pinning ears back when leading?? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 15 Old 07-10-2012, 07:44 PM Thread Starter
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pinning ears back when leading??

I have gotten a 3/4 arabian and 1/4 riding pony 6 year old mare. She is the sweetest thing, and is so quiet, but whenever I lead her she pins her ears back. She doesnt do anything, just pins them back and swishes her tail. She does the same thing sometimes when I am riding and doing up her girth. (shes a bit 'girthy'). Could anyone help me and tell me why she would be doing this?? She is absolutely perfect in every other way, I would just like to figure out why she would put her ears back like that. Thanks :) Kayla

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post #2 of 15 Old 07-10-2012, 07:51 PM
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Sounds like she is being a hag and trying to dominate you.

If not corrected it will most likely escalate.
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post #3 of 15 Old 07-10-2012, 07:53 PM Thread Starter
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ok, how can I stop her trying to dominate me??

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post #4 of 15 Old 07-10-2012, 09:28 PM
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Does she happen to be low on the herd pecking order?

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post #5 of 15 Old 07-11-2012, 03:26 AM Thread Starter
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she is in by her self at the moment. Though she is next to a grey gelding in another paddock. But they get along really well.

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post #6 of 15 Old 07-11-2012, 07:06 AM
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post #7 of 15 Old 07-11-2012, 07:17 AM
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Sounds like a naggy mare to me. First things first though - get a full vet check. Generally gumpy attitude is caused by discomfort. Does she do those things more when she's in heat?

With girthing problems I find most people just put on the girth moving it immediately to the tighest hole their strength allows them to reach. The bottom center of where the girth goes is a nerve plexis(sp?) - it's just like we have in the same spot on us. When we do up the girth quickly and tightly it knocks the wind out of them - like a blow to the chest. I have actually seen horses pass out when being girthed too quickly. I would wanna bite someone too if they repeated punched me in the chest. But obviously you need the girth on and you need iy quite snug. So put it on the first whole where you can feel any pressure - so it's pretty loose. Then do something else for a minute, like fly spraying, then move it to the next hole up, repeat this process until it's tight enough. Now as soon as she sees the girth she's going to anticipate discomfort so she won't stop pinning immediately but after a few days of tightening slowly she won't be so bothered. This has worked wonders with our lesson horses too.

As for leading my only thought is about personal space. Just like us horses have personal space bubbles and it's awfully rude of us to just walk over and grab their face. In my opinion they can be allowed to be grumpy about that so long as they don't act on their attitude. But perhaps you're holding the rope too close to her face. Hold the rope so there is some slack between you and her only applying pressure when she needs ut to move forward or away. This way there is always a release of pressure to reward her.

I hope this helps some :)
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post #8 of 15 Old 07-11-2012, 11:16 AM
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Yeah everyone, I'm sure she's just being a 'hag'... :S
Anywho, how do you lead her? A lot of people move their hand while leading, constantly knocking the horse in the head with each step. They also turn the horse's head slightly towards them, or keep tension on the line. This irritates most horses. The horse doesn't actually need you to help her walk. I think she's got that down.
Don't look back at her when you walk. Keep her next to you but other than that, keep slack in the line.
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post #9 of 15 Old 07-12-2012, 02:35 AM Thread Starter
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thanks punkstank. I am very cautious to make sure I don't do the girth up too quickly. I don't find that she does those things more when she's in heat, and I always make sure I give her her space. Rascalboy, I lead her with a bit of slack, and not moving my hand. I have had quite a lot of experience with horses and have learnt how to lead properly from a very young age.

Thanks for the help everyone. I have talked to my mum and she thinks that its because she hasnt been ridden everyday for a while, and that once she is used to me riding her she will stop putting her ears back.

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post #10 of 15 Old 07-12-2012, 03:21 AM
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