My gelding has Pissy Mare Syndrome - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 11-11-2009, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Gallant, Alabama
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My gelding has Pissy Mare Syndrome

I have a problem...

My gelding suffers from PMS.

I rode today with two friends and two family members... the two friends came over wanting to ride because they're younger (9 and 12) and didn't have anything to do. My cousins (10 and 13) got permission to ride from their mum and dad... so we set off.

I rode my gelding.
My eldest cousin rode her mothers mare.
Her younger sister rode my friends brothers mare.
My two friends doubled up on my mare.

And my gelding decided to act like a 'Pissy Mare'.

It's not really an unusual problem... he's always been just fine riding with my mare (his dam) but with any other horse, even his pasture-mates, he gets... well... pissy... aggressive... and attempts to kick and bite and pins his ears badly when one of the other horses besides my mare comes near him. Because of this, I really don't like riding him in groups... though he's gotten much better lately. Used to, he would act aggressive towards his other pasture-mates, but recently it's stopped and he's stopped acting aggressive towards my other friends horses...

We've ridden with my friends brothers mare a few times now, and he's always been fairly well behaving... a little ear-pinning, but not to the extreme he was doing today.

Today, he was just fine with my cousins mothers mare and my mare, but nearly every time the other mare inched anywhere near to him, his ears pinned and his head arched and he would act like he was going to try and turn his butt to kick or he's try to bite... and not just nips... he was going all out.

When we would trot or canter, he was fine... but at a walk, he acted like... well, it's just hard to describe...

I don't understand it... he's been fine with this mare the other few times she's been ridden... except for a few ear-pinnings... but I get after him good for stuff like that. He's knows what he's doing is wrong, yet he still does it.

When we ride in groups, I feel like I need to keep him at the back for safety reasons, but it's kinda hard when I've trained him to be a 'lead horse' and he thinks his place is at the front, or near the front. He listens well, but it's like he's just unhappy to be at the back... but with him at the front of a group, if the wrong horse gets behind him, he kicks.

My boy isn't the herd leader in the pasture... he's right below my mare, who is the 'second in command'... we have seven horses in the pasture, so he's right in the middle. His 'buddy' is my mare, yet neither of them are buddy or herd sour.

What can I do? I can't reprimand him for it when we're just leading the horses along, because then he's just fine and behaves perfectly. My neighbor, who has bred, raised, and trained horses for years said that it seems like my gelding is trying to 'protect' me, as he's watched the way he is... he said it looked like he didn't want any other horse besides my mare getting near me when I was on his back... but that can't fly, because I'm wanting to eventually ride in parades and stuff with my gelding, and I ride in groups of at least two or three 'strange horses' (horses my gelding isn't pastured with) about three times a month or so.

I didn't ride any differently today than we've been doing... nothing much was different... the 'strange' mare is in heat, and kept peeing all the time and winking, but she was doing that last time we rode and he didn't act this bad... He tried to kick once, but missed, and I got on to him really fiercely... but I was more concerned with his trying to bite, because, like I said, it wasn't just little nips... if he'd have got the other mare, he could have bitten through flesh and drawn blood... he was acting really aggressive towards her about half of the time... but not with the other two mares.

Horseshoe Loop Farm: Home of Gypsie (22 y/o TWH mare), Dakota (10 y/o TWH gelding), Codie (18 y/o Walkaloosa gelding) & Harlow (9 y/o APHA mare)
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post #2 of 10 Old 11-11-2009, 11:09 PM
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Ive seen alot of horses act weird like this...we had a mare at camp turn around and act like a stud...litterally pulled a little girl off the ground and tried to mount another mare...not pretty...

Ive also seen a LOT of studs act like you described...and they were just being studdy pain in the neck brats...even after getting onto them they still acted this way...

Ive also had my gelding turn into a mare...yes it is true...he adopted the yearling he is pastured with and became mommy...I swear if he had a tit he would have tried to nurse her...and she had been weaned since 4 months lol Every time I went to ride him he would nah and she would nah and when I got back they would run up to each other and he would snif her head to tail... very odd...

Your gelding almost seems like hes acting somewhere between studdy and mare-ish... I know mares act like studs due to hormone imbalances and studs get studdy due to their hormones... So I would say hormones BUT is it even possible for a gelding to have hormone problems?

Anywho I dont have a real good answer....but maybe this will help some... good luck with him :)

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post #3 of 10 Old 11-11-2009, 11:13 PM
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Location: Florida
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It's probably him trying to tell the other horse he's in charge and that she shouldn't mess with him. Some horses are insecure that way, especially if they aren't alpha in their own herd. Just ask the other person to do approach and retreat with her horse....approach and when your horse gets tense ask the person to back off some, wait until your horse is calm and have your friend re-approach. Sometimes a soft rub from the rider can calm a horse and make the situation more pleasent. If he knows you are okay with the other horse, that helps.
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post #4 of 10 Old 11-11-2009, 11:24 PM
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It really is " My rider can't make me behave syndrome". I have stallions and mares and I guarantee youu that none of them act like that. I can use my stallion around mares and geldings and other stallions with no problem. He didn't get that way by chance. I come down on him like the wrath of god when he even acknolwedges another horse let alone kicks or bites at one. You need to up your horsemanship and give him some consequences to his behavior. If yopu think you're being too cruel then you're probably just right in this situation. I nearly got in a fist fight when someone let thier pissy mare kick me in the leg as they passed me in an arena and then blamed thier horses bad manners on her gender. It's not about the gender of the horse but the horsemanship exhibited by the rider.

