect. (I also think he may be a little slow to mature mentally as there are some things he just plain doesn't seem to get.) I have been working on many exercises, like the tarp. He particularly likes to have his shoulder right up next to me, doesn't try to push me around but likes to get real close so I have been working on making him give me my space.
    I will keep working with him; I was just starting to get very discouraged as it seemed I was making little improvement yet more and more problems kept coming up.
    Anyone have other tips for building up his confidence? Cannot wait to try some of the ground exercises suggested!
         

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