Re; Help me stop my horse from bolting - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:09 AM Thread Starter
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Re; Help me stop my horse from bolting

Hi

I've got a Friesian that it 6 years old and is very nervous. When me and my mum first got her she was an angel and didn't do a thing wrong. Her previous owner said she had done some driving and riding before but we think it was more driving. Over the past few months she has become more and more nervous and seems to bolt at nearly everything, to the point where I feel very nervous to get back on her and my mum won't even try at the moment.
Is there anything anyone can suggest?
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post #2 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:19 AM
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Get yourself a trainer. If you're nervous, your mum is nervous and your horse is nervous, you are creating a recipe for disaster. Get someone experienced and professional to help you before someone gets hurt.

~Horse & Hound Artistry~.

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post #3 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:25 AM
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A common thing to do would be to "desensitise" her. For example, introducing her to "scary" things like bags, tarp, etc. Also include anything you know that she spooks at. Desensitising horses gets them used to a range of new things and I have found it to make a horse less spooky.
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post #4 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:30 AM
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If the horse was fine at first and has now changed I think you need to reflect on what you are doing to possibly cause this. You need to change what you do to build a trusting relationship so the horse looks to you and not itself to find release. This can be achieved through lots of groundwork, desensitizing, spending time with each other and lots of understanding on how she thinks. Good luck.
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post #5 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:33 AM
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I'm going to agree with Kayty. Not only to fix your horse but to teach you. If she was fine when you got her, she doesn't see you as a leader and is relying on her instincts for her safety.
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post #6 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:35 AM Thread Starter
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These sound like great suggestions. I have spoken to some one and they suggested using a driving bridle on her with blinkers to train her?
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post #7 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarafynney View Post
These sound like great suggestions. I have spoken to some one and they suggested using a driving bridle on her with blinkers to train her?
To me, changing tack is avoiding the problems more than helping to solve it.
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post #8 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:38 AM
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Its all good and well to do hours upon hours of groundwork, but if you are scared of the horse, you're scared of the horse! Like riding, there is good groundwork and bad ground work. Bad groundwork is very much detrimental to a horse's training.

You can also do all the ground work in the world, but nothing is going to prepare a horse for going along a trail and having a plastic bag, rabbit or dog shoot out from the bushes and hit them in the face or go between its legs.
Riders need to learn to deal with spooks, to sit them, remain relaxed, and ride on. Without having this confidence, the spook will just increase in intensity as the horse thinks if the 'leader' on his back is scared, then he DEFINITELY has something to be worried about!
This is why having a good trainer is invaluable, just having those eyes on the ground and someone to bark instruction at you, can give a nervous rider a great deal more confidence than riding on their own.

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post #9 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarafynney View Post
These sound like great suggestions. I have spoken to some one and they suggested using a driving bridle on her with blinkers to train her?

I disagree. Don't look for any equipment for quick fixes. Blinkers will not make her less spooky, if anything they will possibly make her worse because you are taking more of her sight away. Work on deepening your trust with each other by you changing your way of working.
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post #10 of 12 Old 11-28-2011, 07:43 AM
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I would like, but can't at work- Sorry Kayty!

Nervous is a recipe for disaster if its effecting your riding. I would suggest getting help, a trainer will be great to give you a programme to help her develop her knowledge, and for you and your confidence too.

Like Kayty said no amount of desensitising can help you when things pop out of the blue, it needs to be addressed there and then. For any horse to bolt is bad, but for a young horse its more important to show her leadership and that if you're okay, she'll be okay too

Good luck!
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