Today I finally think I've figured out what my foster's major issue is on the ground: she has NO concept of moving forward beyond the simple "poll pressure from the halter=forward".
And since I've never "installed" one before, I figured I'd ask you guys first.
She's great in the halter, moves off very little pressure when any is needed, etc. This week we've also cemented a great backup in the halter - very smooth and relaxed.
I've also been working with her on moving over/forward when she's poked in certain areas of her body. She's a little pissy about that sometimes but she's learning quickly and the pissiness is turning out to just be her way of expressing confusion.
Anyway, the problems really start when I try to get her to move forward any time I'm not leading her. I can wave my arms in a "sending" sort of way and she'll just repeatedly flinch, and not budge an inch. I can "bite" her on the patootie with the end of the lead rope and she'll just tuck her butt, no forward movement. I can snap a lunge whip near her butt and again, she'll tuck her butt and/or flinch with no forward movement.
I've tried tapping her with the lead rope and the only thing that gets a forward reaction is if I really snap her with it (otherwise she just keeps flinching and tucking). Then, she basically bolts forward, trots half a circle around me and starts shoving her shoulder into my bubble. Then it just escalates from there - if I try using the lunge whip to get her out of my bubble, she just acts like she's going to climb on top of me. If I snap the line she does that whole "throwing her head in the air with a 'threat' of upward momentum" thing. She hasn't followed through with any threats yet but I really want to avoid pushing her that far since I'm pretty sure that is just something she learned at her previous home that she'll give up on once she learns appropriate responses to pressure.
Anyway, I think the real problem here is that she doesn't know what forward pressure means.
So basically, how do you teach a horse that pressure on her patootie=forward?
She was an orphan, if that makes any difference. I'm pretty sure that is she had ever been bossed around but another horse she might have a better idea of this...too bad she was never with a bossy horse...