How young is your horse when you start training? - Page 3
 
 

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How young is your horse when you start training?

This is a discussion on How young is your horse when you start training? within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Cob has wobblers syndrome

 
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    11-25-2010, 09:17 PM
  #21
Trained
Very good point about complacency Kiwi! So important to remember these are large and instinctively reactive prey animals we're dealing with, no matter how tame. You can trust any horse 100%.... to be and act like a horse!

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwigirl    
I like to let them have a good fight of a rope which inevitably they lose; .... What I aim for is that resistance is futile. ....
The other thing that I think is that you have to work very hard to get the respect of a horse that may have viewed you as a play mate. I believe that you have to be the right type of person to change the nature of the relationship you have already established.
I disagree with allowing a foal to fight being tied mainly because of the possibility(it's not rare) of injury to immature necks. It can cause joint, bone & tendon issues, and has also been associated with 'wobblers syndrome' and other nervous/spinal issues.

I personally don't like to break horses with learned helplessness. I don't want them to learn resistance is futile(which can come undone in an instant if the horse finds some shred of hope), but that they can trust their handler to look after them and become confident that there is no reason to resist. I feel that teaching with non-confrontational ways of training where possible, avoiding or minimising causing fear & reactions in the first place is best.

Yes, I agree that if you train a horse effectively in one manner, then at whatever point decide to change the rules, that makes life difficult. But what's wrong with teaching them consistently from day 1? My perception of the term 'respect' seems different to yours(it's such a subjective word) too and being perceived as a 'play mate' is very much a part of establishing a 'respectful' relationship IMO. I don't ever want to lose that.
     
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    11-25-2010, 11:43 PM
  #22
Yearling
When I talked about fighting a rope I did not mean hog tying or anything like that. I meant using the appropriate halter and using advance/retreat methods, playing a game of tug of war. I have never tied a foal up in my life, I haven't needed to because I don't believe it necessary to handle them much so for me tying up is a later in life lesson.

At the moment I am watching a friend of mine who has bought two young gypsy cobs. She has had horses all her life but has never brought on a young horse. The pair of geldings are appx 18 months old and have been very well handled from dot, they have absolutely no fear of people and it shows. I am watching her go out into the paddock with the two and get mobbed, pushed around and once nearly kicked playfully, I watch her retreating from them again and again because they are so in her face. All the time I'm watching this I'm thinking this is not going to end well. She is already on the back foot.

In my opinion (so take it with a grain of salt) there is nothing that can be achieved with a foal/young horse that can not be achieved with an older animal. Infact with an older horse you have a little more maturity and life experience to aid the endeavor. The problem that is most commonly run into is that people believe that the process will be so much easier and will occur by attrition if they start the foal from dot. It is forgotten that it takes the same level of experience to train a foal as it does to train a horse full grown. Also I think that with an older horse you can see if there are any holes in your training immediately - getting bucked off is a pretty good clue. Whereas with a foal that is incorrectly handled the problem may not be obviously apparent for quite some time. So the reason behind my point of view is that I don't think I am a good enough horse woman to muck around with a foal from day one. I am happy with an older horse that I can make quick progress on. I know that there are people who are excellent at handling foals and can bring the degree of consistency foals need but I don't think there are as many as you think. I think that it is important to question motives of people wanting to start breaking/training horses by getting a foal, if a person believes that it is guaranteed to be easy and risk free to train a foal then that person doesn't have the experience required to train any horse. I hope I am making some sort of sense here, I'm not sure if I am getting my point across.
     
    11-26-2010, 01:33 AM
  #23
Trained
Agree with what you say Kiwi. Obviously mostly just the way it came across to me first time. The written word, huh? Easy to misunderstand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwigirl    
In my opinion (so take it with a grain of salt)
Ha ha ha, and don't we all have enough of those! Yep, even without misunderstandings, IMO most things are down to difference of opinions, rarely 'facts' so I hope you take my disagreements respectfully, as that's how they're mean - I hope I come across as discussing or debating, not arguing.... altho I know I don't always succeed!

Quote:
there is nothing that can be achieved with a foal/young horse that can not be achieved with an older animal.
Agreed, as I hope I got across already. Just that physically, paddock life with little exercise, especially if cushy, soft paddock life, is not great for developing healthy, sound beasts, so for that reason I like to teach them at least the basics when young.

Quote:
Also I think that with an older horse you can see if there are any holes in your training immediately - getting bucked off is a pretty good clue. Whereas with a foal that is incorrectly handled the problem may not be obviously apparent for quite some time.
Can't think of anything like that myself. What problems were you thinking of? Re getting bucked off, I tend to think of that as a 'whoops, slipped up on something previously & missed the signs'.

Quote:
So the reason behind my point of view is that I don't think I am a good enough horse woman to muck around with a foal from day one. ....degree of consistency foals need but I don't think there are as many as you think. I think that it is important to question motives of people wanting to start breaking/training horses by getting a foal, if a person believes that it is guaranteed to be easy and risk free to train a foal then that person doesn't have the experience required to train any horse.
On your later points above, yes! So true. Motives can also be... naive. I don't think it's essentially much different training a baby from scratch than training a 'grown up', excepting that a grown up may have already had a lot of practice at certain attitudes that may either help or hinder the process. IMO there are not half as many good trainers as some people think. As for your first comment above, I suspect you're mistaken. If you are confident of your ability and successful in training older horses, you're likely to be just as good at training a foal. Consistency is not just needed for babies and if I thought a person wasn't good enough to deal with a foal I wouldn't think they'd be any better at training an older horse.

One thing I do think is easier with training foals(assuming it's done well) is starting the horse under saddle later on. It's not that the foal is necessarily easier to teach, but if you start then, the horse has already had a fair few years solid training under his belt(saddle) by the time he gets to carry anyone, rather than being 'green'.
     
    11-26-2010, 03:03 AM
  #24
Green Broke
Personaly I find a smack to the nose a very good deterrant for nipping and if done correctly should not cause a horse to become head shy.
     

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horse training, natural horsemanship, training foals

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