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This is a discussion on Refusal within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

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    08-12-2007, 12:09 AM

I ride a 8 year old gelding and he is usaully the perfect gentleman.

Well in the past two weeks, only when I'm on his back, he refuses his right lead. Not just cantering...he will not walk or trot in that direction either. He stops and turns or stops and backs up.

But he's an angel on the left side.

Any suggestions as to why? He lunges in the pen on his right side.
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    08-14-2007, 06:30 AM
All horses have a side that they favour over the other. Has he been allowed to get away with not working on the right side at all?
    08-14-2007, 12:52 PM
He could be sore on the right side or he could just be stubborn and you have to show him whose boss. My horse went through a faze like that but she got over very quickly when I started working her harder that way no matter what she did.
    08-14-2007, 03:10 PM
If this just cropped up two weeks ago, I am inclined to go with him being sore somewhere. It could be badly fitting tack. He could have strained something, he could be stiff somewhere. Try to have him looked at, and eliminate soreness.

If tack fits, and he checks out by a vet as not being sore, then I would get more firm with him about the behavior. If you are unfamiliar with dealing with refusals, grab a trusted/knowledgable friend to help; or take a lesson or two just addressing that.

It really depends on the horse as to how you respond to the refusal - different horses require different levels of firmness. What is required to help it sink in with one horse, would traumatize another. On that note; know your horse, and don't let anyone do anything you are uncomfortable with.

Please check for soreness first. You don't want him to feel punished for hurting.
    08-15-2007, 11:31 PM
Its defintally a concern of pain I think. Like sparky said some horses like going on way than the other which is so true, I have a ASH mare that I train and she is fantastic to turn one way but the other she doesn't want to hop around. She has become better though. But always turn to pain as the first concern, get some one that knows about horses to help you out

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