How do you deal with a spooky horse? - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By candandy49
  • 3 Post By themacpack
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post #1 of 7 Old 03-25-2012, 08:08 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2012
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How do you deal with a spooky horse?

I have a 4 year old gelding that Iím trying to train for barrel racing. I bought him two years ago and started him and he was really going good. But then, last summer, my cousin wanted to use him so I let him do that and he just completely ruined himÖHe was really rough on him and now that I have him back, it seems like heís a different horse. :(

My biggest issue with him is that he is now really spooky. Itís to the point where I am a little bit afraid to ride him - I have a pretty good seat so I havenít fallen off yet but itís pretty bad, he has bucked, reared, and tried to bolt with me. He is scared of EVERYTHING. I donít know what to do - I donít have an arena to ride in so I have to just ride around my farm site and he spooks at every little thing. Also, when I bought him he wasnít spooky AT ALL. Another thing he has done is when I hauled him to an indoor arena for a fun show, he FLIPPED OUT when people started clapping! Like started spinning around in circles and then flying backward as fast as he could while we were standing in a crowded warm up pen. It was so scary and embarrassing - he could have really hurt someone and I had no control over it. It didnít get better each time he heard it, either - I finally had to go put him in his stall so he wouldnít hurt anybody.

What should I do? I canít sell him; I wouldnít even make back the money I bought him for when heís acting like this. Besides that, he is/was a very nice horse before my cousin wrecked him and I think I can get him back to that point, if I could just get rid of the constant spooking. Itís really hard to ride him when Iím constantly worrying that Iím about to get bucked off, which probably doesnít really help him eitherÖI canít afford to send him to a trainer, either. This is something I need to deal with.

Thank you sooo much if you actually read this, sorry it was so long!
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post #2 of 7 Old 03-25-2012, 08:25 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Southwest Missouri
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If you can afford it look into buying enough tubular stock panels to put up a 40-50ft round pen. Take him back to doing basic ground work. It may take a while for him to get to where he was before you loaned him out.

Best Wishes for a successful outcome.
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candandy49 is offline  
post #3 of 7 Old 03-25-2012, 09:00 AM
Green Broke
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Start over - start from the ground up and work towards restoring his confidence in himself and, most importantly, in you as a leader who he can trust. That trust is what has been lost in his time with your cousin. As you build him back up, start exposing him to those things that trigger his reactions and de-sensitize him to those triggers (though, you may find, as he starts to see you as leader who can be trusted to keep him safe his reaction to the triggers themselves may lessen before you even start to work on them).
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post #4 of 7 Old 03-25-2012, 09:13 AM Thread Starter
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Ok thanks for the help!!! I do have a round pen, I just don't really know a lot of exercises to do.. What kinds of things can I do in there besides just have him go around and around?
14missmagic is offline  
post #5 of 7 Old 03-25-2012, 09:24 AM
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I agree with the others .. start over. Hee needs to learn to trust again. Search the internet, buy a book ... there are lots of methods out there!

Good luck, honey!
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post #6 of 7 Old 05-04-2012, 10:37 PM
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Wow that's too bad your cousin taught your horse not to trust. The good news is that your horse can trust again, do as these other nice people have posted and start from the beginning and build that foundation with your horse and you can have it all back again. It takes time and work but it is all worth it. It's been said that horses are just maintainence with legs and it is true. Show your horse the way! Groundwork groundwork groundwork!!
Rockabillyjen33 is offline  
post #7 of 7 Old 05-04-2012, 10:41 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Missouri
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Basic Ground Work For Horses - For the Gentle & Wild Horse

OP there is a link to get your started. How's it been going?

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
Skyseternalangel is offline  

barrel racing , help me , spooking

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