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My horse is scared of everything!

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        01-30-2013, 01:19 PM
      #11
    Trained
    I have a horse that used to be like this. For her it was geniune fear.

    I think we're too quick to write horses off as jerks, to be perfectly honest. Lots of patience and knowing when to back off and when to keep pushing will be a huge asset with this horse. I made mistakes with my girl, but in the almost 6 months I've had her, she's gone from pretty much untouchable to marching up and DEMANDING to be loved on.

    Don't get mad. Don't drive. Just follow. Horse stops, you stop, or even better, take a step back AWAY from it. Horse so much as looks away from you and you start towards it again. Stop and back away if it turns and looks.

    THREE DAYS is all it took for my girl to go from untouchable to it being possible to get a halter on her. A further two and she was reliable enough to halter to be put in a pasture. She has her days, but more often than not, now, if she's being hard to catch it's because my gelding is causing the issue [he is possessive of me, so will drive her away if he wants to be worked, and he's boss in the pasture, so if he hauls tail to try to evade work, she follows]. Can touch her everywhere, even her udder, and she's mentally ready to break. If I can keep her pasture sound til the end of next month, I'll break her and see if she stays sound as a ridden horse.

    She's still funny about having her feet done but I haven't been able to do much in that respect with her. She's had stifle issues which made it impossible for her to hold up her hind legs long enough for a trim, then put a leg through a fence and that's only just healed enough that I can start working on feet again.

    Again, my horse was utterly TERRIFIED of people, and patient persistence resulted in a marked change in a matter of days. I've also found it helpful for horses that are "just being jerks" too. They snatch their foot, you pick it up again. Maybe you growl a little bit, but that's all. Doesn't matter how many times they do it. Hard to trailer? Wait them out [that's actually how we got Magic home in the end, nothing else worked].

    Pushy brats need to be put in their place but there are plenty of horses that are more subtle and just need to learn that no matter what they do, they're not getting out of it.
         
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        01-30-2013, 01:50 PM
      #12
    Weanling
    Interesting, my first thought was how much exercise or turnout does this horse get? Such a high energy breed, and I wonder if it's nervous tension from having pent up energy. Does he ever get to get out and let loose and run?
    Sissy likes this.
         
        01-30-2013, 02:12 PM
      #13
    Showing
    Horses have better vision when looking forward and poorer vision when it comes to things behind them? That is why a horse will often turn it's head or even swing it's butt away to better see what might be there. People invariably get kicked when approaching a horse from a rearward direction because the horse really doesn't know what's coming. His first defence is kicking out.
         
        01-30-2013, 02:55 PM
      #14
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kenda    
    Interesting, my first thought was how much exercise or turnout does this horse get? Such a high energy breed, and I wonder if it's nervous tension from having pent up energy. Does he ever get to get out and let loose and run?
    Yes he is turned out with 3 other horses just about all day. They come in to be fed once a day for an hour or so.
         
        01-30-2013, 05:27 PM
      #15
    Green Broke
    With TB, I would not be making him move when what I wanted was for him to stand still. Teach him voice command to "Be still" and then make him. Don't let him move away, bring him back into position calmly and tell him to be still and then work on what you were doing.

    The more you tiptoe with him, the worse he is going to get.

    And while there are horses I have worked with, that I could do things to unhaltered? Rarely did I do it. Once you have tried to do something with horse loose, and he moves? You have taught him to not listen to you.

    Halter him for everything, make him stand still, and don't baby him.

    You as much as anything are making him this way. And no soothing voices either.
    apachewhitesox and Sissy like this.
         
        01-30-2013, 10:47 PM
      #16
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Palomine    
    With TB, I would not be making him move when what I wanted was for him to stand still. Teach him voice command to "Be still" and then make him. Don't let him move away, bring him back into position calmly and tell him to be still and then work on what you were doing.

    The more you tiptoe with him, the worse he is going to get.

    And while there are horses I have worked with, that I could do things to unhaltered? Rarely did I do it. Once you have tried to do something with horse loose, and he moves? You have taught him to not listen to you.

    Halter him for everything, make him stand still, and don't baby him.

    You as much as anything are making him this way. And no soothing voices either.
    I think this is going to be the best road to take with him.
         
        02-03-2013, 10:10 PM
      #17
    Foal
    Worked with him some about standing still. We can work through it......Our bond is slowly getting better.

    Need more help:
    What are your suggestions for getting him past nervousness in different situations...like going to the arena....going to the small local rodeo....just with anything different he panicks. He gets jumpy and prances and skitters around.
         
        02-04-2013, 05:13 AM
      #18
    Trained
    Work with him at home. Don't take him out. If the arena is at home, then work with him there. If not, then still work with him there, but it will take a little longer.

    Just standing and chilling with him will do wonders. People don't do enough of it. It's a wonderful cure for the nervous horse, and brilliant for the over-eager or impatient horse as well. It does take a LOT of patience because you don't leave until your horse stops freaking out!
         
        02-04-2013, 07:53 AM
      #19
    Showing
    If he's ever raced, he may get excited thinking he will be racing again. Try taking him for walks and keep your attention focused well ahead of you. If he acts nervous, don't look at him if possible, and just keep walking. Like the dog whisperer says, calm and assertive. Don't pet or baby him should he spook. In the pasture he's not doing this. If the leader suddenly scoots off he will (survival) and he won't dare take a step past the leader or suffer the consequences. By focusing you are teaching him that you are his leader. Being the leader is not a pleasant job and most horses don't want it.
         

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