I'm going to punch this horse in the face. - Page 2

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I'm going to punch this horse in the face.

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    10-16-2008, 07:57 AM
Originally Posted by creepalurkin    
SonnyWimps: I won't be giving him any more treats by hand,
Each to his own on that, but it's not what reinforcement you use but when & what you reinforce with it as to causing bad manners. If the bad behaviour isn't directly associated at the time with food, then it isn't related anyway.

now anyway. I feel I deserve some respect from him. I've never done anything for him to not trust me or anything like that.
But he obviously thinks the same - he deserves it from you. I believe respect to be a two way street - you need to have respect for someone in order to earn it from them. It can be a hard nut to crack with many horses. I agree sounds like a good trainer, instructor, mentor...

He's only 4yo, so is at a big have fun, test boundaries stage. From what you've said, it sounds like it's more of a leftbrained, conscious kind of affair - more related to confident, dominant types. But you also say he's headshy and he could be fearful and reacting about more than you think. That of course would make a difference in the way you might handle things.

Another question: When I was working him in the roundpen after he kicked me and after he was pretty tired, he basically stopped listeing to me, no matter how much I cracked the whip. Any tips for that? I even swatted his butt with it and that got him going but then ten steps later he had his head back over the rail....
Perhaps you are one who continues to crack the whip, wave the stick, whatever, and your horse is becoming desensitised to it? Perhaps he was just fed up too, decided to again assert himself. Perhaps he was becoming confused & worried about what you wanted.
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    10-16-2008, 09:24 AM
I suggest no more round pen for awhile. You need to control this horse's head at all times with either a leadrope or a pair of reins--no liberty work or even work on a longe line. You don't want to give him a chance to build up a head of steam. He needs to learn to calm down. Sounds like a horse that needs sacking out. Saddle him and tie him to the hitching post or a strong tree for a few hours every day. Do something else around the barn or the place, sit and read or whatever, if you have to, just to be sure he doesn't get hurt. But teach him to stand still and be patient.

For a horse like this who is a bit spazzy and disrespectful, you need to be nothing but all business for awhile. Catch him, tie him up, groom him, ride him, groom him, put him away. That's it--control his head every minute that you are with him.

The tying up would help, too--do it safely, not too long or short, and tie him to something sturdy. But make him stand around a for a few hours until he understands that you control his actions, and he must wait for you.
    10-16-2008, 11:00 AM
You posted on the 8th of this month that you could NOT get your horse to pick up his front feet for picking.

Now he's being oddly aggressive during exercise.

I think the signs are pointing to injury/soreness. He may have tweaked something that's not visible to you through a limp...but never the less is hurting him.

Try to figure out which leg is perhaps ouchie or maybe warm. You said he would not pick up his right front AT ALL for picking... so, it's either the right he doesn't want you fiddling with or the left that he doesn't want to support all his weight on.

Since he wanted to change direction in the round pen without permission perhaps he was hurting? Which direction were you moving in? Which leg was leading? Which side had the most strain on it?

I think your horse deserves the benefit of the doubt here and you need to stop and take a good look at him, checking for warmth and any other issues you may not see right off.

I believe he's telling you he's hurting, now you have the hard part trying to figure out where.

Horses don't lie.
    10-16-2008, 11:11 AM
I think Dumas Girl may be right--when Arrow's having lameness issues, he won't turn into the leg that hurts or longe one way, either!
    10-16-2008, 11:11 AM
Originally Posted by creepalurkin    
SonnyWimps: I won't be giving him any more treats by hand, that's for sure. He's four years old. And I saw no signs of him about to kick me. One minute he was happily grazing and then next he spooked or something and kicked me as he was taking off.

Steph: that's a good idea since I'm too nervous to ride that booger right now anyway. I feel I deserve some respect from him. I've never done anything for him to not trust me or anything like that.

FehrGroundRanch: I think I'm going to ask the guy who owns the little place I keep him at to work with him, he already said he would.

Tuffy'sTreatMan: Okay this is what happened when he attemptd to kick me in the round pen while we were free-lounging. He was just trotting along the rail and decided he wanted to change directions without me telling him to. So I blocked where he wanted to run and snapped the lounge whip on the ground (like I always do) to tell him to go back the other way and when he turned back around he kicked up at me and I could definitely tell it was a kick at me and not just in the air... which he's never done anyway just because I tell him to go back the way he was supposed to. Nothing different has really happened this week different than usual... just hanging out, brushing him lots, playin' with him, stuff like that.