There's nothing like the Rockies in the springtime... Nothing like the freedom in the air... And there ain't nothing better than draggin calves to the fire and there's nothing like the smell of burning hair. -Brenn Hill
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post #5 of 10 Old 11-11-2009, 11:46 PM
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I would say definitely get onto him for doing this. Have experienced riders on the horses that he has issues with, and everytime that he acts like that give him a consequence. I had a horse that tried to start this. I would check him with one rein and kick him at the same time. We would then work circles and ride the same way we had been again. Repeat as many times as necessary, but when your horse realizes YOU are the lead horse instead of him he will quit. I can walk out during feeding time and tell all my horses to move back and they will. They know that people are in charge, and horses quit trying to challenge other horses on rides once they have that understanding.
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post #6 of 10 Old 11-11-2009, 11:46 PM Thread Starter
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Helps a buch, guys... I thought it may have had something to do with the fact that we don't ride with other horses regularly... which, I guess that may be part of it... but I do think that I get onto him bad enough... When he even starts to pin his ears, I get after him and pop him hard on the neck, or if I'm lucky enough to have a crop or switch with me (which is rare, as I don't hardy ever carry a crop or switch) I pop him on the rear or shoulders hard. I have popped him with the reins, but I don't have that bridle anymore and the reins on my boys bridle aren't long enough to pop him hard enough to where he knows I mean business, if that makes any sense. I also get onto him verball and I've popped him between the ears a few times... he always stops for a while when I get onto him, but then a little while later, he goes and does it again. I also try to keep him in a place where he can't get around enough to kick. If he starts to, I make him turn towards the horse he's going to kick, as turning away gives him more chance to actually kick, and I get on to him verbally and physically.

My boy has challenged the herd leader of our group of horses a few times... well, quite a bit since last year... every time he gets the crap beat out of him by the leader. I've never seen him challenge my mare, though... not after she knocked him flat out on the ground last year when he tried to mess with her... and the mare I'm talking about is a 'follower', not a 'leader'.

How am I supposed to be more forceful with disciplining him? My mare never acted this way... the worse she did was bite the sides of her bit and pin her ears, but that was years ago and she doesn't do that anymore... and I don't really remember how I got her out of it, but she wasn't near as bad as my gelding. I hate that he acts this way and I'm not sure how to really 'get after' him where he actually understands that it's a 'no-no' allthe time, not just eact time he does it.

Horseshoe Loop Farm: Home of Gypsie (22 y/o TWH mare), Dakota (10 y/o TWH gelding), Codie (18 y/o Walkaloosa gelding) & Harlow (9 y/o APHA mare)
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post #7 of 10 Old 11-12-2009, 09:41 AM
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Maybe he is proud cut? Or maybe you need to teach him submission? My gelding is almost three. I work John Lyons Round Pen Reasoning with him all the time and get him to acknowledge and submit to me. When he submits to me, he is so much more willing to submit to other horses, and isn't aggressive at all. If he is pushy, I do it, then have a wonderful ride. But some days, I don't have to do that and it is still a wonderful ride.

I don't know, I hope that helps =]

Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin' it back. -- Unkown
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post #8 of 10 Old 11-12-2009, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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I don't think he's proud cut... but is there any way to tell without getting a vet out to... I don't even know how they tell... Lol.

Horseshoe Loop Farm: Home of Gypsie (22 y/o TWH mare), Dakota (10 y/o TWH gelding), Codie (18 y/o Walkaloosa gelding) & Harlow (9 y/o APHA mare)
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post #9 of 10 Old 11-12-2009, 10:34 AM
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Hrm... Well what I do with Soda is make his ass work when he starts doing that crap. He doesn't do it very often anymore even with strange horses. You know the drill: circles, transitions, serpentines, etc. Basically he gets to relax when he is behaving himself. He starts pinning his ears and snarling, I put him to work. He figured it out quick. Soda can be very nasty and aggressive. His nickname for awhile was "Jaws", so I understand what dealing with this can be like.

Basically as far as I'm concerned I'm the boss when I'm around him. If I say he needs to get along with other horses, then he needs to. Period. And if he doesn't well then I'm going to make life not as nice. I don't smack him or anything (no need really) I just put him to work and seeing as how he's a lazy boy at heart he figures out that when he walks NICELY with the others he gets to relax. When he gets pissy life sucks.

I will say he did get smacked once. I was riding next to a friend and he went after her horse... unfortunately my friend's knee was in the same area. We both smacked him at the same time and I caught him with my rein... and then he worked.
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post #10 of 10 Old 11-12-2009, 10:49 AM
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You need to get his attention on you and not the other horses. When he does act up...make him think his world is about to end...another thing you can do...beings horses are herd animals they do 'want' to be with the other when he acts up...take him away from the other horses. Make him work HARD and then return to the group...if he does it again...bring him away again and work him hard again! Then return...he will soon learn that getting along and riding nice will be much more enjoyable than being a jerk. Make sure you give him alot of praise when he is acting like a good boy. Stop him and reward him. Then carry HAVE to stay consistant with him. Also, try to ride in a group more often Im sure if you do this you will soon be riding with the group with no problems JMO
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