08-29-2011, 11:56 AM
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Yeah it's a good way, though why set it on a tarp? I think that kind of makes the saddle a little more intense to approach :P Also try the saddle on different levels... ground, chair, fence, really high up..etc.
So if you go near him with a saddle, does he move or is it only when you put it on his back? If it's while you approach, he probably thinks saddle = pain or saddle = work or something negative. So you need to make the saddle something pleasant. Maybe sack him out with the saddle, and offer a little bowl of grain or a flake of hay for taking it. If it's only on his back, my horse did this too.. so I practice putting it high in the air next to him and then patting him before lowering it back down next to him. When he could handle that, I gently set it on his back, wait a second, then take it off before he had a chance to react. You're trying to make the saddle pleasant, and good things happen when he wears the saddle, or even sees the saddle. You want your horse to WANT to work with you, to ride, and just to lead with you.. not whinnying and bolting off the other direction, or offering a kick or two.
What is your opinion about why he is rejecting the saddle?