Horse is afraid of the noise behind - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 01:47 PM Thread Starter
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Horse is afraid of the noise behind

I started to go out to "public" more this year, and found out that my mares are afraid of noise behind. I mean if someone fly pass them really noisy (we have some hm-hm crazy people around) I can feel they are all tense and try to jump forward (and of course turn and face if possible). What is the best way to "desentize" them to the "danger" from behind? I made my mom to shake the bushes behind yesterday on trail, but is there anything else I can do?
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post #2 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 02:41 PM
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Horses are flight animals, it's a natural instinct to be afraid of something approaching them from behind. In the wild it could be a predator that wants to eat them. You have to remember that they are still wild animals and you can't train every instinct out of them.

Just remember repetition and trust.
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post #3 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, I understand that. I just hope to "diminish" the effect. One of them come to bucking when scared, which is not good at all.
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post #4 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 03:05 PM
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Not only are wild animals afraid of loud noises, but domesticated animals are, as well. Dogs especially are frightened by loud noises. Veterinarians warn dog owners in advance of the 4th of July to be prepared to comfort their dogs as soon as the fireworks begin.
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post #5 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 03:12 PM
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If it were me, I would just incorporate some "scary behind stuff" into training.

Get your mares used to trusting that you won't let anything scary attack them from behind. It will take a lot of work and not everything will get covered.

You could start with things you know they aren't afraid of, and make noise with it behind them (far enough that no one gets kicked!) and then let them go investigate what that noise was. Do that over and over again and eventually they'll be less spooky. Hopefully anyway!

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post #6 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 03:52 PM
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Remember that horses can see behind them, too, so as you do de-sensitization training, mix in movement without noise behind also. My experience has been that some horses are much more sensitive to what is going on behind (movement and/or noise) them than others.

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post #7 of 10 Old 07-20-2009, 04:20 PM
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One thing to think about is how your body reacts while on the horse when YOU hear the noise. If you hear a car coming while riding are you inadvertently stiffening up to counteract how your horse may act? This could case the horse to think that there is something to be concerned about making them more jumpy.

Otherwise for the "monsters" in the woods if probably takes you by surprise more then the horse. More time riding is what is needed to get over it.


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post #8 of 10 Old 07-21-2009, 07:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you all, folks! Those are great advices!
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post #9 of 10 Old 07-21-2009, 08:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel_Leaguer View Post
One thing to think about is how your body reacts while on the horse when YOU hear the noise. If you hear a car coming while riding are you inadvertently stiffening up to counteract how your horse may act? This could case the horse to think that there is something to be concerned about making them more jumpy.

Otherwise for the "monsters" in the woods if probably takes you by surprise more then the horse. More time riding is what is needed to get over it.
I agree with AL and want to add that riding a nervous/sensitive horse with more experienced and calm horses is very beneficial also. The nervous horse will draw from the other horses energy (they will be it's "herd" leader (s) ) and after a few "Oh Dear" moments will usually settle down. After a bit, you might get an ear towards the "object" but if the other horses aren't showing any concern, your horse probably will just not put any more energy in that direction either. That's been my experience , good luck!
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post #10 of 10 Old 07-21-2009, 08:12 AM
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Maybe someone already suggested this, but maybe you can find someone with a quadm dirtbike, or noisy lawnmower to help with groundwork.
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