Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Georgia, United States
Horse with issues...
About a year and a half ago a friend of a friend bought a 3 year old, 13.1 hand welsh/haflinger cross pony and the guy asked us to keep it on our property and work with a bit on the trails and we agreed when he bought the hay and feed for it. So anyway we rode the horse a bunch and he soon became an amazingly calm, gentle, and willing horse. Even my 7 year old sister rode him on the trails! Then the guy took the horse back and apparently rode it hard and then gave it to some kids who didn't know much about horses and riding and he got picked on by the other horses they had.
A few days ago we heard the horse was up for sale and since my sister had liked it so much before and we had been looking for a trail horse for her we bought him and brought him back to our home. We were a little hesitant at first and knew he would have a few quirks, but he seemed like his old self and we thought that with some good riding he'd be the same way he was. Then today I rode him with my family on his first trail ride since he got back on the same trails he had ridden on before with the same horses he knew...but, the horse has changed severly and has much more than a quirks! He tried to buck me off several times, reared, pulled against the bit, ignored my cues, jigged, and he ran into trees and pinned me against them! It shocked the heck out of me!, because I had ridden this horse before and he was an absolute angel!
My interpretation of the horse's problems was that he had lost trust and respect for people. So I was going to start some excessive ground work training using some of Clinton Anderson's methods focusing on gaining control and respect. Does that sound good for a start? I was also thinking he may have some injuries from being ruffed-up so I was going to have him checked over and assess the equipment he was being used with and i'm going to change his bit back to the one we rode him with before. Also no i'm not a very experienced horseman, but I want to be and I want to learn myself so hiring someone to train the horse for me will not be an option. My family and I will be training the horse and I would just like some opinions and advice...