Possessive mare, need advice - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 12-17-2011, 06:00 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2011
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Possessive mare, need advice

Hi everyone, new to the boards and looking for some advice from more experienced horse owners. This is my first time owning a horse of my own, so this is still a relatively new realm I'm getting accustomed to. I know a fair bit about the behaviour of these animals given my background and what I study, but there are some things I still would like to know in terms of working with them and specifics. So here I am!

We got a very sweet young horse and she's a doll and we're having no trouble with her. I'm getting along bonding with her quite nicely, loves to be groomed, she is not the problem.

The place where she is being boarded has several other horses, and one very bossy, possessive and BIG mare, no doubt in my mind she's the leader here! The first day I brought our horse over, the "leader" immediately took to her and would not let any of the other horses even near her. Now that its about a week later, she is still following her and fussing about with her. The bossy one nips at the younger geldings so that our horse can get first pick at the hay and follows her all day, not letting her out of her sight. It's almost like she's "mothering" her. But anyway, getting our horse out of the field is a huge hassle. She comes over no problem at all, but the bossy mare goes BESERK as soon as we lead her out and out of her sight. She runs up and down the fence line, nostrils flaring and ears perked straight up, whinnying and carrying on. She runs straight into the other horses like they don't even exist, she's just completely focused on our horse the entire time. It is sometimes scary when we are taking the horse out of putting her back into the paddock. One time I thought she was going to jump straight over the fence or just tear it right down. I'm scared about what she would do if she actually did get out, or if someone were to ride our horse (she isn't being ridden yet). Since we are new to this place ourselves, I'm wondering if we should also gain the bossy one's trust as well just so that she doesn't completely ignore us when this happens. But how?? I'll admit that she does scare me when she's antsy like this. And I know our horse would feed of off this, she spooks sometimes when the bossy one starts whinnying outside.

What can I do to calm this horse down? When she gets going, she does not listen and looks straight past you. Will she settle down in time? Is it because our horse is still the newbie?


Last edited by kitten_Val; 12-26-2011 at 06:07 PM.
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post #2 of 5 Old 12-17-2011, 06:05 PM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Germany- but not German =D
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Just leave them. It'll settle- if not then no worries.

The only thing I would work on is the gate, you don't want loose horses, but speak to the horse owner first and work together.
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post #3 of 5 Old 12-17-2011, 06:14 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Missouri
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Agree with Duffy... some horses are super possessive like that and will NOT be okay once their buddy leaves. It's a process. As long as you let that mare know YOU rank above their little love fest, then all will be well.

It'd be nice if that mare could get some hay or something to keep her mind busy.. maybe talk to the owner/BO ?
Skyseternalangel is offline  
post #4 of 5 Old 12-17-2011, 07:42 PM
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Inform the BO of the situation just so she's aware. Beyond that, it's not your problem except to where it concerns your safety. Keep an eye on the mare and be ready to run her off by swinging a leadrope or whatever to protect yourself.
bubba13 is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old 12-18-2011, 09:57 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
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It's a slow process but walk your horse briefly out of sight then walk her back so the mare can see her, than leave again. You may have to do this for an hour, each time going slightly farther and returning. What is happening is the mare goes into extreme stress, then release, stress, release. Because of all adrenalin she has been producing, she will settle down. It's the yo-yo effect.
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