Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: North Dakota, USA
I'm not a barrel racer/trainer for barrels but I have seen a well known trainer deal with a problem like this. All too often, when training for barrels, the horse is taught to run when there are barrels. What he did was make the rider walk the horse through the pattern many times. Then trot a few times and then back to walking.
Also, he had the rider go around only one barrel at a time and return to the start before the next barrel. That gets them better at listen to what the rider wants instead of doing what it thinks you want.
Personally, I would also have barrels set all over the place. The horse is just associating that the barrels mean to run. Horses are creatures of habit. If you always have the horse run the pattern and only have barrels around when working the pattern, of course they will be ready to run when they see them.
There was a girl at a stable when we first got into horses. She just got a new horse that was very well trained. He would stand still as long as you wanted without being tied. She always wanted to run with him. Several years passed and she started to settle. She went for a ride with us and complained that she wished she could go on just a nice leisurely ride but her horse wanted to run now. Also, he wouldn't stand still anymore. Again, they're creatures of habit. What you do with them is always training them. Whether good or bad.
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Last edited by usandpets; 06-17-2014 at 06:24 AM.