How to train for a sell-able horse? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-24-2011, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Central Indiana
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How to train for a sell-able horse?

I have talked a bit about our mare, Splash, on here. For reference sake, she is an OTTB, 18 years old, 17 hands. She was raced until 1999 and then used as a broodmare (had some very nice babies from what I have researched). She is very healthy.

Splash was given to me about a month ago. The people who had her didn't like her and said they were going to put her down. Splash has been a sweetheart since we got her. She is a bit shy but doesn't argue about anything you do with her. I had her hooves trimmed yesterday and she fell asleep.

I had tacked her up and she couldn't have cared less. I used a western saddle. She did mouth the bit quite a bit (a sweet iron snaffle) but we have since figured out that she was just not used to having a bit in her mouth. It has been 12 years since she was ridden!

A trainer friend came Sunday to work with her. We wanted to see what she knew. She started out by longing her, Splash had not a clue how to do it. Mouthed the bit a lot less and, again, the saddle did not bother her.

She stood stock still when mounted and moved of readily. Trainer friend said she has a very soft mouth. She said she would compare her to a green broke horse. She knows nothing but to give her head right and left and she had a solid whoa. Doesn't mind leg pressure but doesn't know what it means, knows nothing about neck reining.

So we are thinking of trying to work with her to be a trail horse. Nothing phases her, I was leading her the other day and a rabbit jumped from the grass and ran in front of us. She just looked at it and walked on. Tarps, ropes, respects fence.

What would she need to know for me to re-home her as a solid trail horse? I can really see this mare being kid safe and bomb proof. She is so eager to please and wants to do what you ask if you just show her what you want.
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-24-2011, 10:28 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Oregon
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I'd definitely do desensitizing work with her, sounds like she's got the tarp down but what about plastic bags, dogs, car horns, etc? You need to train her to go over/through water & small logs easily, and of course make sure she is good with other horses as many people like to go together. It's also important that she loads well since people often haul their horses to trails.

Not very helpful I know and I'm sorry, I'm doing hw and read your post and had a brief thought about it :) Good luck!
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post #3 of 6 Old 01-24-2011, 10:33 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Central Indiana
Posts: 219
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Oh good one about the obstacles, cars ect. She loads and trailers great.

I will make a list of obstacles. There is a plastic bag right by their pen gate and she ignores it.

BO brought a round bale in my pen with a tractor, she moved out of the way but didn't act upset.
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post #4 of 6 Old 01-26-2011, 01:44 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Central Indiana
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Any other suggestions? This is a really nice mare but I don't plan to keep her. She is too big for me. lol
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post #5 of 6 Old 01-26-2011, 02:19 PM
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Pretty much anything you can think of can be used to desensitized. I go to the dollar store and get balloons and tie them around the arena, sometimes I ride carrying them. Flags, feed bags (noisy ones-let them blow in the wind sometimes), sacks filled with cans to drag, rub on them, I even have my guy have them on his back-he walks, they fall off. A ball to roll at them ,throw at them, other animals like minis, cows, goats...mailboxes-open, close....noisemakers from New years, I even rub them on my guy while they are making noise once he is used to them....late in the season now, but those giant inflateables from the holidays, .use your imagination....the possibilities are endless!

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post #6 of 6 Old 01-27-2011, 03:44 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Oregon
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Another idea:

LOTS of trail horses (maybe and hopefully not Splash, since she's older) have a tendency to take off when they know they're getting close to home. It's important to make sure your horse knows that just because she's home doesn't mean she's "done". If she ever exhibits behaviors like that, ride or lunge her in the arena or even take her back out on the trails in 5 minutes -- just so she gets that just because you go back doesn't necessarily mean she's done... that will keep her from developing such a bad habit.
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