Horse stops and wont go on
 
 

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Horse stops and wont go on

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  • Horse stops while riding and wont go
  • Using a riding crop for a horse that tries to turn around to the barn

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    02-26-2012, 03:50 PM
  #1
Foal
Horse stops and wont go on

If I paint a picture of my riding area, real fast, it will help you understand what I'm talking about. So I have my front yard, which is a large square, a hayfield to the right (if you are standing in the yard looking towards the road) and to the left is a wooded area, across the yard is a corn/bean field.

My gelding is wonderful if we stay in the yard or go in the woods. He's wonderful in the corn field. He's wonderful if we turn right on the road. If we turn left, though, he refuses to go past the drive way. I think it's because he's started to associate that direction with long rides. When we reach the drive way, this is what happens: Part one: He just stops. He won't move at all. When I give the walk signal with my seat, progressing into squeezing, nudging, tapping with the riding crop, or "kissing" at him, we move in to Part two: horse becomes stuck in reverse. All of a sudden, instead of walking forward, he is (rather calmly) walking backwards and trying to turn around at the same time. He is not acting scared, just like "sigh, I don't want to go there, lets gooo... THAT way!"

There are a few other areas like this one, one way down the road to the right, a corner, that he refuses to go around, and another to the left at the bottom of a big hill that we go around.

Anyways, it's a regular battle and can take me 10-20 minutes of keeping him aimed to the left end of the road and lots of urging before he finally gives up and moves on, with occasional stops to argue. Once we get to the neighbors pond, he gives up until we reach the hill and tries it again, though that one usually only takes about 5 minutes.

So what I've been trying to do is getting him a short ways down the road to the left and waiting until he's given up on fighting it, and once he stops arguing about it, and walks on calmly, I end the ride and hop off, so that he can expect that it's not an entirely horrible place to go, if work ends there.

I don't want to have to end my rides out there all the time though. That probably would not be a great habit to set.

Is there a better way to handle this?
     
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    02-26-2012, 04:14 PM
  #2
Green Broke
Can you say SPURS ?
You have a barn sour horse, search, "barn sour" lots of threads on this.
All come down to either making him go or letting him go home then working his butt off on the ground, then ride out again. Any time he turns to try to head home I would let him. Soon as I got home I'd run him till his tounge was hanging out. He'll figure out it is easier to go your way.
First I would just try circles, if he turns Id keep is nose in his butt till his body is facing the right way then release, any time he tried the turn around Id repeat, spin him around a couple times, Horses generally don't like smelling their own butt so usually this will solve mild cases.
     
    02-26-2012, 04:24 PM
  #3
Green Broke
Sadly, what you have been doing in persisting until he will go a little ways and then turning him home and ending ride, is just reinforcing this, as he doesn't equate "oh I took two steps and get to go home, so this isn't all bad" as much as he does "I won, hahahahaha."

He must be made to go ahead and work, and walk on where you want him to go, instead of cutting ride short, because he did a few steps more or less.

And when he starts the backing? Turn him and make him back into the direction you wanted to go in the first place.

But don't give in to him, or trust me, he WILL begin to not want to go any direction at all. That is coming. And probably soon.

Horses do not think "9 out of 10 times when I have had to be ridden, I didn't get ridden, just caught and petted and turned loose. So I imagine this is another one of those 9 times."

Instead they bank on averages, and bank low at that. "1 time out of the last 2000 times this fool was out here, I was ridden. Well, not going to be 2nd time for sure."

When this horse balks, either be prepared to sit it out, keeping horse facing direction you want to go, and sit quietly, no talking or babying him. And don't drink a lot either before hand. Also no fooling around with friends, cell. Your mind needs to be clear and fairly empty, not worried about anything. Just sit there. Every 10 minutes or so, give horse cue to move off, if horse takes a step do not praise or pat, just ride. Patting/praising breaks horses momentum, and that you do not want.

If horse tries to spin around, turn back to correct direction and go back to sitting. This may take 30 minutes or even more. That is why it is important for horse to feel like the sitting is your idea, not his.

Also, be sure there is no other area he is challenging your leadership, feeding/leading or what have you too.

But don't give in if he only does a little of what you are wanting. You are teaching him to keep at this when you do that.
GotaDunQH likes this.
     
    02-26-2012, 04:40 PM
  #4
Yearling
^ this.....and no spurs (as suggested) but a nice dressage whip, used at your leg when you ask for forward.
herdbound likes this.
     
    02-26-2012, 04:46 PM
  #5
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salila    
If I paint a picture of my riding area, real fast, it will help you understand what I'm talking about. So I have my front yard, which is a large square, a hayfield to the right (if you are standing in the yard looking towards the road) and to the left is a wooded area, across the yard is a corn/bean field.

