Suggestions Please - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 01-21-2010, 01:57 PM Thread Starter
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Suggestions Please

I was wondering how do you tell someone that they are being rude/ disrespectful to their horse?

Heres the story.

There is a girl out at my barn who rides a wonderful but very sensitive arabain mare. I don't me like side sensitive but emotionally very sensitive. If you know what Im getting at. The girl and her horse have been riding together for a very long time probably 5 or more years easily. The girl came to my barn about 1 1/2 to 2 years ago and what always very respectful and kind to her horse but now Im noticing that she isnt anymore. She is not abusive mean but sometimes I think she walks the line.

Like the other day I asked her if she wanted to come out riding with me because we are the same age and I was going out riding anyways. Well she decided she wanted to ride and came out with me. We started riding and everything was going fine until her horse started acting up. Not like bucking rearing kind of acting up the mare was just simply hot because she hadnt been ridden a few weeks. So the girl you know just laughed it off at first but when she realised that it was a problem she needed to solve she started getting angry at her horse. She would kick her, and then if she didnt stop right away or wasnt paying attention she would yank her head around and make her circle (like that was going to get her attention). She would also jerk on her horses face to get her 'attention' back on her. Finally she got so fed up and left. It was just awful to watch and I felt terrible for the horse

This is not the first time that I have seen her act this way before either. When she is schooling for trail she is just as mean and thinks bullying/ beating her horse will get her to do what she wants her to do. Classic example of this can be seen every year at state when she starts beating on her horse during the trail course because the horse didnt to the obstacle exactly. Then the poor horse gets worked up because her owner is and gets even worse. She always leaves the pattern crying and jerking on her horse.

She ALWAYS blames the horse, gosh forbid its her fault. Her mother is just like that to. I hear her always telling people that the mare gets dyslectic and that it isnt her daughters fault.UMMMM excuse me but whos controling the horse? Whats really sick is that the mother is our horse groupl leader in 4-H and tells many impressonable people that story. Her mother also likes to talk down to me but thats besides that point. I know Im young only 17 and don't know everything but that I see I think is wrong and needs to change.

So after all this ranting I want to know how/ if I should tell them what I think?
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post #2 of 7 Old 01-21-2010, 02:14 PM
Join Date: Sep 2009
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Ask her why she thinks she needs to be so heavy handed! In all seriousness, next time you go out there say "Hey! Why don't we switch horses today and go ride, my horse is sort of boring" and then just ride and see how light you can get her mare to be. If she starts getting rough with your horse, you can stop and say "HEY! He doesn't take cues that way, try it like this" and then show her. Does she take lessons? Has she ever taken lessons? It could be possible that she's dumb enough to think that all horses are like the dead-to-the-world school ponies and need to be practically beaten to get them moving.

Have you ever suggested if her horse doesn't cooperate with her that she just....find another horse? Two hot tempers are going to end badly one of these days, and her horse will probably suffer more for it than she will. I personally happen to like hot-blooded breeds, I like the way their personalities are, like the mares, where sometimes she just loses her brain/gets full of herself, and needs some reminding. Of course, I'm patient, and once backed my gelding to the other end of the arena because he didn't want to leave the gate, and thats the only way he would move. Maybe she needs something a little less tempramental, or even just a gelding.

To me though, I would just catch her attention next time her horse is freaking out and she's getting rough, and show her that if she calms down, her horse will calm down sounds to me like she's scared of what will happen if shes not rough with her horse.

Last edited by justsambam08; 01-21-2010 at 02:16 PM.
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post #3 of 7 Old 01-21-2010, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I think that they are a bad pair too. Don't compliment each other very well. But I don't she will ever sell her mare. We both use the same trainer except she only takes lessons before big shows. And I will try your suggestions Thanks again.
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post #4 of 7 Old 01-21-2010, 02:28 PM
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Keep your mouth shut and don't ride with her. She isn't likely to change and you will only cause problems by butting into her business. Don't let her ride your horse either.

There's nothing like the Rockies in the springtime... Nothing like the freedom in the air... And there ain't nothing better than draggin calves to the fire and there's nothing like the smell of burning hair. -Brenn Hill
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post #5 of 7 Old 01-21-2010, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by kevinshorses View Post
Keep your mouth shut and don't ride with her. She isn't likely to change and you will only cause problems by butting into her business. Don't let her ride your horse either.

I agree! You worry about your horse. Let her worry about her horse.

If anything, I would be one to say "Man, I feel bad for your horse" if I see someone punishing their horse out of anger & frustration. That's letting their emotions control their actions when it should be the other way around.

A lot of people don't feel comfortable being up front with others. I'd just keep your mouth shut. Do a lot of smilin' & noddin'. And in the meantime, focus on you & your horse so you can lead by example.

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post #6 of 7 Old 01-22-2010, 04:31 PM
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We Forum members can only make a comment on what you write. To me
the story is only too common. Too many horses have the wrong owners.

The only positive message that has come out of this story is that you have recognised what a bad scenario this is. You have recognised where the girl is going wrong and you now see for yourself that the problem lies with the rider rather than with the horse. Arabs are known to be highly intelligent, very sensitive horses but for some riders they are the wrong breed.

A rider who gets angry has a problem and confessing their fear, which is the root of anger, is the first step towards redemption - but my guess is that will never happen.

What can you do to help? - well be there to pick up the pieces when the inevitable accident happens. Be charitable - after all you know what the problem is. Don't write the young woman off - she knows no better.
But until she confesses her fears, there can be no help for her.

I would never lend my sensitive horse to an insensitive rider.

This is presumably the first time you have come across such a scenario. It will not be the last. Too many people buy the wrong horse for the wrong reasons - but it is an easy thing to do.

Missy, keep your distance. Keep your own counsel. For as long as you are involved in horses then watch and learn. Listen and consider. Ask questions and then make your own judgement.

And whisper in the ear of your own horse how lucky she is to have an owner like you.

Barry G
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post #7 of 7 Old 01-23-2010, 09:19 AM Thread Starter
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Location: Wisconsin
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Thanks Barry that was really sweet. I will some how learn to hold my tounge and practice breathing exercises. Much thanks to everyon who posted also.
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