Picking up back feet - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 12:38 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Ohio
Posts: 237
• Horses: 0
Picking up back feet

Well my gelding seems to be a bit stubborn with his back feet, he'll pick them up but then tends to try and kick out with the foot. Im not sure if hes trying to kick or just pull the hoof away, either way, its a problem. The person i got him from really didnt handle him much since fall because she found out she had cancer. He does ok with the front hooves, he just wants to pull them from you after a few seconds. Anyways, i've worked with horses who didnt like picking up there feet but normally there just babies who want to put it back down. With him i cant tell if hes trying to kick out or put his foot back down. Were scheduling our farrier for next week, and even though his feet dont look to need a trim (he has awesome hoofs ), i'd still like my farrier to take a look at him. So i'd like to work with him on this before he comes out. Any tips i can try? He really is a sweet heart, you can go right behind him and hes never tried anything, i honestly dont believe hes meaning to kick. But he just really dislikes picking his back feet up :/, he also loves to paw haha. Were working on the quirks, so far hes a big baby who loves attention. Just want to get him over this back feet hurtle. So far everytime i pick it up and he does his "jerk/kick out" i smack him in the rump and try again. I feel bad giving him a slap in the butt because he acts like im the devil coming to get him lol. So just looking for some safe methods to get him to overcome this.

PS: when i say slap him in the butt, i've never smacked him hard or used anything other than my hand. I think he's just sensitive.
Born2Ride is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 03:31 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: In the Twiggs
Posts: 1,724
• Horses: 3
sierrams1123 is offline  
post #3 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 04:33 AM
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Tipperary Ireland
Posts: 37
• Horses: 0
Is it possible that he needs to learn to trust you? If so I'd spend some time with him doing things such as grooming,sitting talking to him and maybe even some groundwork. I could be completely wrong but just a suggestion.
Posted via Mobile Device
Lynnie is offline  
post #4 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 10:09 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: MD
Posts: 23,907
• Horses: 2
Work on picking it up with the lead rope: slide it around the leg just above the hoof and gently pull up, keep it there, and gently put it back (preferably before he tries to pull it back or kick out). And just keep increasing the time in air with lots of praise when he does it right. This way you keep yourself safe, and rope gives better leverage to pick it up.

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass: it's about learning to dance in the rain..."

"When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves."

"How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."
kitten_Val is offline  
post #5 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 10:20 AM
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 432
• Horses: 0
When he does kick/try to take his foot away just keep holding it. You can use a lead rope or something else to hold it further away from you if you are worried about getting kicked. Hold the foot until his is relaxed and standing quietly then put it down. Do not let go if he is fighting or else he wins and you lose.
LynnF is offline  
post #6 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 10:26 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: MD
Posts: 23,907
• Horses: 2
Originally Posted by LynnF View Post
Do not let go if he is fighting or else he wins and you lose.
I respectfully disagree. Holding horse's hoof when it goes into serious fight (especially if it also falls into the panic) may end up with the hoof in face or the knee, or the horse falling down on you losing it's balance. It's much safer for both to pick it up and put it back the moment before the horse starts to fight even if it only takes 2-3 secs. This way you win indeed, simply because the horse (and you) did what you wanted to do.

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass: it's about learning to dance in the rain..."

"When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves."

"How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."
kitten_Val is offline  
post #7 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 10:41 AM
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Canada
Posts: 44
• Horses: 3
My mare used to do this, she looked like she was kicking, but really she was quickly stamping. I kept making actions to pick up her hoof, until she slowed and allowed me to pick it up, and is fine now. If your horse is kicking out, you could try rubbing/ touching a crop on his back leg until he stops kicking. If it seems lime a dangerous situation, I suggest you wait for the farrier;)
Posted via Mobile Device
HorsieLove is offline  
post #8 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 11:21 AM
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: North Texas area
Posts: 31
• Horses: 2
My mare did something like that when I first got her. She picked her back feet up so fast I sometimes wasn't ready. And then when I had hold she would kind of jerk it forward or back, not really a kick, but worrisome for me. I just did a lot of pick it up, put it down stuff. Try to beat her to to punch so to speak. She also had the habit of stomping all four down really quick when I let go. After she learn I was just going to pick it up and put it down (after the first day ot two she got this) I would hold it for longer and longer periods. Instead of slapping her I would just jiggle her hoof when I felt her tense to pull or push away. The whole time I would talk calmly to her, but when I jiggled her foot my tone would change just enough for her to know I wasn't happy with that. Now I can say "pick it up" and she does. (even if its the ferrier picking it up, not me).
Patience and more patience. He'll get it.
ginjohns is offline  
post #9 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 11:25 AM
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 656
• Horses: 1
Could be possibly be unbalanced and is nervous about picking up his feet because he thinks he'll fall? I know when I first got my boy, he did not like picking up his feet as he was very unbalanced and didn't know how to balance on three feet.
It took a few months of slowely improving his balance, but now he stands perfectly fine and relaxed for the farrier.
Just another thing to think about...
Posted via Mobile Device
gothicangel69 is offline  
post #10 of 29 Old 02-10-2012, 11:27 AM
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 11,869
• Horses: 0
I agree with Val. If he is kicking, start with a rope. It will give you leverage and keep you out of the danger zone. Start slow, lift, release, over & over. Gradually up the time you expect him to hold it up. Once he's accepting of that work your way back to that leg while using the rope and just transfer his leg to your free hand. Should he get fussy, you've still got the rope and can back off if need be to avoid a kick. It usually doesn't take too long to get them over it that way.
sporthorsegirl and mildot like this.

Life is like a camera. Focus on what's important, Capture the good times, Develop from the negatives and if things don't work out, Take another shot.
MHFoundation Quarters is offline  

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
Picking up a horses back feet Cowgirlali Horse Grooming 10 11-19-2011 01:28 AM
Picking up the back feet. Southern Horse Training 2 05-01-2011 01:50 AM
Picking back feet from opposite side? coffeeaddict Horse Grooming 8 07-08-2010 10:59 AM
Picking up back feet issues draftrider Horse Training 15 04-01-2010 01:51 PM
Picking up her feet - Help? wordstoasong Horse Training 4 08-01-2008 12:26 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