How do I stop him biting the leadrope?

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How do I stop him biting the leadrope?

This is a discussion on How do I stop him biting the leadrope? within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Horse bites lead rope and me
  • Horses who try to bite while being walked on leadrope

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    02-19-2011, 12:27 AM
Green Broke
How do I stop him biting the leadrope?

Ok so my new horse is the kind of playful, get bored easy type. When I groom and prepare him for riding he bites the leadrope and he has been doing it more and more. He just either grabs it and holds onto it or grabs it and and pulls and this has resulted in him untieing himself a couple of times. He looks very proud of himself when he's done. I've thought of just tapping him on the nose but he is a bit funny with people putting there hands on his face so I don't want to make that worse. I normally just kind of growl at him no if I see him before he has hold of it and he will most times stop or I push his face away if the "growling" doesn't work. He unties himself when I am at his hindquarters or something and haven't seen him grab it. I have a feeling it is turning into a game for him though (he has only done it three times that I've had him tied up) but I want to try and stop it and I don't think what I'm doing is working. He's almost like a really mouthy yearling almost anything he can get his mouth on he will try. I'm don't know a lot about his past but I heard he was spoilt by a previous owner.
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    02-19-2011, 12:33 AM
I would personally give him a smack. My horse bit the lead rope once, I gave him a smack on the shoulder combined with an aggressive sounding "HEY!" and he hasn't done it since.
    02-19-2011, 12:35 AM
Firstly desensitize the horse to you putting your hands in it's face. Very good thing to do.

2ndly whenever he bites it (i personally wouldn't do anything, but it's never been a problem for me) give him a tap on the nose. Not a weak tap that he won't respond too, but use no more force than completely necessary to get the job done. Try be as weak and nice as you can, while getting the job done.
    02-19-2011, 12:41 AM
Green Broke
I'll have a go at tapping him on the nose. He's better with his face then what he originally was, it was mainly around his ears he would flinch and pull back. He almost never does that now with me unless he's being silly. I have tapped him on the nose before when he tried to nip at me it just meant I took two steps back with being able to touch his face for awhile.
    02-19-2011, 02:28 AM
I don't find it a big issue but if it does become one, or he starts getting more mouthy, you can take the lead rope and push it further into his mouth to kind of gag him. Make having the rope in his mouth feel icky. He will try despereately to spit it out.
    02-19-2011, 02:30 AM
PS, If you your horse tries to really nip you, I wouln't TAP him on the face. I'd go momentarily ballistic. I will NOT tolerate biting. I would smack him on the nose or whereeve, I am not choosey and make a bit noise and wave your arms and make him think he's going to die, for aobut 3 seconds then stop. Do nothing. Let him soak on it and go right back to what you were doing.
    02-19-2011, 09:21 PM
Green Broke
^^ I don't tolerate biting I really get up them if they bite at a person. His isn't aggressive its more a curious snuffling that turns into lipping then nipping. As soon as he started I got up him. Now he doesn't any further then snuffling.
    02-20-2011, 02:38 PM
What you can do is make it into more of a game. So, if he wants the leadrope, you give him the leadrope. If he has it in his mouth grab the rope on either side of his face and move it back and fourth. I would suggest not tying him up, because it would be really hard to do this. But just keep the rope in your hand and make him stand there. My gelding used to always do that, even when lunging and just walking around. Every time he would have the rope in his mouth I'd shove it in his mouth, and move it back and fourth. If he backed up, I did too. I just did it for a few moments, then stopped and went back to what I was doing like nothing happened. He'd usually get sort of confused, like "what just happened?" Now he just tries to eat dirt. -.- Always something with those horses who just can't stand still.

My horse bites like that, too. He wiggles his lip on you, then licks and wiggles, then maybe if he gets far enough he just chomp on you. XD He's sort of a captain obvious.
    02-21-2011, 06:57 PM
I wish there was a horsey pacifier for those babies that have to have SOMETHING in there mouth all the time! (NO a bit doesn't work) I have actually tied my lead rope to the halter in a way that there was a piece poking up so he could mouth that while we walked and it helped. I think I need to tie it that way again. Sometimes I wonder if he will ever stop being so mouthy!
    02-21-2011, 07:10 PM
Soda does this a ton. He chews on lead ropes, reins, etc. He was also very face shy when I got him.

The first thing I did was tie him so he cannot untie himself. Still a quick release if need be, but remove that problem from the equation.

Second, I worked on the face shyness. Touched his face a lot. Found out he dislikes brushes but loves my hand rubbing between his eyes and now his ears.

Third. When he starts chewing I say "NO" firmly and pull said object out of his mouth. I've noticed a major improvement with this method.

I would not "smack" his mouth at all until the head shy issue is resolved.

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