How tough is it to start a "blank slate" horse?
 
 

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How tough is it to start a "blank slate" horse?

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    10-14-2010, 08:38 PM
  #1
Weanling
How tough is it to start a "blank slate" horse?

A few horses I've looked into haven't even been started hence they are very cheap. But on the flip side...No one has abused them, bullied them or taught them bad habits yet. SOoooo they are pretty much blank slates.
My question is, if you get a youngster who learns to trust you, is willing and has a pretty mellow attitude, how tough is it to saddle bride and start them? I've saddled my mustang mare when she was younger...but I WOULD NEVER bridle her and get on because there's something that just radiates from her that I don't trust.
I mean, would I just ruin a horse? I'm just curious what the opinions will be.
     
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    10-14-2010, 08:45 PM
  #2
Foal
It's tough, just because a horse hasn't been abuse ddoesn't mean it's not going to go crazy when you hop on it, and backing a horse is very different from makign friends with it on the ground, unless you really know what you're doing, have the proper facilities, skills and confidence I wouldn't do it.
     
    10-14-2010, 09:26 PM
  #3
Yearling
Trust does go a long way. "blank slate" horses, or ones that have not had lots of handling or no bad past experiences are often easier to work with because they don't have anything that needs to be "undone."
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    10-14-2010, 10:09 PM
  #4
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redial    
it's tough, just because a horse hasn't been abuse doesn't mean it's not going to go crazy when you hop on it, and backing a horse is very different from making friends with it on the ground, unless you really know what you're doing, have the proper facilities, skills and confidence I wouldn't do it.
Exactly. Riding a few broke horses over the last few years doesn't qualify a person to start a blank slate. If you are interested in learning how to start horses, then I suggest getting many years learning to ride well on good horses and then visiting with a trainer about becoming an apprentice so that you could have someone with experience right there to show you and give you pointers. A horse can be started under saddle by an inexperienced person, but it almost always ends up badly. Either one or both of them get hurt or the horse ends up with some sometimes serious behavioral issues or training gaps.
     
    10-14-2010, 11:32 PM
  #5
Trained
I'd say if you can't handle your other horse, it's probably best not to look into getting another one. Unhandled doesn't mean easy. They may not blow at all, they may only blow a little, or they may blow a LOT. There is no way to know until you take the plunge and get on. In my honest opinion, if you already have a horse that is too much for you to even bridle, you should steer clear of unhandled horses.
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    10-15-2010, 06:41 AM
  #6
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by smrobs    
If you are interested in learning how to start horses, then I suggest getting many years learning to ride well on good horses and then visiting with a trainer about becoming an apprentice so that you could have someone with experience right there to show you and give you pointers.
I agree. Even with 'blank slate' horses, the range of dispositions and behaviors is so great that having the knowledge necessary to know what approach/methods to use with a particular horse comes only with experience.
To answer your question, though, yes...some start very easily and quickly, many do not, and you won't know for sure before hand regardless of how willing/trusting the horse appears to be on the ground.
     
    10-15-2010, 10:30 AM
  #7
Yearling
I do not really understand the great desire to be a bronc rider.
There are enough that are out of work already.

If you want to get it out of your system why don't you go to work for one of them for a summer and see how very tough it really is.

People are reporting injuries on this and other forums every day and that is happening in many cases from horses that have already been started.

Buy health insurance for sure.
     
    10-15-2010, 12:17 PM
  #8
Weanling
It does depend greatly on the disposition of the horse that it bought. However, I am training two blank slate horses and have really enjoyed it. It wasn't my choice, if you have read my other threads you would know, it is complicated. These horses are Rocky Mountains and they are easy to handle. We had a lot of 'manners' issues to work out, but as soon as that was sorted out we have really learned a lot together. I have never trained a horse before, at any level. At the same time however I know when to seek help for others and I know what I am NOT capable of. I wouldn't automatically assume that you can't to it. And I think that it is unfair for others to say that since you can't bridle your horse you shouldn't train. I think that you are wise to know what you can and can't do. If you are wise enough to make that decision then maybe you are wise enough to know the right "blank-slate" horse to get.
     
    10-15-2010, 12:17 PM
  #9
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by poultrygirl    
A few horses I've looked into haven't even been started hence they are very cheap. But on the flip side...No one has abused them, bullied them or taught them bad habits yet. SOoooo they are pretty much blank slates.
My question is, if you get a youngster who learns to trust you, is willing and has a pretty mellow attitude, how tough is it to saddle bride and start them? I've saddled my mustang mare when she was younger...but I WOULD NEVER bridle her and get on because there's something that just radiates from her that I don't trust.
I mean, would I just ruin a horse? I'm just curious what the opinions will be.
The old timers say:

GREEN + GREEN = BLACK AND BLUE

That means a green horse that has little to no training (no training in this case) and a green rider (a rider that has little to no experience with training a young horse) will almost always result in the horse getting hurt, the rider getting hurt, or both.

From the way you have written your post, it sounds like you are very inexperienced when it comes to training a horse to ride. If that is the case, I strongly recommend you to NOT try to do it yourself. While I do believe a blank-slate horse is easier to work with than an already-started horse because you get to start from scratch and train the horse the right way, I also believe that it is very easy for someone like you to ruin that blank-slate horse and/or teach them very bad manners even though you don't mean to or don't intend to.

It is the lack of experience and lack of knowledge that will cause you to inadvertantly make mistakes when training this horse from the ground up. It is much more complicated that throwing on a saddle, climbing aboard, and hoping they decide not to buck. It takes a long time of ground training, teaching respect and discipline, sacking out, giving to pressure, and so many more things before you ever even think about getting into the saddle for the first time.

My advice to you would be to buy a horse that is older, experienced, and been-there done-that. You do not sound at all ready to buy a young inexperiences green horse.

However, if this is something you want to learn, start making contacts in your area. Find out who the good trainers are in your area, make an introduction, and ask them if you can tag along. Some may want you to pay, as you are technically going to be taking "lessons' from them in training. But some may let you follow along for free, for the sake of learning.

Regardless, it is best you see first-hand how a good trainer takes on a young horse, rather than you trying to black and blue bruise it through yourself.
     
    10-15-2010, 12:48 PM
  #10
Green Broke
Its very very tough.

I'm currently trying to brake my coloured 3 yearold. I have vast amounts of experiance with older horses and problem horses but he is the first blank slate I've ever had.

He is a lovely, affectionate and intellegent pony who is quite quiet in general. So far he has dislocated my shoulder when I tried to teach him to lead through a gate, given me a lovely hoof shaped bruise on my leg when I taught him to lunge, landed me on my back more times then I care to remember whilst trying to long rein him (he has a thing about me passing anything over his withers or behind his back legs). Unfortunatly when he jumps away from something that scares him he tends to jump towards or ontop of me (sort of a ohhh you'll protect me type reaction).
We are getting there, slowly, but it is not easy. Very very rewarding when you convince them that it isnt going to hurt them (I cried when we made a brake through with the lunging. He now does very well at lunging in a roller and sidereins).
     

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