Kicks when attempting to mount him - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 01-01-2009, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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Kicks when attempting to mount him

My 6-year old stallion started developing this habit of refusing to be mounted. He attempts to kick when his dressage trainer attempts to mount him, the trainer isn't someone who uses aggression, and is very patient, so I don't understand why he refuses to be ridden.

Once finally mounted, he behaves well, but the main problem is mounting -- this habit started about a month ago.

Any idea what could be the reason? and more importantly, how to overcome it?
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post #2 of 12 Old 01-01-2009, 03:32 PM
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His saddle probably doesn't fit. If you are 100% absolutely sure it fits, he could have some other sort of pain (ill fitting bit/bridle, sore limbs, in need of chiro/massage, etc.) If it's not pain it could be a fear issue. Does the trainer have soft hands, seat, legs, aids, etc? Does she kick him or land on his back with a "thump" when she mounts? So many reasons!
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post #3 of 12 Old 01-01-2009, 03:56 PM
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Also, maybe the trainer is accidentally hitting him with his foot or hand or crop or something when mounting? Does your horse do this for anyone that mounts? Maybe he had a scare/injury that is now making him nervous? Regardless of the reason though, he does need to learn that kicking won't be tolerated. It's a two fold operation -- 1. find out why and 2. stop the behavior.
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post #4 of 12 Old 01-01-2009, 08:25 PM
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Check that his saddle fits properly and then if that is not a problem then is she using a mounting block or is she standardly mounting from the ground? He may not appreciate his back being pulled on. Have someone hold him if neither of those seem to be the problem. If he continues bucking then you may have something wrong with the girth. Some dressage saddles have uncomfortable girths that pinch when moved a certain way.
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post #5 of 12 Old 01-03-2009, 08:43 PM
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Is it a disrespect or a pain problem? You should figure that out first. If it's pain then eliminate the cause of the pain. If it's disrespect do more ground work so he knows that when you get on him he can't state his opinion. He should allow you to ride him.
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post #6 of 12 Old 01-04-2009, 01:26 AM Thread Starter
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mlkarel2010, it probably is a disrespect problem.
I haven't changed the saddle, nor the girth. And even though he's sensitive to the foot and has a soft mouth, his trainer handles that very well: he rides him sensitively and is verrrryyy patient with him.

I experiment yesterday with something:

He wouldn't let someone ride him in front of the stables (the riding line), so the trainer mounts him inside the box, which could be very dangerous, but once he's out for his work, the trainer dismounts and mounts again, and the horse has no problem with being mounted in an empty place with no other horses or distractions.

I understand that stallions are easily distracted, but I don't think this should be an issue when it comes to riding him. What should I do to get over this hurdle?
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post #7 of 12 Old 01-04-2009, 10:31 AM
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Interesting problem. I have never heard of that happening before. I honestly don't know what I would do in this situation. If you have ruled out a tack issue I would just try to correct his behavior as he does it. Him being a stud they tend to have their own specific behaviors that differ from the rest of the horse population so who knows what his reseasoning is for behaving that way BUT it needs to be corrected ASAP before more things start to arise.
It might sound bad, but what about carrying a crop with you when you mount and giving him a reminder he can't do that as soon as he does it. Might be enough to stop him?

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post #8 of 12 Old 01-04-2009, 11:34 AM
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I had an arab that did this to me years ago. I can't remember exactly how it went away. I remember I used to put her against the fence and turn her head towards me while I mounted. If the head is towards you it's alot harder to get a good aim because of the balance issue. I don't remember how I fixed it. It may have just went away after time. I'm not being much help... I remember the problem though and for me it was not ill fitting tack or injury, it was complete disrespect.

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post #9 of 12 Old 01-04-2009, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by banoota View Post
<snip> but once he's out for his work, the trainer dismounts and mounts again, and the horse has no problem with being mounted in an empty place with no other horses or distractions.<snip>
Well, it doesn't seem to be pain or discomfort, so it's either fear or disrespect. Either way it's not acceptable. If he's scared he's going to have to find another way to tell you. I say it's time for discipline, but in my experience with kicking, the discipline has to happen as soon as the weight is shifted and BEFORE the foot leaves the ground.
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post #10 of 12 Old 01-05-2009, 02:55 PM
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Try riding him when there is no one else in the riding area. See if he misbehaves then.
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