Pawing To The Extreme

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Pawing To The Extreme

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  • Horse with bad pawing habits
  • Bad habits in horses pawing

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    03-22-2012, 01:01 PM
Pawing To The Extreme

I have a 15 year old Paint mare that I've been working with for the last 5 months and she's already turning into my dream horse ; except for one problem . She paws so extremely to the point that we call it "Digging to China ."

It's very off and on but when she does it, she does it violently . At first we thought she was sore because I gave her a few days off and she came back fine . But just recently she pawed so hard she reared up . My trainer and I have joked that we're going to tie her up all day till she learns it won't get her anywhere but I'm not sure . I want to show her this summer and I don't want her pawing dirt or mud at herself or others, or worse, injuring herself . Help ?
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    03-22-2012, 02:34 PM
How much turnout time does she get? Pawing usually results from nerves or boredom. Try doing something fun with her when she paws, take her out for a walk or saddle up and stimulate her brain. Good luck :).
    03-22-2012, 02:58 PM
She's on pasture board so basically turned out till I bring her in . And ok, lately I've been taking a break from working her on pleasure and just going trail riding for bonding and building muscle and slimming down her hay belly .
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    03-23-2012, 10:43 AM
I wish I could help you I have the same problem with a 24 or older mare. It hard to stop I have tryed. And tryed everything. So if you find a way please let me know.
    03-23-2012, 03:38 PM
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Pawing and door banging are really annoying bad habits and one I will not tolerate.

If a horse starts to do either then I will rush to its stable and give it a good poke with the handle of a broom or fork and chase it around the stable threatening it blue murder.
They do it for attention and when they get unwanted attention they soon stop.
    03-23-2012, 03:41 PM
Well I don't believe chasing her will solve anything other than her being terrified of me . Normally I tap her leg and she stops, but the second I walk away, she starts up again .
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    03-23-2012, 03:49 PM
I haven't had much experience with a horse that paws chronically like your horse does but usually if a horse paws either hen I'm in the saddle or on the ground paws I treat it just like if they weren't standing still and make them work. Hard. Get them to realize that it's much more comfortable and easier to stand still and quite then all the moving about and pawing they were doing before. If your in the saddle and it happens I would suggest trotting circles, serpentines, figure eights, squares...mix it up and don't drill on just one pattern but keep them moving until they start acting like they want to slow down, then work them about five minutes past that breaking point. You could also do side passes down the rail--or trail--roll backs--sometimes I will do canter to a place, stop, roll back, then just walk or trot off then stop at another place, roll back and canter, that way the speed is varied and it keeps them on their toes. You can also try backing her up a couple steps or yielding her hind quarters when she does this although I find this doesn't really work in the long run and if you are already having problems with her rearing I don't think you want to try backing her up.
Hope this helps :)
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    03-23-2012, 03:50 PM
I forgot to add that if you're on the ground you can basically do everything I suggested, except in a lunging format. :)
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    03-23-2012, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by KGolden    
Well I don't believe chasing her will solve anything other than her being terrified of me . Normally I tap her leg and she stops, but the second I walk away, she starts up again .
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No, she will not be terrified of you, she will respect you for correcting her providing the correction is done as she is pawing the ground.
You do not hit them, just give them a poke and chase them backwards around the stable a few times. They soon learn.
    03-23-2012, 08:12 PM
I think we should first rule out fear. If you chase a horse around or hit a horse that is scared it will not end very well. I think you should take your horse out and do something fun, see if she eases up on her pawing.

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