When he see's me coming up to his run, he'll walk up to me just fine and when I go to get him from the pasture, he sometimes walks up to me or sometimes I just walk up to him but he never runs from me. He's four years old.

Lol I was just kidding, I'd never punch him in the face, he's headshy enough as it is.

Do you think maybe it's the weather? It's been chilly the last couple of days... but still, I've never seen him act like this and he isn't showing any signs of illness.

Another question: When I was working him in the roundpen after he kicked me and after he was pretty tired, he basically stopped listeing to me, no matter how much I cracked the whip. Any tips for that? I even swatted his butt with it and that got him going but then ten steps later he had his head back over the rail....
Maybe the reason why he kicked you was because he spooked suddenly and needed to get away?
    10-16-2008, 11:37 AM
There are a lot of things that I agree with here. I would definitely have him checked out for pain. I would be getting a good exam done to make sure nothing is wrong.

I, too, beleive respect is a two way street. And IMO respect is not showing a horse who is boss. Respect is appropriate response to pressure. I have to respect my horse's nature....to be a prey animal and to fly from fear, to be perceptive to people, places, changes and things, to be grugarious. I have to respect his thoughts, feelings and opinions otherwise I am just being a dictator. At the same time he needs to respect my space. He needs to know that I am alpha in this herd of two, but I need to show this to him in a way that he understands and goes along with the nature of the prey animal in order for him to accept and respect it.

I would stop with the round pen work. IMO round penning has ruined more horses than it's helped because people just go in there and run the horse around, sometimes "teaching it a lesson." Horses live in the moment, they don't associate round penning with an action they did several minutes ago. If you are going to correct a horse it has to happen IMMEDIATELY otherwise you lost your chance.

It sounds like when he spooked he wasn't trying to kick you. Spooking is a fear response so I don't think he intentionally kicked you.

As for in the round pen, this horse is only 4. His play drive is probably very big so the biting may have been him trying to play with you or dominate you. But the biting may have been provoked...what were you doing when he bit you? Horses ALWAYS give signs they are about to kick, bite, strike, etc. You just have to know what to look for. Just remember a horse can't bite you if he's not close to you I'd be teaching this horse to back up on-line while I keep my feet still. Get him out of your space. The kicking out could be he was just playing or because you were too strong with your correction. The correction may not have been fair and he told you so by kicking out. Or it could be that he was saying, "I don't wanna!" and throwing a little tantrum. If a horse throws a tantrum like that when I'm working with them I just ignore it. I just say, "That was pretty but please do what I asked." If he does, great, if he doesn't I'll do something about it. But throwing a tantrum like that is not respect....he's not responding appropriately to whatever pressure I put on him so it's my job to fix it, not punish him for his opinion.
    10-16-2008, 11:41 AM
Wow I am soo soo sorry that this happened. I know its a serious confidence shatterer for your horse to kick out at you as well as very hurtful since most people care very very much about their horses.

Id continue to work with him as normal. Increase his load a little more maybe, really work him into a legitimate sweat and get him moving out and burning energy. Eventually I recommend riding him. He's got to know that even though its a partnership, you're the boss...

This has never happened to me so im not sure what to tell you, I've only had one horse

But I wish you the best of luck with him
    10-16-2008, 11:55 AM
Firstly, let me say good for you for going to get him and them working in the round pen even after he kicked you. I know what it feels like, unimaginable pain, along with the strange sensation that half the muscles were taken out of your leg, making it limp and weak.
It sound like your horse suddenly has more energy and is getting in trouble, testing you. A feed change can do this, and cooler weather can definitely do this. Not to mention that he's just four. I think horses can have the terrible twos, when they begin their training, and then the terrible fours, after they are used to their training and pretty much know what they can/can't do, they try to rock the boat, see if they really have to do what you say.
    10-16-2008, 01:00 PM
Wild feathers, that's what I thought too. But, with the recent refusal to pick up his front hooves ( which are typically easier to pick up) I think there may be other non-visible pain issues involved.

I whole-hearted-ly agree that a 4 yo can be a pain in the rear tho. Kinda reminds me of my 12 yo daughter. Knows most of what she'll ever need to know...but still too young to get it right! Not to mention the "I'm not a baby anymore" & "I'll show you who's boss" issues.
    10-16-2008, 06:15 PM
I DO show this horse respect. I always have. He trys to switch directions either way we're going around the round pen. I think he just needs an attitude adjustment.

He is now for sale.

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