My Horse does not like being the STALL - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 08-15-2009, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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My Horse does not like being the STALL

My horse does not like the stall at all she paces and paws and looking for the other horses. My question is how do fix this problem. do I leave her in the stall for a few hours or a few days. I feed her in there, she won't eat because she is looking for the other horses. she is so herd bound. WHAT do I do.
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post #2 of 10 Old 08-16-2009, 11:25 AM
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Does she behave similarly if she's left behind outside? Is she quieter in the stall of there are other horses in the barn? Some horses are really herd bound, and others have no problems that way but are really anxious and uncomfortable in a stall situation. It sounds like yours is more herd bound.

To tackle the herd-bound problem, I would work her close to her "buddies," where she wants to be. Lunge her if you can, or ride her, just keep her feet moving fairly energetically. When she is focused on you and responding to your requests, trot her to the barn and put her in the stall, and let her rest there. You can pet her, talk to her, calm her, but if she would rather be with the other horses, cool. Pull her out of the stall and take her where she wants to be, then work, rest in the stall. In the stall, you can have hay and water available to her and allow her to eat or drink if she wants, whatever she wants to do to be comfortable. She'll eventually learn that it's a lot more work to be with her buddies than it is to be by herself. When she's at least somewhat calm away from her buds, I would say start feeding her regular meals away from the other horses.

You can start by just resting outside and away from her "buddies" if she's really giving you trouble. This method also is helpful for trailer loading (work outside, rest inside).

I hope that was somewhat helpful, good luck!

A stubborn horse walks behind you, an impatient one in front of you, but a noble companion walks beside you ~ Unknown
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post #3 of 10 Old 08-16-2009, 08:32 PM
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Is she in the barn all by herself? I don't know too many horses who wouldn't get nervous in that situation.
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post #4 of 10 Old 08-16-2009, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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Yes she is so herd bound. she can see the other horses.
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post #5 of 10 Old 08-16-2009, 11:04 PM
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If she doesn't like being in a stall, then she doesn't like being in a stall. I have had TB's like that, and were much, much happier being left outside.

Leave her outside, that's what she wants. Don't force it. She is trying to tell you something, so listen.

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post #6 of 10 Old 08-17-2009, 07:48 PM
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Being stalled is another unnatural thing we ask of horses, just like being tied or being alone, and you approach it the same way, practice, patience, and time. Many lesson horses are brought from the pasture in the morning, stalled all day (except for lessons), and turned out in the evening, and they just become used to the routine.

I agree with MIEventer...if she doesn't need to be stalled, why do it? (our mares are out 24x7).

On the sixth day, God created the Quarter Horse.
On the seventh day, he Painted the good ones.
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post #7 of 10 Old 08-18-2009, 10:18 AM
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Can you keep other horse in the next stall? I think it's the only way to go. Personally I don't think she gonna stop all that if you don't have her buddies nearby. My horses love their stalls but they always go together (except when my paint was sick, so I kept her in stall locked, but I let my other horse in/out her stall freely and she was in for the most time).
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post #8 of 10 Old 08-19-2009, 04:24 AM
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If she is happier out then leave her out. I agree with MIEventer. Its much more natural for her to be in a paddock.
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post #9 of 10 Old 08-19-2009, 08:32 AM
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Why do you want her in the stall? Are you hoping to use the stall to cure the herd bound issue or are there other reasons you feel she needs to be stalled?
Honestly, the fact that she can see her herdmates is likely to contribute to her being more agitated, not calmed - they are out there and she is in here, why would that do anything to settle her? Barring putting a companion in a stall next to her (where they can actually interact vs. seeing them a ways off), I would suggest no contact better than the limited view she has now if you are wanting her to settle. Or, you could look at why she is so unhappy in the stall and devise a new plan to address the issue you have with her herd bound nature that you can both be happier with.
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post #10 of 10 Old 08-21-2009, 03:04 PM
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Leaving an unwilling horse in a stall is a good way to have her pick up vices. Try what ScoutRider said, but if she still gets anxious in the barn, don't force her. Happy horses are much nicer than unhappy ones. :)
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