Horse games? - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-27-2009, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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Horse games?

My three-year-old, Bandit, is very obviously getting bored with his usual ground work. He'll lunge both with and without a lunge line, he'll lay down when I ask him, he'll jump into trailers like they're nothing (and he'll even jump in the back of the truck and lay down), he sidepasses, bends.... everything I could think of to teach him, he knows. I'm working on teaching him to pull a cart -- so far all he needs is some work on ground driving and then I'll take him out on the trail.
Are there any good exercises I can do with him? Just something fun that might entertain him.
Oh, and I wasn't planning on teaching him to ride, so nothing like "get him used to a saddle" or anything.

I'm considering teaching him to do small jumps on the lunge line, but... I have to find some jumps first.
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post #2 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 06:40 PM
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Do you have any ground poles or cones? I'm thinking play obsticale course with him. Have him go over poles, around cones, anything to change things up a bit. Maybe step it up and add some desensitizing. Get him used to walking over tarps, past a flag or something else scary. If he's bored, he's probably smart and a fast learner. I say take advantage of it.
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 09:39 PM Thread Starter
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I don't have any cones or poles, but I can get a handful of bamboo poles, and something to substitute for cones. I guess I never really thought of an obstacle course... I might just try it. I'll have a hard time finding scary things, though... I've already desensitized him to everything I could lay my hands on... tractors, ATVs, dogs, stampeding cattle, a small airplane, bags, tarps, being blindfolded, chainsaws, my dad and I's famously huge bonfires, fireworks... I'm running out of things that he could've been afraid of. I even got bored one day and ponied him up to a nearby restaurant and through the drive-thru so he could hear the speakers and the windows opening and stuff. o.o'
If I come across something he spooks at, I stop right there and get him used to it. And on days when I get bored and have some extra time, I go out looking for 'scary' things.

I did start him jumping on the lungeline the other day... just a couple little logs with a barrel on the outside of the jump (so he can't go around it). He started jumping them almost automatically, then my friend acidentally knocked over a barrel, and he jumped that, too. X3 Only hit the logs once or twice, and he dodged around them once. I'll have to find some bigger logs or a better makeshift jump sometime... But for now, he seems to be enjoying himself.
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 09:47 PM
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Do you mind me asking why you have a young horse that you don't plan on riding?
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post #5 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 09:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onetoomany View Post
Do you mind me asking why you have a young horse that you don't plan on riding?
No, I don't mind. He's too small for me to comfortably ride... somewhere between 12 and 13 hands; the smallest horse I'll ride is his dam, who's 14 hands, and that's only to keep her from getting lax in her training (she's the "beginner's horse" of my herd). I considered breaking him to be a kid's pony, but I wouldn't know how to go about doing it, so I decided I'd just break him for harness instead. So he has a little cart that he's learning to pull around. His brother, Dante, is destined for the same training, for the same reasons.
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 10:21 PM
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LOL! I can picture him going up to the drive thru window! The people working at that restaurant must have been a bit surprised. Maybe you teach him some tricks? Counting, bowing, stuff like that?
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post #7 of 7 Old 04-28-2009, 10:28 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck View Post
LOL! I can picture him going up to the drive thru window! The people working at that restaurant must have been a bit surprised. Maybe you teach him some tricks? Counting, bowing, stuff like that?
They're used to me by now... I ride to the local pizza parlor, bar & grills, and that drive-thru on a regular basis. They were a bit surprised that I was ponying him with me that day, and a couple of the waitresses came out to feed him carrots.

Hm, I taught him to lay down... mostly by accident. I'm not really sure how to teach any other tricks. There's a book at the tack shop I work at that explains all that, but I have a hard time learning from books. You don't know of a good video, d'ya?
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