My horse spooks to everything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 06-01-2007, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
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My horse spooks to everything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hi I have 3 miniature horses. My first horse I ever got was a mini and his name is Rascal. I still have him, and I got him from an abused home. He is afraid of everything. When I got him he couldn't do anything and normally I am good with horses and good at getting them to do whatever I want. Well the other 2 I trained not to spook and this one is not getting it he is afraid of everything. Things he can not even see or things that make the litllest sound. He is also my show jumper and is afraid of crowds so I really need help with this horse. Any ideas on what I should do?
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post #2 of 12 Old 06-02-2007, 12:12 AM
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lol this may sound kinda mean but when he spooks give him a good pop on the butt he'll think again before he does it next time. See some horses that spook for no reason see that they can get away with doing it its kinda like a bad habit you gotta break that bad habit some nice poppings are good. No its not cruel its just a way to teach him not to be scared.
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post #3 of 12 Old 06-03-2007, 06:19 PM
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Assuming he is not in pain, and his eyesight is good.

If you have access to a round pen, or small corral put him there. Let him get comfy, then do lunging. Work with him, brush him, spend lots of time with him. He needs to trust you before he can overcome his fear. Once he trusts you, you can help him, as he will look to you for guidence on fear.

Now, start de-sensitizing him. First to small things, like the lead rope, a trash can in the pen, then a moving (rolling) trash can, then a plastic bag - first outside the pen, then slowly closer. If he panics, you back off, slowly work closer to him, try not to panic him, try to keep him in his comfort zone. This takes a lot of time, but it really works well. He learns not to be afraid, and/or he learns how to control his fear. Do everything you can think of to test him in his safe pen. Wheelbarros, water hoses, umbrellas, banging noises... Then take him out of his pen, and do the same thing.

Eventually take him someplace around a few people, let him become accustomed to the noise of only a handful of people, then increase the people - slowly.

When you take him out, you might take him with another calm horse, so he can see that whatever it is he is afraid of is not eating the other horse, so probably won't eat him either...

This takes quite a bit of time, but really works. My friend has been doing this with an abused Mustang. She started at the end of Jan. He is now pretty much bombproof. He might jump in place on something that startles him, but all she has to do is say "Easy boy, it's ok." And he settles right down. He trusts her totally.

Hope this helps. :)
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post #4 of 12 Old 06-03-2007, 06:32 PM
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Something I do with my horse who is also a spaz is bring them for walks on the road or something. She feels more comforatble with me with her, so that helps alot. Once they are convinced that cars and other objects will not eat them, they will be better and more realiable with a rider.
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post #5 of 12 Old 12-13-2011, 10:42 PM
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ok. First thing is to get him to trust you. I reccomend doing a join up. (look it up online for details) you have the horse trot or canter around you while you are in an aggressive stance. When the horse lowers its head, turns its ear, and begins chewing with its mouth, drop your body language and turn your back to him. He then should follow you everywhere. After that begin desensitizing. I don't believe in punishing a horse for being scared the first time. If you have ridden by something scary a couple of times and let him take a good look at it, then you can ride tight circles around it making him bend a lot for punishment.
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-13-2011, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jr_lover View Post
lol this may sound kinda mean but when he spooks give him a good pop on the butt he'll think again before he does it next time. See some horses that spook for no reason see that they can get away with doing it its kinda like a bad habit you gotta break that bad habit some nice poppings are good. No its not cruel its just a way to teach him not to be scared.
So teach a horse not to be afraid by causing pain every time he sees the thing he's scared of. Right. Nothing like reinforcing the fear response.

Instead, while I don't generally recommend flagging and such, I think a good course of desensitizing and "tarping" is what this guy needs.
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post #7 of 12 Old 12-13-2011, 11:47 PM
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This little guy needs more exposure. Reminds of a mare I had years ago, spooked at everything, even me brushing dust off my pants. I took her out into the world and let her see everything "scary". Within a few years, this mare was unspookable.
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post #8 of 12 Old 12-14-2011, 03:39 AM
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Why whack a horse that has a natural flight element... bizzare!

Takes time, patience, trust and tarp.
You have some brill advice, just keep working. Mine is great, nothing bothers her, then cooling down last night she spooked at a pony...great!
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post #9 of 12 Old 12-14-2011, 03:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jr_lover View Post
lol this may sound kinda mean but when he spooks give him a good pop on the butt he'll think again before he does it next time.
I find it's better to electrocute them when they're scared.

:roll:

Seriously, as others have said, putting a horse through pain when it's having a natural fear response to something is only going to cause huge issues for the animal and in try the handler.
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post #10 of 12 Old 12-14-2011, 09:31 AM
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haha do not pop him that's crazy. I would make an obstacle course for him it will be fun for both you and him. Anything can be used like obstacle 1 car ... he must walk around car while car is off, then walk around when car is turned on, then walk next to car while moving up the driveway. Obstacle 2 tarp. He must walk around tarp, walk over obstacle 3 buckets... put as many bucket as you have in some sort of design straight line zigzags anything... make him move through them. Etc ect I did this with my arabian its alot of fun and it will help bring more trust between you two
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