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post #11 of 18 Old 12-28-2010, 02:19 PM
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Found it. One of the manufacturers is Nutrena. It's a 12% pelleted feed, made for feeding directly on the ground.

So it's nothing special, just a bigger pellet than normal pelleted feed.
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post #12 of 18 Old 12-28-2010, 02:26 PM
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Interesting. Never heard of such a thing. I could not find them on Nutrena's web site either.

OP, the best way to deal with any horse is to treat them like a horse. I know that remembering they are a heard animal and not a human is sometimes very hard for us (general human us).

Last edited by Alwaysbehind; 12-28-2010 at 02:29 PM.
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post #13 of 18 Old 12-28-2010, 03:22 PM
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Just keep doing what you are doing. Be understanding and gentle but do not be afraid to be aggressive when need be. You must be firm, otherwise this horse will learn to walk all over you. There are many, many horses in this world that people insist were once abused but that is kind of a personal label for many of them. Handled rough is what I tend to describe them as.

I have a horse that would truley fit the abused/neglected category and believe it or not, he never feared humans. He has very little respect for them, men especially. He's not an agressive animal but he will fight if he feels the need. I personally saw him beaten with a 2x4. I saw the owners (teenaged boys) sit on their back deck and shoot him with a beebee gun. They thought it was funny when he bucked.

When I got him home he was over 200 lbs under weight and had a hole in his face about the size of the tip of my pinky that oozed puss and was covered with gnats. He had several loose teeth and this horrible scab on his withers from ill fitting tack. Biggest mistake I made? I forgave him. For EVERYTHING. I went to put the halter on and he ran... My though? Oh, he's scared. Nope, didn't want to be caught. But I walked away because he was scared. I taught him how to avoid being haltered. No halter, no work. Don't do that.

He would rear. Terrible rearer. I never got firm, he was abused. Can't be firm with an abused horse. Wrong! Be firm. I'm not saying be rough, just let him know there ARE boundaries or you are going to have issues. He's probably smart and if he is, he'll learn your buttons really fast.

As for the halter, treat it like a bridel when you are removing it. Don't pull it off, unhook the latch and let him pull out of it gently. Just like the bit, you let him drop it rather then banging his teeth.

I would get a vet out for a quick health check and as they said, age check but be gentle and firm. You'll do great.

"Be a best friend, tell the truth, and overuse I love you
Go to work, do your best, don't outsmart your common sense
Never let your prayin knees get lazy
And love like crazy"
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post #14 of 18 Old 12-28-2010, 08:03 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Missoula, Montana - Transplanted from Anchorage Alaska
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Thank you so much for your input cause I was actually wondering when or if he will learn he can use the "Oh, I've been abused, so don't push me" trick. I had to leave town for a few hours this afternoon and decided to give him one of those treats before I left. He met me at the gate as I opened it and walked in. All of a sudden, he JUMPED to the left, snorted, and bolted off about 40 yards. His eyes looked like he saw a ghost! I stood there for about 30 seconds just puzzled why he would suddenly act like that. Then I realized I had my purse on my arm. Duh! I put my purse down, walked forward about 10 yards, and then invited him to me. He came to me with no problem and accepted his treat. I pet his forehead and then left.

My question is: How do I determine when to be firm and when to give him a break due to him being so afraid? I don't want this to become a crutch for him and I definitely dont want him thinking he can push me around. He did turn his bum to me one time. I firmly and loudly told him "NO!" (instructions from trainer) and he turned back around. He hasn't done it again, but what if "NO!" doesn't cut it next time? I guess I'm concerned about him out-smarting me, lol since I have no idea how clever he is, but also do not want to traumatize him or make things worse. I'm just glad I have you folks here to guide me through this process. I hope its okay to keep asking questions and documenting our progress.

Thank you all SOOO SOOOOO much!

Darla & Argy
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post #15 of 18 Old 12-29-2010, 05:05 AM
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Congrats on taking on an abused horse. I did too, and it took about 6 months before Whiskey would stand to be groomed- before that, he screamed for his horsey friends, and his buddies neighed right back. He danced from side to side, acted like a general pain. Even though he was abused, I never hesitated to give him a firm, deserved smack when he was trying to pin me to the hitching post. If he would step on my heels when I was trying to lead him, he got a smack on the nose with the lead rope.
I guess what I'm trying to say is- yes, treat him like a horse. Take things slowly with haltering, and coming around to his left side and such, but if he ever strikes out at you in any way- kicking, biting etc.- do as any herd animal would do back to him- kick back.
Good luck with him. After two years, my horse trusts me now, and is an unbelievable trail partner. I hope yours turns out the same. will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. ... Explore. Dream. Discover.”
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post #16 of 18 Old 12-29-2010, 06:42 PM
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I've got a youngster who was from the same kinda back ground. He was only young so it it didn't take long for him to come around, i spent time on the bond with him. I have been very lucky that he bonded with he very really from the first time he came off the trailer. I spent hours in with him, mucking out around him, reading books (re-reading them), singing songs. I left the radio on alot so there was always some kind of noise going on around him. I didn't touch or groom him for a few days, I found that when he was looked after but left to figure out "what the strange woman" was doing he willing came to me.
With the head collar, i'd make it a very positive thing so be confident and if you put it on before you feed him that way its not a bad thing that he will want to fight.
start of with little bites that way you won't flood him, but remember at point if your not in control he will see it as a way of reacting thats reasonable reaction.
good luck, I know I've now got a youngster who grounded, very sweet and is happy and willing to learn new things.

If there's madness in my method, does that mean there's method in my madness!!
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post #17 of 18 Old 12-29-2010, 08:09 PM
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Those cubes are very common feed used by outfitters going back to hunting camps for weeks on end. They can haul in tons of it by packhorse instead of trying to pack in bales of hay. some camps are so far back they are on able to be reached by horseback, so getting feed to the horses during the time they are in camps is best done by hay cubes.
Alot of folks actually feed hay cubes during winter instead of hay, easier to store and feed out and takes less room than hay. They use cubes to feed the elk at the feedgrounds also.
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post #18 of 18 Old 12-29-2010, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, thank you Wyominggrandma for this information! I knew they were used for people who went hunting but didn't know how or why or any of the interesting details you provided :) Thank you for that because now I feel better giving them to him knowing they aren't really "treats". He just thinks they are. WIN!
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