scared or naughty ?? misbehaving mare - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 12-02-2011, 08:50 AM Thread Starter
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scared or naughty ?? misbehaving mare

Hi recently bought a 9 year old IDX mare two weeks ago she was backed at the age of 4 and unused realy untill recently when she was ridden bareback across the moors and used for gathering too. When she first came to the yard she was brilliant seemed very confident and forward going hack only jumped when a car poped out from behind a corner but nothing bad. She has been with me two weeks now and i ride her out 1/2 times a week with another horse and and 1/2 days in the school but in the last two days she hasnt been herself she is all in good health so its not a physical problem. I have never been able to get on from the ground so need a leg up but lately she just wont stand still she walks off and even swings her bum out away from me so i have a fight to try and get up when i am eventually up i can feel that shes on edge and ready to go so i have to hold her back a little she wont halt when i ask for it either if i lightly pull on the reins she will get stroppy and walk backwards or in circles i dont know whats happened has anyone got any advice i would realy appreciate it xxx
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post #2 of 7 Old 12-02-2011, 09:18 AM
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This sounds like a respect issue. She is trying to test you and assert dominance over you, I would do lots and lots of groundwork. Get her feet moving and get her listening to you. She needs to learn that you are the boss and she is not.
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post #3 of 7 Old 12-02-2011, 09:18 AM
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Although this mare was started under saddle about 5 years ago, it sounds like she is still very green and has not been given a good foundation. You don't mention your own riding experience, but because you are asking for help with this situation, I suspect you are also "green". The only way your horse can communicate is through her behaviour. She is not being "naughty". She is showing that she is stressed and not enjoying being ridden.

There can be several causes for your mare's behaviour. It could be because of a physical pain or discomfort being caused by ill-fitting tack, her teeth needing to be floated, muscle or joint soreness, or a chiropractic issue. Some of these physical problems are not apparent in a routine vet exam. A massage therapist or chiropractor can identify problem areas, if there are any. Another cause of her behaviour can be how she is being ridden - any tension, stiffness, imbalance or crookedness in the rider negatively affects the horse. The more sensitive the horse is, the more she will be affected by even a small amount of these problems in the rider.

Has anyone else ridden your mare since you got her? If not, ask a more experienced rider or a trainer to ride her and see how she goes. Get help from an experienced trainer who can help determine the root cause of your mare's behaviour and then work with both you and your mare to develop a better partnership.

You might find this article helpful

Last edited by AnneGage; 12-02-2011 at 09:25 AM. Reason: Adding a link.
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post #4 of 7 Old 12-02-2011, 09:44 AM
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Sounds as thought she was started late ib life and not in the proper way. Maybe things were rushed and she's confused being as she's never been ridden regularly in 9 years. Best thing to do with a horse like that is start from scratch and act as though she knows nothing. This can sometimes and most the time ib ny experience fix a lot of problems or holes in training.
Start from the ground up, get her respecting you do lots of ground work teaching her how to move her body forwards, backwards, left and right, teach her to yield her hind quarters and forequarters all that stuff.
If you teach her how to move off pressure on the ground first it will be easier undersaddle.
Also teach her how to flex her head/neck horizontally by getting her to touch her belly, because horizontalI flexion is thea key to vertical flexion. then when you finally do mount her you should flex her for a few min so that she doesn't think that as soon ad you mount that means go. She needs to learn patience.
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post #5 of 7 Old 12-02-2011, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
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Some very good points thanks guys will give some more groundwork a go with her its probably me being so excited over new horse wanting to get out hacking and all that i need to take a step back and re-educater her b4 i get too carried away expecting too much lol i suppose she needs to settle into a new home and herd too a lot going on for her right now :)
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post #6 of 7 Old 12-03-2011, 02:56 AM
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It's not the normal time of year for a mare to be in season, but with a sudden change of behavior, it could be she is cycling.
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post #7 of 7 Old 12-03-2011, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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Funny you should say that i know its not the usual time for a mare but i did discover yesterday that she is infact in season and thought this could have something to do with her strange turn took her to the sand school thismorning to do some groundwork and join up at first she was quite explosive but after aboout half hour was a complete sucess a big fat 11/10 lol
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