Pinning ears in stall
 
 

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Pinning ears in stall

This is a discussion on Pinning ears in stall within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Horse only eats in stall, why does it pinn it ears
  • Horse gets aggresive when i enter his stall

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  • 1 Post By rob

 
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    10-24-2011, 09:40 AM
  #1
Weanling
Pinning ears in stall

Recently my boy has started pinning his ears when he's in his stall. He's only been stalled for a little over a month now - prior to that he'd been pasture boarded his entire life (he's 6, I've had him 1 year now). But even with a stall, he's in about 2 hours/day, one for breakfast one for dinner - the rest of the time is on pasture with a herd of 6.

Just the last week or so he's started pinning his ears at anyone who comes towards his stall, but then puts his ears back up as soon as they get close.

I groom and tack him in his stall, and mostly he just lets me come and go, but occasionally he's started pinning his hears, squealing, and kicking his heels up a bit (only maybe an inch - just a threat, so far - I don't want it to escalate to more than that). I go in and out of his stall maybe 7 or 8 times changing brushes, getting his saddle, talking to other people - and he does this maybe once, or on rare occasion twice.

Mostly I've tried ignoring it, in which case it's over as quickly as it started, and he just puts his ears back up and acts like it never happened.
A couple times he got a little too close with his hind end and I pushed him away/made him move until his ears went back up. Then I let him relax.

During this same time, he's also started being the "big man on campus" out in the field. He used to be mostly a loner or just flit around among other horses, near the bottom of the herd structure. But lately he's kind of ruling the place. The barn manager has been making comments about it.

Under saddle he's an angel. Leading him around he's fine - knows to stay out of my space, listens to what I tell him. He stands well if I drop his rope, I can walk circles around him without him moving.

I'm just worried about this stall thing. I want to put a stop to it before it gets any worse. Any suggestions on the best approach?
     
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    10-24-2011, 01:37 PM
  #2
rob
Weanling
Keep doing what you are doing.it lets him know that you are not intimidated or scared.put a crop in your back pocket, and only if he starts to bite or keeps swinging that tail at you,slap him with it.control this now before it gets worse.
Corporal likes this.
     
    10-24-2011, 02:51 PM
  #3
Yearling
I'm always careful in the stalls, as I have seen people get nailed.

Do you tie him in the stall when you are tacking? I would definitely do that. When I need to tack in a stall, I tie them in the stall and then leave the door to the stall open. That way, they have limited range of motion and can't whirl on you and kick. Plus the door is then open in case you need a fast retreat.

It sounds like you are handling it well, keep on him. But like I said, leave a retreat for yourself, just to stay safe. Confined areas and kicking = injury.
     
    10-24-2011, 06:15 PM
  #4
Weanling
I have been leaving him loose. I have a chain across the door, and leave the door open. He loves hanging his head out watching what's going on in the barn.
Before I hadn't had any issues, so I just left it that way, but if this is going to be a problem then I'm definitely going to have to start tying him.
     
    10-24-2011, 09:51 PM
  #5
Super Moderator
I used to lease a horse that would sometimes get crabby when I passed or entered his stall. What I did was kick the wall or the door the instant he made a sour face to interupt that line of thinking. He'd jump a bit and then put ears forward, having completely forgotten his thought and now interested in what was going down here. So, I'd pet him real casual like, scuffle around (no *****footing) and leave pretty easy.
     
    10-25-2011, 10:32 AM
  #6
Showing
If a horse should start pinning it's ears, my first reaction is a hand up like a stop sign and Ahh!. Not loudly, just abruptly to get his attention. That usually ends it.
     
    10-25-2011, 12:17 PM
  #7
Yearling
I have noticed that a lot horses that are allowed to have their heads hanging outside of the stalls, turn aggressive with other horses and people. While there are fewer aggressive when they are not allowed seem to have outside of a stall. When ever I have stalled I make sure that the my horse has all the doors closed so he can't hang his head out.

