Should I Let the Horse Fall? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 06:59 PM Thread Starter
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Should I Let the Horse Fall?

This is a follow-up question which goes along with my other thread about Where to Start with a Spoiled Horse...

She does not like to pick up her feet.

She will lean all of her weight on that leg - or pick up the foot for a split second and immediately put it down.

One of the games she plays is as soon as I have her foot in my hand, she begins leaning over on the other feet - pulling her foot away and almost falling. I end up dropping the foot and she regains her balance.

I'm wondering if I should just keep ahold of the foot and let her fall?

Leasing a spoiled rotten trail horse...pretty - but a brat!
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post #2 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 07:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daisy25 View Post
This is a follow-up question which goes along with my other thread about Where to Start with a Spoiled Horse...

She does not like to pick up her feet.

She will lean all of her weight on that leg - or pick up the foot for a split second and immediately put it down.

One of the games she plays is as soon as I have her foot in my hand, she begins leaning over on the other feet - pulling her foot away and almost falling. I end up dropping the foot and she regains her balance.

I'm wondering if I should just keep ahold of the foot and let her fall?
Pick a safe area and let her fall.
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post #3 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 07:07 PM
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Yes, I have seen farriers let a horse drop to it's knees if the horse was using that tactic as an evasion. So yea, pick a safe spot & let her fall. Make sure you are well out of the way though.
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post #4 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 07:08 PM
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Yep, when we deal with a horse who is like that we loop a rope around their fetlock(not tied, so we can quickly release) and when they start pulling away we just keep the foot up and if they throw theirself down then so be it. Do it in a safe place though. When Chanti occasionally does this she gets a sharp NO and a firm smack on the chest because she knows better but she likes being a butt head every now and then.
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post #5 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 07:08 PM
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I had a gelding who would do this all the time. He'd rather fall over than have the farrier work on his feet because he still got the release.

Go in a round pen, put a lariat around the foot. Stand from a safe distance. Pull the foot and hold, release when she relaxes. If she fights, hold the pressure steady until she stops. If she does the "falling" thing, let her fall, then as soon as she gets up hold the foot back up again. See how many times she does it. Or you can send her forward as soon as she starts to fall, keeping contact on that foot (very difficult stuff only trainers should be doing). You might need a trainer to help you this route. :/ It was the only thing that stopped my gelding from falling on the farrier and now he's an angel.
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post #6 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 07:31 PM
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I have a mare that does the opposite, she leans onto you. Would this technique workfor her as well?
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post #7 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 07:36 PM
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I have had a few young horses or older spoiled horses try this move, and yes, in a soft area, you will just have to drop the foot at the right time to let them 'fall'. I then will usually work their tails off for a while; if they think it's easier to 'fool around' then, fine...work it is. I do not ever allow a horse lean on me; I physically can't handle it. So they have to learn to behave. Start lifting the foot at short increments...if he behaves, release and praise, if not, drop it, so he 'falls', work him some, and start over.

"The ideal horseman has the courage of a lion, the patience of a saint, and the hands of a woman..."
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post #8 of 9 Old 05-06-2012, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by redpony View Post
I have a mare that does the opposite, she leans onto you. Would this technique workfor her as well?
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You will find that horses that lean do it because you lean into them first. Don't lean on the horse when you pick the foot up. If she leans on you even if your shoulder or hip has not touched her, then growl at her without putting down her hoofpick. If you have a pick that has a brush on one end, use the bristles to push her off you. Don't let her put her foot down though.

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post #9 of 9 Old 05-07-2012, 07:45 AM
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We bought an older spoiled gelding several years ago. He was impossible to handle his front feet at all. [His back ones were ok -- I guess his owner never got the front ones done so they did not mess with his back ones.]

This horse would jerk his feet away after about 3 seconds. If someone was strong enough to hang on to one, he would rear straight up and went over a couple of times. He figured out no one could keep his foot if he did this, We put him in the round pen with an old stock saddle on him. It is pretty deep sand. Then I snapped a lead rope on his pastern. I had a loop tied in the rope about three feet from where it snapped on his pastern. I had about three seconds to get his foot up and put the loop over the saddle horn and get out of the way. He fought it for 10 or 15 minutes. The other front foot took 2 or 3 minutes. He was perfect to shoe after that. I still have him and this was 8 or 10 years later.

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