Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Washington, USA.
Let her know you have a spastic elbow. While you're leading her around, you can randomly flail your elbow around [without hitting her.] Eventually, she will think your arm is just totally possessed and won't want to bother it. Seeing as she was mistreated in the past, that may be easier said then done. Is she hand fed at all? Hand feeding can make a LOT of horses super pushy and nippy. What I do with my mare is not give her a treat until she moves her head and looks away from me. She knows when I have a treat and she'll whip her nose around to get it, then realize she won't get it that way and corrects herself, looking straight ahead and eyeballing that treat like she's starving, then I'll give it to her. The trick is just giving the treat to them on your own terms, not letting them take it from you. Biting is a bad habit, and you don't want her to start it [obviously.] If she looks like she is going to bite you or someone, a really sharp "AH!" sound can distract them, but you need to do it before she bites. Depending on her past experiences, it might not be okay to do this, but I ALWAYS bop horses in the nose if they try and bite. It's just something I will not tolerate. Do you have a small round pen or pasture? You can free lunge her. Using your body language, push her away from you and keep her going at at least a trot until she submits. That is, lowered head, licking and chewing, keeping her inside ear on you, etc. It's a very natural process in the horse world, and it will prove your dominance. Some horses catch on quick, others not so quick, so you could keep her at a walk/trot since she's young. You don't want her to over-do it. I hope something I said ends up helping =]
"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."