When a horse goes from pasture to being in a stall they get confined, stressed and restless. Then they take out their energy and frustrations on what ever happens to be passing by.
     
    10-25-2011, 12:42 PM
  #8
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shenandoah    
Recently my boy has started pinning his ears when he's in his stall. He's only been stalled for a little over a month now - prior to that he'd been pasture boarded his entire life (he's 6, I've had him 1 year now). But even with a stall, he's in about 2 hours/day, one for breakfast one for dinner - the rest of the time is on pasture with a herd of 6.

Just the last week or so he's started pinning his ears at anyone who comes towards his stall, but then puts his ears back up as soon as they get close.

I groom and tack him in his stall, and mostly he just lets me come and go, but occasionally he's started pinning his hears, squealing, and kicking his heels up a bit (only maybe an inch - just a threat, so far - I don't want it to escalate to more than that)...
Mostly I've tried ignoring it, in which case it's over as quickly as it started, and he just puts his ears back up and acts like it never happened.
A couple times he got a little too close with his hind end and I pushed him away/made him move until his ears went back up. Then I let him relax.

During this same time, he's also started being the "big man on campus" out in the field. He used to be mostly a loner or just flit around among other horses, near the bottom of the herd structure. But lately he's kind of ruling the place. The barn manager has been making comments about it.

I want to put a stop to it before it gets any worse. Any suggestions on the best approach?
Yes, you do. He is an aggressive horse (personality) and will bully the herd as he has begun to bully you.
The herd leader needs to be the best behaved horse in the barn. My original herd leader (6 horses in that herd) was a spastic, troublesome horse to handle and ride, and he would frequently blow off steam by making the others run and picking on the weakest members (an older mare and a pony.) When I bought my best herd leader, a 15 yo QH/TWH cross who looked like a fuzzy, palomino milquetoast, who anybody could ride and had TB pony horse in his resume, I put up a temporary fence for him bc I thought my leader was going to beat him up. The next morning morning the fence was down, "Tyke" had taken over, eveybody was calmed down and my previous leader, "Dusty" was cowering in the corner. Tyke would let the mare and pony eat with him and he ended up being the toughest horse I have ever owned or ever witnessed--EVERY horse he came across backed down to HIM! (just an aside)
It is NEVER acceptable for your horse to ever kick at you. He's behaving as if you are another horse. If he kicks another horse, that horse will move away and graze someplace else. If he kicks YOU with the same force your leg or arm will break. I also suggest carrying a short whip that you can slip into your boot and have it at the ready. Next time he kicks at you, smack him on the leg and teach him the word, "NO!" (This will come in handy in the future, too.) His attitude WILL improve as you establish authority. Don't let him become a "Dusty", who was a little monster. BTW, he got loose after I sold him to somebody else, ate 1/2 a storage can of grain and died of colic. Your horse needs to be obedient in every way, if you want him to live a long and productive life.
     
    10-25-2011, 01:18 PM
  #9
mls
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakotababii    
I'm always careful in the stalls, as I have seen people get nailed.
Which is why we don't encourage tacking in the stalls. There is simply no escape. Unless the stall is huge, you will have to walk under the horse's head or around his hindquarters in close proximity to correctly tack the horse.

I believe the stall is where they are allowed down time. Eat and sleep. I may do a quick grooming once in a while but I try to not bother them in the stall.
     
    10-25-2011, 08:42 PM
  #10
Weanling
Thanks all.
Today there was one ear pin and I used a sharp "Uh uh!" and that stopped him. He didn't even get as far as raising his head. No squealing or threatening kicks at all.
So today was a good day. Time will tell if he's going to try any more, so thanks for all the tips and tricks to try and make sure it stops before turning into a major deal.

And Corporal, he always WAS the best behaved horse in the barn until he started this a week or so ago. The barn manager has always commented on how good he was. This stuff all just started up recently.
     

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