how to train yearling - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 01:29 AM Thread Starter
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Post how to train yearling

Hello all,
I git two yearlings. My first horses ever. My dream finally came I just gotta work hard on making my dream successful!
I have a quarter horse and a Tennessee walker, both very skiddish, seems like they haven't been handled ever before. I'm a big believer in taking time in things and doing them the nice way. But....where do I start? They ain't let me even touch them! They do come up to me and eat grain out of my hand but that's about it! People say once I get them castrated they will be mire calm and won't be as scared? Any advise on how to start training them/ get them used to being "handled"? I do take about 2 hours out if the day and just sit in the pasture or talk to them, let them sniff me...etc and so forth....
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post #2 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 02:20 AM
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Have you had horses before?

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post #3 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 02:23 AM
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You are in for a very long haul buying 2 unhandled yearlings for your first horse experience. Handling and training a yearling is no small or easy commitment, they are much more challenging than an older horse that has already been at least partway trained.

The best thing I can suggest is that you find a trainer to work with you and the yearlings. There are so many things with training a horse that are so easy to screw up that it's not something you really want to try to figure out on your own without some hands-on help.
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post #4 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 02:33 AM
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So I just re-read and noticed that I missed the first line. Well done Kayty :S

I must agree with smrobs, you would be well advised to get in contact with a good trainer. Left to your own devices, with little to no knowledge of how to work with a young horse, both you and the yearlings may end up injured or troubled for life.
The first few years of a horses life are so important to be handled correctly.
I purchased my first weanling last year, after having ridden for nearly 20 years and having owned multiple horses, working for trainers, getting instruction from the very best coaches and having experience working in a stud environment. And you know what? I am STILL nervous, about wrecking my young horse. I am constantly running my ideas and progress by a friend/trainer/breaker that I deeply respect, to keep me on the right track. Make one mistake now, and in 5 years time when I'm trying to have this horse ready to be out competing, that mistake will come back and bite me on the bum.

Please get some help - that is all I can suggest

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post #5 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 02:34 AM
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I have a yearling also he is a cutie ...right now I am working on ground work with him he is a stud colt for now lol he is getting gelded soon but not studly at all you are doing good by going and spending time with them and letting them get used to you for sure get a trainer to help you out and a lot of re search helps also
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 02:40 AM
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Please find a trainer before you get yourself killed.....

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
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post #7 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 02:41 AM
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Kayty, me too. I've been riding my entire life and I am quickly closing on 30. I finally got to handle a foal almost 3 years ago when Rafe was born. Then a year later, I "inherited" the neighbor's 3 month old colt. After the two of them, I will never purposefully get another horse under the age of 2. It has taken so much more work just to keep them respectful than it does to finish a 3 year old out LOL.

All that orneriness is really cute when they are 3 weeks old and weigh about 80 pounds. Not so cute when they stand 16 hands and weigh 1400 .
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post #8 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 03:18 AM
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Originally Posted by smrobs View Post
I will never purposefully get another horse under the age of 2.
Wow, that's exactly how I feel! I keep thinking it must be just me and I am a dunce or something! Because people always talk about how "rewarding" it is working with young horses. Um, that hasn't been my experience!

I am hoping that a few years from now I can look back and laugh at all I've been through with my mischievous gelding, but right now I honestly feel that I will never purposely own any untrained horse ever again. My nerves just can't take it. I'm 35 years old and have had horse since I was around 17. But I have never trained anything before and my first foal has been VERY tough. Like crying almost every day tough! I do tend to cry easily, but in contrast my adult horses never bring me anything but total happiness. They can almost do no wrong. So contrast that with a horse that frustrates me to tears nearly every day.

The only thing that keeps me hanging on is that he was born here and I feel responsible for him. If I give him up I will always wonder what happened to him. And I do believe he has the potential to be a good horse or I would not torture myself. Only one more year before I can send him out for saddle breaking. That is my goal- to raise him to the point of sending him out for training.

In the future I will just save myself the grief and buy a horse that is broke to ride. It would be much cheaper and less frustrating not matter what the cost compared to feeding a horse for 3 years and trying to do all the groundwork yourself, praying for the day you can ship him out to someone to saddle break. Paying $550-$1000 a month for training. Hoping it will be worth it in the end and I will end up with a rideable, abiet very green horse that won't kill me. All that money and grief when I could probably buy a rideable horse at this very moment for $500-$600. I love him and I want to see it through. But is it worth it? When you can buy a broke horse for next to nothing? The only thing that keeps me hanging on is that I love him.

I'm glad there are folks out there who can train or there would be no rideable horses. But if I have learned anything it is that I am NOT a horse trainer. I wanted to be. But I just don't have it in me.

So that's my story. I keep hearing how "rewarding" young horses are. Hopefully you will have better luck than me.
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post #9 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 03:57 AM
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Everyone is very correct. Hopefully you can get a trainer it makes all the difference in knowing what to do and what not to do!

Also a tip, if you want to treat them/feed them do so out of a bucket as for some horses feeding them out of your hand can encourage some horses to bite especially colts.
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Last edited by CurlyIsASpecialStandie; 03-17-2012 at 04:01 AM.
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post #10 of 13 Old 03-17-2012, 04:02 AM
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I have been extremely lucky with Billy, I bought him at 8 months, he hadn't had a huge amount of handling, but what he did have was very good - he was very respectful to people who handled him.
He learns very quickly - which could certainly go bad if I am not careful with keeping on top of him. I am really enjoying working with him - but smrobs you are so right in that it is a lot more work keeping them in line compared to something over 3 - they are ALWAYS testing, pushing those boundaries and you have so much less margin for error.

I am definitely finding it rewarding, but as I said, I got very lucky having such a well mannered, easy going youngster. Though we have yet to reach the 'terrible twos' so I'm not going to get complacent!

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