Respecting space - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 11:27 PM Thread Starter
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Respecting space

Hi, I am a first time horse owner, and bought a 11yr old "kid broke" gelding. He is very laid back and I haven't had any problems with him under the saddle yet. But sometimes when I am leading him he will rush past me or go thru his pen gate the same time as I do and bump me out of the way. This tells me he doesn't respect my space. I have watched videos of teaching him with lead rope and halter. However, when I swing the lead rope to get his feet moving he just stands there and looks at me. Sometimes not even at me. Is there a way to get him moving without hitting him with the lead rope? I read that you should never hit your horse because you do not want him to respect you out of fear. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 11:29 PM
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Whoever told you that you don't get respect out of fear is right - to a certain extent. At first, yes, the horse has to believe that you will force him into place - watch how a lead horse in a paddock herd will keep everyone in line with teeth and hooves. The horse doesn't have to fear YOU, just what you will DO if he invades your space. So yes, I would use the end of the leadrope to force him back out and make him pay attention, and if swinging it near him didn't do it, he would definitely get it slapped against him.

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post #3 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 11:33 PM
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You have to be calm and assertive, Chiilaa gives good advice..Good luck
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post #4 of 9 Old 11-27-2012, 11:46 PM
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Opinions vary. I'd guess He was a kids horse. Lots of times mom/ dad/ hand end up doing chores, they only get caught for riding. Ground manners go south and you Have a pushy pony. (I call them all ponies unless age or sex is necessary). You mention getting his feet moving, I assume you meen in circles? I do understand that school of thought, but, took a hoove to the gut once ( only once, it was like the movies! Me flying through the air. Funny now, hurt then). Never lunge circles on a lead! Just don't. I know you can but dont! I'm gonna assume things from this point on, it's easier to tell me I'm wrong that way ;) I assume he's broke western, probly from rodeo or contesting family. Hell never turn his but towards you enough for you to get him lounging. He was trained that way. Back him. Every time he thinks of passing you. Every time! You're gonna spend a day. Don't be nice. Make him back. He will. He knows it. Once you get him respecting u in a lead, riding will be awesome! I can try to help you withe the backing etc.. If you'd like, but don't want to type a novel.
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post #5 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 12:04 AM
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you don't hit a horse, in a way, yes. I mean you don't just walk up to a horse and hit it. But, if you are asking it to move over, and you are twirling the rope and moving toward the horse, and the horse does't move, then he kind of runs into the rope, by virtue of him not moving away from the "fire", he gets burned. All horses have enough sense to move away from a twirling rope, IF they know it WILL bump them and it will feel bad/hurt a bit.

So, you will likely have to let the rope run into your horse. YOu ask him to move back? well you have the lead tail in your left hand and the lead line in your right (in this example, you are on his left) and you are backing up and putting some tugs on the linel, and holding that line out in front and twirling it around like a propeller. as you back up, if horse does not back up , too, the propeller gets closer and closer to his nose. If he does't back up, he gets nose bopped. you keep twirling, bop or not, until he backs up a step. Stop all pressure, and rest.

Rinse and repeat. start with asking by the lead rope (no twirling) then add in twirling that is out in front, and you back up, and the propellor is like a wall, advancing on the hrose. IF he does't back up, it runs into him. he does not see it as YOU hitting him.
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 12:10 AM
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You do not have to hit him. Just jerk the lead-rope hard two or three times if he tries to go past you or bumps into you. Jerk him hard, face him and make him back up 3 or 4 steps.

One thing that helps a lot (and something I teach every child or novice adult I work with) is to turn every horse to the right every time you turn it or head a different direction. I do not ever let a horse walk past me or around me. I am always in the position to 'push' a horse ahead of me to the right. This reinforces every single time a horse is handled that the handler is in charge and not the horse.

You do not have to hit or be mean to a horse. You just have to let him know every single day that you are the leader and he is the subordinate. When you step him and push him toward the right, it should be on a light/loose lead line. A bump or small jerk is far more effective than a steady push. You can never out-push a horse, but a small jerk or two will encourage a horse to step away from you and let you be the leader.

It is an everyday work that is always in progress.

Please, please do not chase a horse around to make him mind. All he will just learn is to barge forward. You will be much better served by teaching him to slow down and back off.
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post #7 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 12:17 AM
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I would jerk hard on the lead rope and then back him up and then make him stay back by jerking the lead rope until he moves back.....some can be pretty stubborn about backing out of your space because that is the ultimate "I give" to a horse, once he stands back and stays back try walking ahead with him and if he gets in your space repeat that.....eventually he will figure out it's uncomfortable to be up in your space and stay back.
My mare is really sensitive and if I stop or back quickly while leading her she backs with me.....all my horses are good with respecting my space while leading and this is how I taught them to keep out of my space.....I am the leader, not them.....
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post #8 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 12:24 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you

Thanks everybody, I was uncertain about a slap with the lead rope being mistaken as "hitting". I know horses have tough hides. And will try this if he starts to push past me again. I have seen him with the other horses and they are way rougher on him then I would be. He's kind of the low man on the totem pole but very sweet.
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-28-2012, 12:29 AM
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giving the horse a whack with the end of your lead will not hurt them and sometimes there are some horses that get so pushy that is what it takes to get them to respect you and not run you over....
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