Need help with a stubborn horse and the trailer! - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By ~*~anebel~*~
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 5 Old 04-08-2013, 05:46 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: North Bay
Posts: 248
• Horses: 2
Need help with a stubborn horse and the trailer!

Hello there! I'm in a bit of a predicament, and I really would appreciate any help that can be given.

So I have this horse, and I love her to bits. I love showing her, but the problem is she has such a hard time getting in the trailer. She's not scared of it, she's just so stubborn! She'll rear and turn away from it or just stand there and not budge. Mostly she'll just rear. And if you get her into the trailer, before you can even move to put up the back bar she'll back up so quickly. Same with trying to put the trailer tie on her halter.

I've tried to take the partition out so its more spacious but I still achieve the same results. We've tried grain/treat to coax her on, lunging before hand, putting another horse on first and other things but still she won't get on. I'm starting to think it's lack of respect she has for me, but I've been riding this horse for 5 years?

So please, anyone, I'd like to know a solid way to help her get on the trailer. Any input is appreciated, thank you!

"People have always cared me a bit, you see - they're too complicated. I suppose that's why I prefer horses." -- From the movie Separate Tables
Innocent Spectacle ♥ Mystique
equestrian_rider465 is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 Old 04-08-2013, 05:49 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: East Central Illinois
Posts: 7,109
• Horses: 3
You need Clinton Anderson's Lunging for Respect. It helps to get your horse to go anywhere and into anything that he is unreasonably afraid of going, and I have used to train my 16'33hh gelding to stand by the mounting block, among other things, so it does work.

A Jack and Three Queens, the latest book by James C. Dedman,
Hope that you fall in love with "Trot", like I did!
Corporal is offline  
post #3 of 5 Old 04-08-2013, 05:58 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: In the saddle.
Posts: 5,157
• Horses: 1
It really depends on the horse.

My horse was in a trailering accident, and even before then was not a great loader. But now he hops onto the trailer so quickly I can't actually be in front of him in the trailer. He is a self loader.

What he used to do was get frantic and run back and forth in front of the trailer, rear, bolt, etc.. So I just made him stand in front of the ramp, just stand still, and then waited. Patience is key, give yourself an hour, and have hay just in the trailer (I always have at least a handful of hay in the manger when my horses get in). Eventually she should hop up. Don't punish anything, just reposition her calmly in front of the trailer if she moves.
I used this method for another horse who had not every been trailered apart from the trip to the vet check when he was purchased. We did the same thing with him. No pressure, just hop on when you're ready. He also now self loads. Takes me under 30 seconds to get both horses loaded by myself.

Don't over complicate it. It's the same as anything else. Make the right thing easy, stay calm and don't make anything more dangerous than it has to be (lunging by the trailer scares the bajeebus out of me). Patience is key. The horse did not learn how to stand in the crossties perfectly in one day, or to be in a stall, or to jump a 4' course. It will take time and good experiences.

Good luck!
SullysRider likes this.

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
~*~anebel~*~ is offline  
post #4 of 5 Old 04-08-2013, 06:10 PM
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 304
• Horses: 0
My favorite topic to talk about :)

I have a 16hh Thoroughbred who can be the world's most stubborn horse. When we got her she was deathly afraid of trailers, then we got her to the point she was to stubborn to go in.

One method I used was lunge before hand, ask for them to get in, if they don't go lunge the heck out of them again, go over and try again, if they don't get in or take an attempt such as sniffing/licking lips/picking up feet go lunge the heck out of them. That has been the best thing that has worked with me.

The method of if they take a step you back them up hasn't worked for me. The thoroughbred got smart and I would get her half in and then she wouldn't get in because she thought she was suppost to back out and if you pulled on the lead to correct her she would throw her head up, hit it on the trailer, and flip out.

Make her learn that it is a whole heck of work outside the trailer. When I mean make it work, lunge her for 5 minutes doing a ton of transitions. I do trotting, no cantering. I let my horses have a few chances at the trailer to get in and if you can see its a deffo no I immediately start lunging the heck out of them.

My thoroughbred mare now you can walk up to the trailer, stop, throw the lead and she walks right in.

You could also put a butt rope on her. Tie it to one side of the trailer, run a lunge line through the front of the trailer and give a tug on it while tugging on the butt rope. Thats the only way we can load out stud and he rears straight up in the air, but we can load him in 5 secs if he just sees the butt rope. Then its harder for them to back up. Also never tie before you put the butt bar on, butt bar goes on first then tie.
Thrill Ride is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old 04-08-2013, 06:26 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
Posts: 17,193
• Horses: 0
The last thing you want to do is go into the trailer yourself. Sometimes a person will stand in the trailer, facing the horse to coax it in. The person doesn't hear the horse say "you're in my way and there's no room to pass". Entering the trailer can result in your death, it happened to a well known equestrian at the Biltmore Estates. There are some CA examples on youtube. Look at his trailer loading over and over until it is imprinted in your head, then go load your horse.
Saddlebag is offline  

horse , stubborn , trailer problems

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Horse is Very Stubborn, Help? newbie1990 Horse Training 4 10-28-2012 10:33 PM
Very stubborn horse! Deschutes Horse Training 4 05-31-2012 05:31 PM
Very Stubborn Horse!! ernie5567 Horse Training 36 04-09-2012 04:48 PM
Stubborn Horse? MooseDragon Horse Training 2 01-22-2012 05:36 PM
Stubborn Horse! teegan71 Horse Riding 3 02-21-2011 06:31 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome