Retraining a Former Bronc - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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Retraining a Former Bronc

If the community will indulge me I'd like to post some videos of myself working with Jack, a horse which I suspect comes from a bucking string somewhere.

Background: I acquired this horse as a project via Craigslist, from a girl who had bought him for a trail riding horse (he was cheap). I'm not sure what the previous owners had told her but the first time I saddled this horse he bucked. So the trail riding wasn't going to work out for her anytime soon. I also noticed that he had a tendency to freeze and then explode, and didn't know much about moving forward when asked. He's also a pullback horse and would rear up when I would go to swing halfway up on him. Though you can catch him and lead him around, he's generally a pretty troubled horse. His expression when introduced to new things is suspicious and his body is tense.

He's also twice-branded, with one of them being the number 012 on his hip. Having a number brand, coupled with the behavior I've observed leads me to believe that he could have been a bucking horse in his old life. Even if he wasn't, his issues are such that I've decided to make him into a long-term project. I'm not into the idea of getting myself killed so this may take awhile.

I suppose that I'll end up keeping this horse in the long run, as I'm sure that by admitting what he's really like I'll probably have a tough time ever selling him. I can live with that though. I'm genuinely curious to see what can be done with him. As for the pace of training, my objective is to take as long as it takes to get the job done. It's more important to me to teach him to do everything he needs to know with an expression of acceptance than to come off looking like a miracle worker and risk losing the little bit that I've accomplished thus far.

Hay siempre manana sin prisal hay siempre manana.

In this first segment, I'm working on getting him better about his feet. He's not too bad to pick them up, but he's quick to become tense if they're held for too long. Though it's getting better every time!

If anyone gets interested in seeing more, I can put further videos up on this thread.

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post #2 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 04:43 PM
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Keep the vids coming!
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post #3 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 05:55 PM
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agreed i love learning different ways or getting better with training in same methods...keep um coming :)
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post #4 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 06:17 PM
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Bucking horses are usually branded with a number. Not sure how old he is, but if he is old he may not buck as hard as he used to. Some stock contractors will take the young horses that don't buck good enough and make pick up horses out of them.

I bought an old saddle bronc horse on accident. His hair layed perfectly over his brand, unless you were on him and turned around to look at his rump. I rode him all day before I realized it. Next day in the arena, asked for a lope...I made three jumps.

Ended up I knew the contractor he belonged to, he said he used to a be great saddle bronc horse, and they used to ride him up in the mountains to go hunting and packed Elk out on him....just don't ask him to lope!

Im intrigued...
I would love to see what you get done with him.
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post #5 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 10:10 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies!

Here's one more. I decided to teach him to pack before I ride him and to see if I could get up to him while he's loose first. It's also good work for Ginger, who hasn't been rode much lately.

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post #6 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 10:29 PM
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I watched the video/but had no sound on my computer, sorry. From what i saw you are doing good with him. I like the calmness you have around him. I think he his doing fine with the hooves being picked up. Gradually add more time that you hold the hoof, and try to release it just before he gets fussy about it. Work with his feet alot and this issue should just get better and better over time. He seemed calm. He seems alittle more uncomfortable with you on his right side, did you know that? So I would work more on that side also. I think the best approach to this horse is too act as though he knows nothing and start from scratch just as you would a horse you are starting, keep working a program that builds on the last day of work, keep that calm composure, I'm sure you will both have a good experience as long as you take your time and work at the horses pace and as is his learning style permits. Good luck to you both. Nice job on the video. happy trails
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post #7 of 16 Old 12-14-2011, 11:05 PM
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I like how patient and stress-free you are with both of your horses. I've actually picked up a few things by watching you interact with Jack. :)
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post #8 of 16 Old 12-15-2011, 07:20 AM
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well done
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post #9 of 16 Old 12-15-2011, 09:49 AM
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I'd like to see more as you do more training with him. From your description of his attitude before to how he is now he's doing great.
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post #10 of 16 Old 12-15-2011, 11:06 AM
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Well, the number is a dead give away. ;) I have one with a 14 branded on her rump. (when they "test" them out, they spray paint a #, when the are used on the circuit, that's when they brand them.) When I got her (at 5yrs) I was told she had been in the bucking string, quit bucking out, was bred and then sent to the sale with her colt. 2 people later, and I ended up with her. She had been lightly "ridden" a couple times I'd been told. A friend of mine got up on her, she planted herself, got a "spanking" on the neck, (they get spurred there) and Oh my, she can BUCK! Sent her out for 30 days, came back a very calm riding horse. The thing of it is though, it really took her a good year to fully trust (on the ground) and learn to bond with me. She's now going on 16, I've bred her twice, and have 2 AWESOME riding horses out of her. She still plants herself from time to time, but that is her. She has a home for life, I made her that promise when I got her. Bucking horses are different, it takes time to get their trust. Be patient, and careful. :) I wish I could watch your videos, but with dial-up (live in boondocks) not possible. Good luck!
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