Horse very unwilling to be caught.
 
 

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Horse very unwilling to be caught.

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  • How to catch a horse that doesn't want to be caught

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    07-05-2013, 03:16 PM
  #1
Green Broke
Exclamation Horse very unwilling to be caught.

I think this tread has it's rightful place in the 'Horse Training' forum...

I have had my horse for 3.5 years now and catching him has never been a real issue, apart from the odd occasion when he can be a little cheeky being caught. However, for the part week or so, he REFUSES to come in! It has got the point where I have changed my routine because I simply do not have the time to persevere and I have only managed to get him in to ride once this week.

It hasn't got to the point where I am leaving him out all night because since he has been like this, I have managed to get him in eventually. He needs to come in at night as we do not have a lot of grass and I think if I did leave him out all night, I would never be able to catch him ever again!

I am trying to figure out why he suddenly is acting like this... I can't think of a logical reason why because when I do eventually bring him in, he is perfectly happy to be ridden and is sound in every way. He is also eating hay at night, so it's not like he doesn't get food in his stable.

Has anyone else had a perfectly well behaved horse suddenly turn like this and not be caught? Did you ever get to the bottom of what was causing it?

In the mean time, any catching techniques for a naughty horse?

Thanks

X

P.s. He put his foot through his bucket the night before last which is very out of character for him too.
     
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    07-05-2013, 03:37 PM
  #2
Super Moderator
Last years hay was mostly not very good in the UK so he might not find it as appealing as even the little amount of grass you have
If you don't already do it then always have a small tasty feed in the manger waiting for him - some sliced carrots or apples mixed with a handful of whatever you feed him
Now the flies are winding up and you're getting some warmer weather you could try keeping him in during the day and out at night - he might appreciate that more
     
    07-05-2013, 03:44 PM
  #3
Green Broke
Thank you :) I had considered stable during the day/ out at night but concerned that he will get frustrated being in during the day when there is stuff going on. I will test this theory on Monday when he has to stay in for the dentist :)

We have actually been very lucky with hay atm. We had some awful dusty stuff that I hated (so I soaked it) but of course he loved it. They hay we have now is lovely meadow hay from the small farm and really good compared to what he was eating on the livery yard I have just moved him from... But he does seem to be picking at it.. Uh, horses :P
     
    07-05-2013, 03:55 PM
  #4
Super Moderator
Sounds odd - I wonder if there's some plant in the hay that he doesn't like - some meadow hay can be a bit random at times.
Give my love to Shropshire - I lived there for a few years and really liked it.
     
    07-05-2013, 04:04 PM
  #5
Green Broke
Maybe that's it.. The hay looks normal to me but I don't have to eat it!

Awesome that you used to live here! I have just moved back here myself after living in Wales for Uni :)
     
    07-05-2013, 04:14 PM
  #6
Green Broke
My guess is that something in his routine has changed. Did this start when you moved him? Maybe he doesn't like something about the barn. Are you riding him more frequent? If you are riding him most times that he is caught, he's relating being caught to having to work. Do you catch him to just groom him or just to feed him?
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    07-05-2013, 04:57 PM
  #7
Green Broke
Well, I moved him from a livery yard at Uni back home so it is a place he is familiar with and I was riding him every day or as often as I could.

I catch him in to groom, ride and feed him and to give the paddock a rest. He is associating being caught with work but it's never really been as much as an issue as it has been lately which is what worries me. Sometimes he gets the day off - a longer groom or a hack up the road instead.

Another thing - Often, I can walk right up to him and put his head collar on fine but then he will refuse to move.
     
    07-05-2013, 05:16 PM
  #8
Weanling
It sounds as though he's beginning to associate being caught with working. Much more preferable for him to stay out all the time and keep his distance then have to possibly *gasp* work.

Time to throw on a good pair of walking shoes and walk that horse down!

Seriously head out to your paddock when you have some time to spare, enter the pasture and walk towards him with a purpose. Of course he'll turn tail and walk away but keep at it. Walk at him, keeping him moving, driving him until hr decides its in his best interest to come to you. It might take some time but it will work.

Once you've caught him a few times make it a habit to visit him without asking anything of him, give him a bit of carrot, a scratch whatever, soon he'll be once again looking forward to your presence.

You can also try keeping a break away halter on him for a bit. When I first pasture my horses in the spring they sometimes get feeling a bit free and refuse to be caught. I find that a halter on the worst offenders helps to remind them that sometimes they have to be caught.
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    07-06-2013, 04:10 AM
  #9
Green Broke
Thank you :) Do you have any advice on how to deal with a horse that will turn on me if I try to do that?
     
    07-06-2013, 04:19 PM
  #10
Green Broke
Do you mean that they turn their butt towards you? I would swing the lead rode at their butt and make them move away. Then keep walking them down. Follow them around until they stop and turn their head towards you. Then you want to turn away from them.
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