Horse bucks going into a lope in one direction.

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Horse bucks going into a lope in one direction.

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    03-06-2013, 08:34 PM
Horse bucks going into a lope in one direction.

My friend's horse doesn't like going into a lope in one direction and will buck if she makes him. The buck today was a small one she could barely feel but last time was a heels in the air real buck although he didn't get her off. He's done it before as well but has never gotten her off.
He's been checked physically a few times by a chiro and a massage therapist so there's no physical reason that she can find for him to do it. He's 8 years old and was broke as a young horse and then left for quite a while and only ridden sporadically. He had some fear issues but my friend has brought him a long way and he's very laid back now.
Here's my question. What would you do to a horse that did that? A couple of people who are good horse people have said to get off and punish him and then longe him until he's tired and then get back on. Another horse person as well as myself feel that seh should stay on and just do some disengaging his hind and small circles and then ask for it again. We feel that getting off and dealing with him is long past the point where he's going to associate it with the buck.
Any thoughts? Thank you!
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    03-06-2013, 08:37 PM
Super Moderator
Well... Has his tack fit been checked? And has a vet checked him? A chiro and a message therapist are great but they aren't vets...

It could be three things that I can think of right off the top of my head.... Pain, Imbalance, and Attitude...

My guess from that tiny paragraph would be either he's got some holes in his training and he's not balanced or he's got a pain issue, maybe a stifle injury....

Those are just guesses though...
my2geldings, smrobs and Corporal like this.
    03-06-2013, 08:43 PM
Originally Posted by farmpony84    
Well... Has his tack fit been checked? And has a vet checked him? A chiro and a message therapist are great but they aren't vets...

It could be three things that I can think of right off the top of my head.... Pain, Imbalance, and Attitude...

My guess from that tiny paragraph would be either he's got some holes in his training and he's not balanced or he's got a pain issue, maybe a stifle injury....

Those are just guesses though...
I wondered the exact same thing. I would have your friend make sure the horse gets its teeth checked and tack check. I had a mare who was very sensitive to proper fitting tack, so I would be looking into that.
    03-06-2013, 09:17 PM
Thank you, I knew I'd forget to mention something. His teeth have been done a couple of months ago.
If it was his tack I'd be surprised that the only time it was an issue was going into a lope going to the right in a circle. He's fine going to the left and in every other gait. Loping to the right is his 'bad' way and he doesn't like it.
He could have a balance issue and he's been very heavy on the forehand but has come a long way and is much better. Also, he doesnt do it every time. One of the people who told her to get off and spank him and then make him work from the ground is a high end trainer and coach that she was taking lessons with.
The question remains- if he has no physical reason to do this and she's dealing with attitude or just being stubborn- what do you think is the best way to deal with it?
    03-06-2013, 09:20 PM
Sounds like he's got a hip out. Have a chiro look at him.
    03-08-2013, 09:29 AM
Super Moderator
What happens when she just keeps loping him. That may be a 'high end' trainer telling her to get off, but that is the day I would change trainers. 'Getting off' is the ultimate 'pay-ff' for an unacceptable behavior.

If his teeth, saddle fit and soundness have all been checked by competent people, then I would 'study' the behavior a little more to get more 'insight' into its triggers.

Does he pick up that lead OK?

Does he move OK to the right on a longe-line or in a round pen?

Does he move to the right as well as the left under saddle without loping?

Since he is not bucking hard enough to get her off, what does he do if she continues to keep riding forward to the right and ignores it?

Just stopping him every time he does this is about as good a 'reward' for the behavior as getting off. If everything else checks out OK, that is probably what it is.
smrobs and LisaG like this.
    03-08-2013, 09:48 AM
I'm guessing it's a physical problem too, probably in the hips but possibly elsewhere. She needs to get a good equine vet out to do a physical work-up to find the problem.

Horses don't just buck going into the canter on one direction because they have attitude - it's probably the clearest sign you can think of to say "I can't do that, it hurts".

A physical work-up starting with walk and trot in a straight line, moving to lunging without, then with tack on, completed with working with the rider on will find the problem.
    03-08-2013, 11:31 AM
Thanks everyone.

I appreciate the suggestions as far as potential physical issues and I'm aware that I'm new to the board so nobody knows how much or how little horse experience I have. The fact is that whether he has a physical issue, has ill fitting tack, or is just being naughty, it's not acceptable for him to buck.
The tack seems to fit but it's been my experience that just because we think something fits it doesn't necessarily mean the horse likes it which is why so many people have custom fitted saddles sitting in their tack rooms that they never use on the horse they were built for.
I'm just trying to get a general concensus from a few people to pass on to my friend regarding what to do. I have suggested what I would do but when a higher end trainer says something different it can be hard to ignore.
I do believe he might be having a bit of a balance issue and I also think she might be making it happen by tensing up when she asks for a lope to the right, or doing something with her hands. She also sits somewhat unbalanced which could be causing it. I haven't actually seen what's really going on, the only time it happened when I was around was the other day and I wasn't watching. We're going to see what's going on this weekend when we have more time and have a few people ride him and see what happens.

So the question is still, what would you do if your horse bucked on occasion? How would you discipline him, if at all?

Thanks Cherie, you did answer my question.
    03-08-2013, 11:32 AM
I almost forgot. He lopes just fine in either direction on a longe line.
    03-08-2013, 11:51 AM
Green Broke
This screams physical issue to me. Has she tried riding him in a different saddle?

Bucking is either a)fear(doubt it in this case), b)pain(possible) or c)disrespect.

Working him harder when he bucks, teaching him that he can't get away with misbehavior, will work great, if its disrespect. If its pain related then you will end up with a miserable horse who learns that work = pain. You will distroy his work ethic. That's why its so important to rule out pain first.

I second calling a vet, it sounds like it could be a hip

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