Leads - Page 2

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This is a discussion on Leads within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

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    10-13-2008, 05:06 PM
From all that has been said, it sounds like a physical issue to me. Have you had a chiropractor work on him? What about massage? That would be my first course of action. My warmblood could not pick up a correct lead when I first got him, not even when I free lunged him. I had the chiro. Out and his back was really screwed up, which was my feeling. He's had a couple adjustments and now he's doing ten times better.

Also, I would have his teeth checked. But not by a vet. Nothing against vets but they have no idea what they are doing inside the mouth. They spend one to two days learning about the mouth and that's it. An equine dentist is better. One thing that could be going on is your pony may not have a lot of contact on his molars. For a horse to know where his body is in relation to time and space, his molars must have contact. About 70% of the horse's perception happens in the TMJ and if the molars don't have enough contact the horse won't be able to tell what his body is doing. My warmblood has this issue. He had been over floated so he doesn't have the molar contact he should and the dentist said he isn't surprised that his canter seems "off." In my words, it's like he doesn't know what his body is doing sometimes, like how he carries himself or the shape of his body. That's because his TMJ is off, but thankfully he's only 7 so this will change. The dentist told me that in 6 months I should see a big change. Your pony may have also been over floated, he may have bit seats, his incissor angle might be completely screwed up....so many things could be going on. But not every equine dentist is created equal. The guy we use is certified by Spencer LaFlure and is also an instructor of Spencer's. Spencer has a completely different way of doing teeth, starting with the incissors first and not the molars. This has made massive changes in all of our horses and all of our friend's horses who Mike (the dentist) has floated. No one else will ever float our horse's teeth. I would highly suggest getting one of Spencer's people out to look at your horse.
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    10-13-2008, 05:51 PM
Sounds like nearly everything has been tried already with this boy- but have you tried leg yielding in trot for it?
IE: Trot on a 20m circle on the right rein, slowly bring it in to as small as he can handle comfortable (ie 10, 12m), then leg yield back out on to the larger circle. Do it a couple of times, then as you are leg yielding out, ask for the canter. He SHOULD pick it up on the right lead, as he's already bent around your inside leg. Then again, sounds as though he can pick up the left lead no matter what so may not be that simple! Give it a go though- was the only way I got my OTTB to pick up the right lead after always preferring the left.
It's going to feel tremendously unbalanced though!
    10-13-2008, 08:39 PM

I had a pony like this... not quite as perisitent though!

You could try trotting him in the smallest circle he can maintain, then ask for the canter. The second he canter relaease the circle. If the circle is amll enough, it should be impossible, or at leats very very difficult for him to pick up the wrong lead. Make sure you open up the circle as soon as he picks up the correct lead, as he will be very unbalanced on it due to avoiding it for so long!

Another trick I used it to bend him around a pole/barrell at the trot, and halfway through the (tight) turn, ask for the canter. Again it works off the principle that on such a small circle and such exagerated inside flexion it should be near impossible for him to pick up the wrong lead. If he is lazy, maybe carry a whip to make sure ha takes the canter at the right point during the turn.

Another thing I make sure I do is only use my outisde leg to cue the canter... it makes it very clear to the horse which lead you are asking for... Eventually, anyway!

Hope this helps!
    10-13-2008, 11:16 PM
Green Broke
Well seeing that he just coliced about 3 hours ago and now I must stay up all night to watch him. I didn't get a chance to work with him. But im telling you, its nothing physical, we have had his teeth checked by a equine dentist. Seeing as it takes more then half the ring to get him to canter WITH pretty heavy duty spurs. I don't know what to do
    10-13-2008, 11:22 PM
Oh no is he okay? I hope he recovers... colic sucks...

I was just thinking of something else though- do you jump him, and if so, does he canter after the jumps usually? Could always try hooking a sharp right turn a few times after a jump and seeing if he picks up the lead that way!
    10-13-2008, 11:26 PM
Green Broke
I don't jump him, but he used to be a jumping pony for ponyclub. But sadly, I have tried that, and he still managed to avoid it by stumbling.
    10-13-2008, 11:29 PM
Wow what a determined little horse! I guess at any rate he's probably good at counter canter lol. I'm out of ideas :(
    10-13-2008, 11:36 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by .Delete.    
Well seeing that he just coliced about 3 hours ago and now I must stay up all night to watch him. I didn't get a chance to work with him. But im telling you, its nothing physical, we have had his teeth checked by a equine dentist. Seeing as it takes more then half the ring to get him to canter WITH pretty heavy duty spurs. I don't know what to do
he knew you were going to fix him. Smart pony!

Hope he pulls through A-Ok.
    10-13-2008, 11:38 PM
I use to have the same problem with my horse believe it or not I did alot of trot work and got him really balanced don't ask for the canter until you can feel his hind end straight with his front end don't let him swing either one out to the inside or outside. Maybe try spurs to make a very clear signal! Don't give up it took me 2 years and I had my first hunter show the other day and we got all our leads and got grand champion in out division hard work always pays off oh and one other thing try lunging in side reins it works wonders to getting your horse balanced and working from behind! Hope it helps keep us posted!
    10-13-2008, 11:46 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by sonnysfirststar    
maybe try spurs to make a very clear signal!
I use spurs.

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