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My horse refuses to canter while lunging

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  • Will horses with hock issues canter free

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    03-13-2013, 10:17 AM
  #11
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by gambler2007    
Have you tried lunging him on a line?
Yes I'd lunge him on a line and make him an offer he couldn't refuse;)
Provided all is well with the tack fit, feet, and his overall soundness and condition:)
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    03-13-2013, 10:53 AM
  #12
Yearling
I've known horses not to canter on the lungeline because the circle is too small for them to balance themselves. When their balance improves, they'll pick up the canter willingly.

I've also known horses not to canter while free lunging because the more distance you put between you and the horse, the more static you'll get. Think of it like a soupcan telephone. The longer the distance, the more muffled your communication will be. Also, if he's further away then he can get away with not listening to you since you can't reinforce it as easily.
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    03-13-2013, 01:21 PM
  #13
Started
If he bucked when asked to canter while mounted and won't pick up a canter willingly while loose I'd be very concerned there is a pain issue here.
If you can call a vet or chiropractor - or both in one would be best ;) They will check over the horse and find any soreness or discomfort. Usually I'd say tack issue - but I'm assuming you're lunging him without tack?
     
    03-13-2013, 06:17 PM
  #14
Foal
He spooked at something, I lost my balance and out of instinct grabbed the reins tightly (I know, shame on me) which just upset him more and he started bucking and that's when I fell.

We havent had the vet out yet this year, but from the way he races up and down the field with the other horses, I don't think pain is the issue. I'll be sure to recheck his tack once the weather permits some riding.

Copperhead, thanks for the insight, I hadn't thought of that. I'll defiantly trying lunging him with the line. Thanks everyone :)
     
    03-13-2013, 06:24 PM
  #15
Trained
[QUOTE=BugABooStreak;

We havent had the vet out yet this year, but from the way he races up and down the field with the other horses, I don't think pain is the issue.[/QUOTE]

The thing is, running around in the field and cantering around in a (relatively) small circle are two different things. My old gelding was severely arthritic in his hocks (he's now 10 and his right hock is completely fused, while his left hock is 75% fused). He could run around and buck like a colt in the turnout, but put him in the round pen or on a line and ask for a canter without letting him warm up, and he just physically couldn't do it (he'd try, bless his heart, but he'd give up after a few strides because it hurt...once he warmed up, he could canter with no problems).
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    03-13-2013, 06:33 PM
  #16
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by DraftyAiresMum    
The thing is, running around in the field and cantering around in a (relatively) small circle are two different things. My old gelding was severely arthritic in his hocks (he's now 10 and his right hock is completely fused, while his left hock is 75% fused). He could run around and buck like a colt in the turnout, but put him in the round pen or on a line and ask for a canter without letting him warm up, and he just physically couldn't do it (he'd try, bless his heart, but he'd give up after a few strides because it hurt...once he warmed up, he could canter with no problems).
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Awww poor thing :( I never thought arthritis could be an issue since he is only 4, I'll defiantly have to ask the vet about that when he comes out. Hope your gelding is doing ok.
     
    03-13-2013, 06:50 PM
  #17
Trained
Not saying arthritis is the issue with your boy. Was just using my gelding as an example to show that even if they're fine in turnout, they may have pain while lunging because they are two different actions.

Another example. My friend rescued a 6yo TB straight off the track. He was fine when turned out, running and playing. Yet he would come up dead lame if lunged or ridden. My friend finally had the vet out and the horse was diagnosed with a poorly-healed hip fracture. He's now a pasture ornament.

My old gelding is a fat pasture ornament now. He went back to his old owners (long story) who used him as a trail horse once a week for a very light rider and the rides lasted no more than an hour. All because they couldn't wait to start him as a hunter horse until his growth plates had fused (they started him as a 3yo over 2ft fences).
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    03-13-2013, 09:02 PM
  #18
Foal
Thank you for your help. I will certainly look into that.
     

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