Mare Cow-Kicked Me! - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 04:04 AM Thread Starter
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Mare Cow-Kicked Me!

On Monday I was out grooming the horses (I have a 9 year old gelding and a 20 year old mare) and as I was getting at the remaining shabby winter fur on my mare's rump, she cow-kicked me right in the pubic bone....which is now a lovely shade of purple!

I got this mare last fall, and we have never really "clicked," which I know is most likely my fault for not taking more time to gain her respect. She is a very moody girl - she kicks my gelding probably 2 or 3 times a week (that I see!) during feeding time. She can be hard to catch at times and just has an overall "please leave me alone" attitude. I bought her because she is basically dead-broke, and anyone can ride her, which is what I was after - a husband-safe horse.

Now, however, I am nervous to be around her. I am not really "afraid" of her...but I would prefer not to be kicked anymore, and any suggestions on what to do to discipline that behavior would be great. Also, besides lunging, what exercises can I do with her on the ground to gain respect from her? Should I be concerned about her kicking my gelding? He's 16hh and she's about 14.2hh.

Thanks for the help!
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post #2 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 07:14 AM
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I don't have any advice but read the post just below yours. It is mine and the gelding we were thinking about has cowkicked several times while picking up the feet. You may find some good advice in that post. You can also look up old posts by doing a search for kicking. With my horse I am sure it is anxiety. Good luck
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post #3 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 08:37 AM
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Watch her out closely every time you are around, and may be it's a good idea to keep whip with you. If you catch her trying to do it go after her BADLY (yell, threaten to kick her, etc.). Usually one time is enough to teach to respect you.

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass: it's about learning to dance in the rain..."

"When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves."

"How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."
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post #4 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 09:37 AM
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She just sounds spoiled to me. Kicking your gelding just implies she is the boss and perhaps a snotty boss or trying to teach him space manners. With you she could use a good kick back = spoiled/knows she can try to get away with saying no either old habit or something she's decided with you. I would "set her up" to kick and let her have it (yell, give her a good whap or two and chase her off and around the paddock for a few minutes) Let her know that is a no-no.
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post #5 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 11:58 AM
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Did you do anything to her when she showed you so much disrespect? She should have thought she was lucky to be alive after a stunt like that.

First of all, if you did not have a halter and lead on her -- never do that again. Now that you know how little she respects you, you need to put a stiff rope halter with a long lead on her EVERY time you touch her.

She needs to be severely punished any time she even gives you a dirty look. I suspect that she has laid her ears back and shook her head at you more than once. Get after her -- big time -- any time she even gives you a dirty look.

She is a very dominant mare. [I know this because she also runs your gelding around.] So, you must take extra steps to assure that she knows you are the dominant one in your herd of two --- you and her.

Appropriate discipline can take the form of hitting her 2 or 3 times with the lead-rope or jerking the lead hard and making her back up several steps. DO NOT just 'peck' at her or just scold her. If you want to make her safe for you and others to be around, you have to punish her effectively enough that she does not want repeat the behavior. When you just 'peck' on a horse, they frequently get much meaner and wait for a chance to 'straighten YOU out' and show you once and for all that she is the boss.

I have been sent many horses that have charged, struck or 'attacked' their owners. Some have seriously hurt people. Most of these horses started out just kicking or biting their owner and were only 'pecked' at or barely scolded and that turned them into truly aggressive attacking horses.

Do it right and you only have to do it once.
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post #6 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice everyone! I didn't do anything right after it happened because all I wanted to do was get the heck outta there and make sure I wasn't broken in half! I don't even really remember what I was thinking or what I did or how I did it for the 30 seconds or so right after it happened...I probably just ducked and ran and swore a lot...:) I will definitely do the things you guys suggested. I'm just afraid now that I know you don't have to be standing behind them to get kicked...It makes me think she's going to try it again now that she got away with it.
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post #7 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 03:52 PM
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That is what normally happens, at least in my experience. They hurt you being bad, and you cannot correct them, since you hurt! So, now have to wait until it happens again....I would say set her up, also. But, I would caution you-if she did this on the crossties last time....and you really go after her (what I say is that they need to think that their life will end for 3 seconds, then it is over-immediate, HUGE, and short, then move on) you need to make sure that you have a lead on her and have a hold of it. The last thing you need is for her to break the crossties, run, slip, etc, and then you will have another problem on your hands. This is why, frankly I rarely use crossties. I always ground tie. Just my way, and they always have a lead on. Many times, if there is ANY question, I have it over my arm going about my business. It also can be used to whap them with if necessary.

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post #8 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 04:31 PM
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I have a mare like that only difference is she is 3yrs old. She hasnt kick at me yet but I get after her when she throws her butt out. She was kicking my yearling a lot without warning her so I got after her anytime I saw the behavior & now she will lay hr ears & throw her head instead of kicking the baby.

Getting after for me means yelling throwing my arms out & making her move away from where she wants to be, then allowing her to come to me, touching her between the eyes & letting her go back. It can take up to 15-20 min the first time but she wilk realize you mean business & it will get easier..
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post #9 of 11 Old 05-18-2011, 04:35 PM
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I have to say....if I get kicked in my vajay jay.... I wouldnt be able to react to correct either! A way to get over your fear of her is say loud & firm as you are approaching her "This is MY yard/barn/ whatever you want. IM the BOSS!"
Even if you don't feel it saying it can help give you coffendience! It has worked for myself & others I know. Good luck!!!
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post #10 of 11 Old 05-19-2011, 03:15 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks again for all of the help! I have become more and more excited (more like less discouraged) the more I watch videos on ground manners and gaining your horse's respect. I am excited to get my horses to that point someday and hopefully never have a bruised vajayjay again! :)
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