Lunging Help/Advice Needed Please - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 06-23-2012, 12:27 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: California
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Lunging Help/Advice Needed Please

I have a fourteen year old gelding. We are actually very unaware of his breed, so we consider him a Quarter Horse (Though at times, he has the conformation of a Thoroughbred). He's 15.2 hands high, big chestnut boy. I've owned him for four years this coming July 7, and throughout that time, I've never had to lunge him. When I moved, I boarded him with some buddies who have had horses, but now that I am back and have him in my care again, his manners are down the drain. He is better on the ground finally after two weeks of refreshing his manners while leading (No longer pushes, pulls, and invades space). I have tried lunging him, and since we have no round pen available, I have to do the line lunging. He is the worst horse I've had to line lunge. Even worse than the five year old high spook, high stress Anglo-Arabian mare I had a few years back. He pulls against the line, no matter what I do. I do not have a stud chain as I've never really seen it as a necessity. What would y'all do to change this behavior so he is respectable on the line, and a joy to work with?
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post #2 of 4 Old 06-23-2012, 12:37 AM
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I would start with a small circle and get him to lunge at the walk and trot first, then gradually let him get further out as he behaves. Get him listening to your cues for walk and whoa first, then add trot, etc. If he pulls on the lead I would put him in a snaffle bit, run the lunge line through the near side of the snaffle, up over his head (following the bridle) then around down and snapped to the other side of the snaffle. That way when he pulls he is putting pressure on his head, his poll and his mouth, but can find relief by staying on the correct circle. This is what I do for my 15.3, 1100 pound mare and she stays soft on the lunge. I started on small circles just getting her to listen to voice, and now she can lunge around me at walk/trot/canter/whoa with very little if any pressure on the line.

Good luck :)

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post #3 of 4 Old 06-23-2012, 12:39 AM
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Change directions a lot and often. Don't have him go in mindless circles. Let him go one time around and change. Go half a circle and change. Don't change directions in the same place. This makes him pay attention and less likely to pull. If he does pull, don't pull back. Bump/jerk on his head.
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post #4 of 4 Old 06-23-2012, 07:50 AM
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Horse could be reacting to pain too. And it shouldn't take 2 weeks to get horse to behave while handling him on the ground either.

From that, I would suspect that his ground manners aren't top notch, and the lunging is where he is free to express that openly.

What are you feeding him, as that might have something to do with this. And you can help yourself in the lunging, if you work off corner, as that sets perimeter on at least 2 sides.

I'd also get horse in chain shank for lunging, or use snaffle bridle without reins, run one end of thin line through side closest to you, up over poll, and down to other bit ring. Will have to be switched out when you change directions. That way you have a bit more bite.

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