Monty Roberts: Join-up...doing it wrong? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 08:44 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2010
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Unhappy Monty Roberts: Join-up...doing it wrong?

I think I might be doing join up wrong. I already wrote to Monty Roberts two months ago (e-mail), but the preply i got was jsut to subscribe to his website.

I know when you're doing join up you have to look for the three main signals that the horse wants to be a part of your herd: head lowered, licking their lips (chewing sound), and the inside ear is on you.

But when I tell my horse to stop after 30 minutes of mayhem running, and changing directions, she doesn't act like she trusts me the way that the horses trust Monty. I think I'm doing something wrong, but i don't know what exactly. I don't face her when we stop, and I drop everything.

I need her to trust me so i can get her into the trailer.
CinnabarBoGracie is offline  
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post #2 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by CinnabarBoGracie View Post
I need her to trust me so i can get her into the trailer.Help?
If it's critical - get a trainer specializing on loading horses in trailer. If you have time just keep working on loading (there are LOTS of threads on this forum about how to load the horse) and don't care about "trust" all that much. Trust and obedience come as you work and mess with the horse.
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post #3 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 09:08 AM Thread Starter
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My dad refuses to pay any more money on a trainer- but it's a good idea, and I will keep it in mind.

She was abused, a lot, before i got her, and now she's very independent, and has no confidence.
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post #4 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 10:25 AM
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I wouldn't mess around with the join up right now. But to answer your question about if you're doing it wrong or not...just remember that it doesn't happen it the 10 mins that it looks like it happens when you watch Monty do it. It can take a few days.

You just need to spend some time with her. Don't always work her when you come to see her or else she will start to think that every time she sees you she has to work. Bring her out and let her graze a little bit while you have her on a lead, or spend a long time grooming her and makeing her feel good.

Why do you have to load her up?

- If today was your last day, and tomorrow was too late, could you say goodbye to yesterday?
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post #5 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 12:49 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2010
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Thank you so much for the feedback. I'm so glad i found this forum

I have equestrian team meets and practices. And I plan on taking her to some shows (though i know it's kinda late in the season)
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post #6 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 12:53 PM
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I've never formally joined up... but I think I've done it by coincidence a few times while free-lunging horses. After I quit chasing them, they usually come up to me and are happy to follow me around.

If she seems frenzied, it may just be that she's too distracted by worrying about other things to really focus on you.
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post #7 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 03:51 PM
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My guess is you aren't working her long enough. Some horses take five minutes, some take two hours. Wait until she's BEGGING you to stop. And she doesn't have to be galloping the whole time, you don't even have to push her into a canter, just trot her if you think she isn't in shape to canter around for an hour. You can also try changing direction more often.

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
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post #8 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
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thank you riccilove...that really makes me feel a lot better, it's nice to get the reassurance
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post #9 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 04:42 PM
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Lowered head and licking lips is not a sign of 'joining' up, it is submission.

ABUSED is the key word in your post. Horses have a memory as good as an elephant's. BE observant and try to recognize signs that will tell you how she was abused. One excellent way of beginning to obtain trust is if possible spend time with your horse {on a halter} while she grazes on grass....walking down a trail....or other passtime that will not appear to her as training, including horse grooming {scratching her on the base of the neck and withers}

NEVER ignore her by turning your back to the horse world you are acting in submission to her when you do that.

E. Allan Buck
"Ask and allow, do not demand and force"
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post #10 of 18 Old 08-12-2010, 08:29 PM
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That's the entire POINT of "join-up". Monty Roberts doesn't sugar coat it, you want the horse to feel alone and vulnerable because that's what makes him want to "join-up" with you and be submissive, to let you be the leader.

Monty Roberts almost always has a seven foot high pen with absolutely zero distractions. The horse is forced to focus on him and him only. 99% of us don't have that luxury, so it's not going to work quite the same. And a horse that's already learned NOT to submit to humans because she got hurt is going to be twice as hard.

We tried it on a wild filly and she became so frenzied, we had to stop. After 45 minutes, we'd accomplished nothing but having her soaked in sweat and scraped up on her shoulders from banging into the rails. There were to many distractions, to much to look at, other horses to call to so that she never felt alone with US - she wanted to be with the OTHER horses and was asking them to come help.

You shouldn't be turning your back to her in join-up. When she shows signs of submission, you should be doing a 3/4 turn with your shoulder dropped so that you can see her easily (and react to whatever she may do, be it to drive her on or remain inviting) and yet open yourself up to "conversation" with her - invite her into your herd, let her know you're ready to talk it over.

It's not a "miracle cure". Your girl joining up with you will not make her immediately step into a trailer. If join up is not working with her, you're better off putting all that energy into just trailer training her period. Dedicate several hours to just hanging around the trailer, sitting inside it, letting her eat some food off the back of it, lunging her behind it, all very patiently and quietly. Don't wait until you HAVE to go somewhere - put aside an entire day to just making the trailer fun!

I hope God tells her to smash her computer with a sledgehammer.

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