My horse WONT go out by herself. helppp - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 10-11-2008, 07:52 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy My horse WONT go out by herself. helppp

Me and my horse used to go out on trail rides ALL the time alone. lately out of nowhere she refuses to go unless someone else goes. Now, i dont go to a barn, so there's never anyone else there. the people who own the horses come down once and a while but its not enough. When i make her go out she just turns around and rears until we get close to the field she lives in. any suggestions? she's almost unridable alone :(

-Katie
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post #2 of 8 Old 10-11-2008, 08:34 PM
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My horse used to be really herd bound. What I did was separated him from the other horses all the time. I kept him in a stall at night (the other two stay out) and let him out in a small pasture during the day. The other horses were in one of the grass pastures which was quite a bit a ways from the one my horse was in. Then I went and spent time with him daily, whether it be riding, lounging, or simply feeding and grooming. He soon associated me as being his 'herd' and the leader of it. It made him so he was dependent on me and not on his buddies. You could try this with your horse if you like and see how it works for you. :)

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post #3 of 8 Old 10-11-2008, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
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but there is no stalls or other pastures. the one she is in is 50 acers and has walk in shelters

-Katie
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post #4 of 8 Old 10-12-2008, 10:26 AM
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that is tough. I am running into same thing with my horse. I find if I put her in stall for a few nights she is much better. But w/o that you will have to look for ways to bond with her and get her to trust you as leader. I am working on this myself. There are lots of resources (google carolyn resnick)

good luck
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post #5 of 8 Old 10-12-2008, 01:02 PM
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Walk her out in hand. Go on a "hike" with her on the trail, just her halter on. Take a whip if you need to, and a pocket full of treats. When she acts up, correct her firmly and quickly, make her stand until she's quiet, then praise her and give her a treat and keep moving! Make the walk fun, let her graze some when she's good. On the way home, make her walk quietly. If she won't walk her in a circle at that spot until she'll walk quietly, then keep going. If walking in a circle doesn't work, then turn her to face away from the barn and just stand there until she settles down. Then praise her and give her a treat, and keep going.

When you get back to the barn, don't put her up right away. Work her on the lunge or in the round pen, then tie her up and let her stand for 30-90 minutes. While she's standing, do some tack cleaning or whatever, or bring a book. Make sure you can see her, but you're still away from her. Don't let her off the post (or whatever you have her tied to) until she's standing calmly. Then praise her, give her some treats, and turn her out.

Rinse and repeat the above until she no longer acts up when going away from the barn. THEN you can try riding her again. If she rears on you, get off and continue in hand until calms down, then get back on. If she rears or acts up again, get off again. Just keep moving away from the barn. Eventually, you should be able to control her from the saddle without having to get off. Just don't forget to praise her when she is doing right.
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post #6 of 8 Old 10-12-2008, 01:04 PM
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it works, I have been doing the walking thing with my crazy mare and today she was much better, (no rearing) I do have to carry a crop. I don't have to hit her just tap her very lightly or just show it to her when she refuses to move forward. I don't give treats until the end though because I have her all tacked up and then when I get far away enough from barn get on her. It works well thanks for the folks here. :)
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post #7 of 8 Old 10-12-2008, 01:10 PM
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Glad to hear it's working ponies! Those walks in hand are a real bonding experience. I don't think we spend enough time with our horses on the ground. Everyone is in such a hurry to get riding...

That's another good point. Walk all the way out, then ride back! If the horse acts up on the way back, just circle in one spot until she's calm, praise, and then keep going. Just be sure to switch circling directions each time, so you don't end up with a one-sided horse .
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post #8 of 8 Old 10-12-2008, 01:25 PM
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I've also found walking to be a big help. When I first got my mare she wouldn't leave the yard. I found if I just walked her a few hundred feet or so then got on, she would go out fine. If she got balky on the trail, same thing, just get off and walk a short way, then get back on. I didn't make a big deal or punish her for it, and it worked.

I second the separation from the other horses if possible. When my two mares were in one turnout together, it seemed there was more 'separation anxiety' when I took one out. I keep them in separate stalls, and adjoining turnouts. Seems to help.
Good luck!
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