My gelding is wonderful if we stay in the yard or go in the woods. He's wonderful in the corn field. He's wonderful if we turn right on the road. If we turn left, though, he refuses to go past the drive way. I think it's because he's started to associate that direction with long rides. When we reach the drive way, this is what happens: Part one: He just stops. He won't move at all. When I give the walk signal with my seat, progressing into squeezing, nudging, tapping with the riding crop, or "kissing" at him, we move in to Part two: horse becomes stuck in reverse. All of a sudden, instead of walking forward, he is (rather calmly) walking backwards and trying to turn around at the same time. He is not acting scared, just like "sigh, I don't want to go there, lets gooo... THAT way!"

There are a few other areas like this one, one way down the road to the right, a corner, that he refuses to go around, and another to the left at the bottom of a big hill that we go around.

Anyways, it's a regular battle and can take me 10-20 minutes of keeping him aimed to the left end of the road and lots of urging before he finally gives up and moves on, with occasional stops to argue. Once we get to the neighbors pond, he gives up until we reach the hill and tries it again, though that one usually only takes about 5 minutes.

So what I've been trying to do is getting him a short ways down the road to the left and waiting until he's given up on fighting it, and once he stops arguing about it, and walks on calmly, I end the ride and hop off, so that he can expect that it's not an entirely horrible place to go, if work ends there.

I don't want to have to end my rides out there all the time though. That probably would not be a great habit to set.

Is there a better way to handle this?
Ok...all the stuff you are doing (and I'm not knocking you) to get him to go forward where you want....is just child's play to him, he is not taking it seriously. So, like I said in my previous post...nix that crop. Tapping it means nothing to him...it's like a pesky fly. Take a dressage whip with you and use it at your leg. If he balks and does not go forward, ask with your leg and voice....and if he does not go forward...he needs a decisive spank with that dressage whip. I don't mean you beat him with it, but a hard spank at your leg WHILE you are asking for forward with leg. Basically, this horse has your number and does not think you are going to do anything other than what you have been...which does not work. It's time for a wake up call.
herdbound likes this.
     
    02-26-2012, 05:08 PM
  #6
Foal
Thank you for all the replies. I don't have a lot of experience with riding and so prefer not to use spurs as I don't want to use them incorrectly and cause an injury.

Palomine: We do a lot of sitting. And a lot of turning circles when he decides to go the other way. I didn't think of asking him to back in the direction that I want to go, though. I will certainly give that a try (if there are no cars coming up the road.)

He does not have a problem with leading or anything else, (yet) so this is something I really want to give the boot before it gets any worse.

GotaDunQH: I do have a dressage whip and try carrying that on my next ride.
     
    02-26-2012, 05:21 PM
  #7
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salila    
Thank you for all the replies. I don't have a lot of experience with riding and so prefer not to use spurs as I don't want to use them incorrectly and cause an injury.

Palomine: We do a lot of sitting. And a lot of turning circles when he decides to go the other way. I didn't think of asking him to back in the direction that I want to go, though. I will certainly give that a try (if there are no cars coming up the road.)

He does not have a problem with leading or anything else, (yet) so this is something I really want to give the boot before it gets any worse.

GotaDunQH: I do have a dressage whip and try carrying that on my next ride.
Question...do you have an arena you work in? Or do you always ride on trails etc. Reason I ask is...you need to work on getting him to listen to you consistently, no matter where you are. As in going down the trail OR schooling in the arena. I suggest you start by schooling in the arena with the dressage whip, then end by going down the trail. Let him get a feel of that dressage whip at your leg in a more controlled environment first, before using it in an open space. See what Im saying? If you go out to ride a trail and use it (in the way you should) he may shoot forward on you, so be ready. And he SHOULD respond immediately as that is the objective, for him to be more responsive when you ask him for something.
herdbound likes this.
     
    02-26-2012, 05:28 PM
  #8
Foal
No, I wish I had an arena to work him in, but I don't. I also do not have a trailer to take him to the barn I take my lessons at (dressage lessons, at that!) but my instructor has offered to come out to give me lessons on my own horse after I have progressed a little further. (We are still working on my balance bareback.)
     
    02-26-2012, 08:10 PM
  #9
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotaDunQH    
^ this.....and no spurs (as suggested) but a nice dressage whip, used at your leg when you ask for forward.
No spurs but a whip is ok? Whats the difference? They are both tools used to magnify your leg cues. I guarantee that horse will start moving way before you cause injury. Read a bit on how to use them. You don't walk up out of the blue and run them through, neither do all spurs even have sharp areas.
Tayz likes this.
     
    02-26-2012, 08:15 PM
  #10
Trained
Joe I think the no spurs thing is because it is easier to get used to a whip. I know that my lower leg is not still enough for me to use spurs effectively, but I can still take a crop and use that fine.


OP - Don't just tap him with the crop. Put the fear into him. If he stops, ask him to walk on with a squeeze of the legs. If he doesn't move off that, ask with a kick. If that doesn't work, gather a handful of mane, and apply the crop in a way that should make him jump forward (hence the handful of mane lol). Not just a tap that he can ignore. I mean a really good whack. You won't break his bones with a crop, so don't worry about that. Refusing to listen to your leg is an issue that you need to fix, and this is one of the more effective ways to do it.
     

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