Need Advice! - Yearling Fillies that have never been touched! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 10-22-2009, 12:50 PM Thread Starter
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Need Advice! - Yearling Fillies that have never been touched!

My barn owner is going to be fostering 3 yearling paint fillies that were pulled from a slaughter pen. These 3 little girls will be arriving next week, they have NEVER been touched by human hands. They lived in a field and the only time they had any human interaction was when they were hearded onto a double decker trailer, brought to auction and thrown into a kill pen...

So Carol (my trainer) has asked me if I'll put as much work into them as I can cause she thinks it will be a great opportunity for me too. Im super excited! But nervous, I've never done anything like this before! Any advice for working with these girls? They're basically wild. I know I need to go slow and just spend time with them at first, any other ideas? should I just had out in the paddock, give them treats, etc? Thanks!

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post #2 of 4 Old 10-22-2009, 01:09 PM
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I would separate all of them for starters. I would bring them their grain and hay. Just let them get used to you. You could also work them in the round pen to get them to latch on. Do you have to have them gentle in a certain time?
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post #3 of 4 Old 10-22-2009, 01:18 PM
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I actually had (still have, but they are 5+ now! :) ) 2 yearlings fillies like you described.

The 1st one was unhandled, but she was not afraid of people (that's a very VERY big thing in fact). So after 1 week of keeping her by herself (to be sure she's not sick) in big grass ring with lots of room I just let her go to other horses. And she always came to me, so I never had issues, I also didn't keep halter on her.

My 2nd one was wild, abused, and totally terrified of people (especially men, she still doesn't like working with males much). I guess it may sound mean, but I kept her in stall for one week just letting her run for couple hours/day in big round pen with short rope attached so I could catch her. I fed her myself every single day and while she was eating (she didn't even what grain is in beginning) I was standing by talking to her. I also try to communicate with her as much as possible and started brushing and all couple days after her arrival. Week later I let her go with other horses with halter. Another week later I took halter off completely.

It's lots of work, so be ready for that, but it's rewarding too! Good luck!
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post #4 of 4 Old 10-22-2009, 01:25 PM
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I have done this with yearling and older horses AND it was ALOT easier with yearlings as they have had only a year of being untouched and usually the curiosity gets the best of them where as an older untouched horse has years of being untouched and sometimes they are just built in their ways.

I believe with patience, grain, talking to them, and just going with their pace, you will win them over in NO time. Once they find out you are not there to hurt them, they should do great. Don't get me wrong, it is hard work, but in the end it is very rewarding!! Good Luck!!

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