Okay, so recently I started riding a new horse. For the past week or so I’ve only been taking him around the trail every few days because he’s been out of work for a while and I want to slowly introduce him back into it. Every time we come to a particular section of the trail where we fork off onto another path to head back home, he spooks. AT NOTHING! He suddenly lunges forward, does a little buck, and then starts dancing around like a maniac until I manage to assure him that all his body parts are still intact and that whatever he thinks is trying to attack him is gone. I can’t see anything that could cause him to spook, and he’s been around those trails enough times to know them by heart. I told his owner about this and she says that “He never usually spooks. He’s probably only being silly”. So… am I doing something wrong? Is there a big scary monster lurking in the trees that only he can see?
If anyone has any suggestions about how I could desensitize him to ‘the scary corner’ I would appreciate it!
Also, I didn’t think I would ever have to say this about a horse but… how do I make his walk slower? Yes, that’s right, slower. I’ve ridden many-a-horse who have had faulty acceleration pedals when it comes to their paces, but when I take this horse out on the trail it’s like he’s stuck in turbo-drive. He walks VERY fast, especially when he knows we’re heading towards home, and it’s frustrating because instead of being able to enjoy the ride I’m spending all my time concentrating on making sure he doesn’t break out into a trot when I don’t want him to!