I need HELP >.< - Page 3

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I need HELP >.<

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    09-14-2012, 11:14 PM
Ok - I'm going to, yet again, ignore the slighted insults, and carry on. How, aside from tying to a tree. Would you go about teaching a horse that you are a strong leader. And how have I played into her whim? I have never EVER let her get away with not going through the gate when I ask. She has ALWAYS gotten as far as I have asked of her in the end. I have NEVER let her win any battle, so I don't know how I reinforced her fear - but I'd love to be told! I'd love to know how I can be a better leader for my horse! Step by step method would be great.

As for chasing vs. hazing. When she first moved to our new house she was afraid of her stall and wouldn't go in. I lead her to it and tried to make her go through. After hours of doing everything I described in my OP she still wouldn't go in. But I wasn't going to let her win, I had my fiance go into her stall and stand behind her stall door and hold her lead rope as strong as he could. I went out - her whole body was tense, her tail was tucked a good 6 inches into her bum, she was trembling all over - but I wasn't going to let her win. I pushed her and commanded "walk on", she just trembled and was as hard as a rock and soaked in sweat from me working her butt off. But she was afraid of her stall. Yes you're right, she does talk herself into being afraid. But how am I to show her there's nothing to fear if she won't trust me? How am I to build her trust? I finally had to whack her butt with another rope. Nothing. She just trembled, couldn't get away, couldn't go forward. I continued whacking her and pushing her until she finally just jumped into her stall. I slammed the door shut behind her and left her in for 2 days. Now she loves her stall. What MORE can I do than that?!

If I were to try the same approach, out in the open, where there was no stall door to protect my fiance (who is NOT a horse person) she would have killed one of us. What more can I do? Please tell me what better I can do? I have got her yielding to every pressure I ever apply at the slightest amount. I don't even need to touch her I just step into her space and wiggle my fingers and she's moving away. What more can I do? Please tell me what to do and how I want to know. But trying to 'haze' her out to a tree will get us killed.
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    09-14-2012, 11:19 PM
Can you take the paddock fence down?
Then there would be no paddock.
    09-14-2012, 11:22 PM
Rookie- thanks for the vote of confidence, you're right, going into it with the right attitude is important. Even if I'm acting confident I was certainly thinking "maybe I shouldn't try today" "it's not going to end well" and half way through "I should give up but I can't" and allll those thoughts that I'm sure she was picking up on no matter how hard I tried to push them down.

You're right she is NOT confident at all, she is definitely not alpha mare even in her herd of 1. I'm trying so hard to be the confident handler she needs, but I just don't know how to do better than what I have been. None of the trainers I hired really did either.
You're right about her learning she could break her halters, I've also known a horse who broke his neck being hard tied, so I'm extra wary.

As soon as I have someone who can handle my pony outside (he's fine, I just need someone who can get him out of the way if my mare does something) I'm going to try that. It won't hurt :P
You're right too about breaking it into small bits. Today we got most of her out the gate, next time I'm hoping to get her fully out the gate. The next time to the dumpster, next past it, and so on.
    09-14-2012, 11:22 PM
Green Broke
PunksTank, I'm just wondering if you have access to portable corral panels? If you had say 140 or 150 running feet worth you could put a corral at her gate, let her move her in to that on her own; then when she's comfortable move the corral a few feet further away and in a different location, etc. The reason I am suggesting this is that she almost sounds like she's got the equine equivalent of human agoraphobia. (And I don't think anyone will dispute this) She evidently has a very small comfort zone; so this may be a way to start increasing it without risk of life and limb to all involved.

I think it was Celeste that suggested following of the pony - also a good way to kick start ventures into the world.

Finally, don't give up. You have to extinquish this behaviour of hers and replace it with one you want. That takes persistence and patience in great great doses. Behaviours and habits (no matter what their basis) can be incredibly resilient (just ask someone who's trying to quit smoking or lose weight) but they can eventually be squashed. May be you have to go through this performance another 20 times and come the 21st time she's good to go.

Take care and good luck.
    09-14-2012, 11:24 PM
Celeste, We're renting so I don't think so. But where was that line of thought going? Out front is a busy road that I'd be afraid of. I'd also be afraid because the neighbors have a stallion. If she did decide to venture out xD If I owned the property it might have been a good idea to just fence the whole property with one big fence you're right, that would have been a great idea.
    09-14-2012, 11:25 PM
I remember an older horseman that was a mentor to me when I was young saying that once a horse does something 20 times, they will do it well.
    09-14-2012, 11:27 PM
Originally Posted by PunksTank    
Celeste, We're renting so I don't think so. But where was that line of thought going? Out front is a busy road that I'd be afraid of. I'd also be afraid because the neighbors have a stallion. If she did decide to venture out xD If I owned the property it might have been a good idea to just fence the whole property with one big fence you're right, that would have been a great idea.
Well I was hoping that the paddock led out into a big pasture.
    09-14-2012, 11:28 PM
Thanks that's encouraging. No I don't have portable panels, but there's also no room to really put them the way it's designed is:
The barn is a big square, her paddock is connected to the side of the barn (indoor/outdoor) and then there's a paddock behind hers, which I wanted to open up to make her one really big one but there are black walnut trees in there, so that paddock's off limits. Then there's two more paddocks paralel to the one behind hers, so her gate is right between the back of the barn and the pony's paddock which is kitty-corner to her paddock. So it's a fairly thin path. Plenty wide for a dumpster and a hay truck, but there's also a ledge for the dumpster, so not a place I could put a corral. XD Sorry for the novel!
    09-14-2012, 11:30 PM
Celeste - I wish!! That'd be perfect! It does lead out to a hay field - not mine but the owners don't mind me walking my pony around the edge. I couldn't ever let her just be loose out there though, and there are too many dangerous things like barbed wire fences and cars and tractors between us and them.
    09-14-2012, 11:32 PM
Ok. Here's the plan. First you need to win the lottery. Then, buy a huge ranch with giant fields. No paddocks. :)

Oh, and don't forget to send a few million my way.........

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