what do you do with a horse that DOES NOT want you on its back - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
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what do you do with a horse that DOES NOT want you on its back

i have been working with horses for a while... and have trained and broken many... recently i have come upon a customers horse that has me stumped... she is perfect of the ground... she joins up.. follows me... backs without me touching her... moves away and to me... and is very calm... she will stand to mount and dismount... as soon as you ask her to do something, she either balks up and rears... OR runs to the nearest wall, absolutely crushes your leg, and tries to sit down on you, almost as if shes trying to flip over backwards on the wall to try to get you off.... i have NEVER seen a horse that doesnt want you on its back so bad... she has all the respect in the world in hand... but as soon as shes goes undersaddle its awful... any advice?? i just dont even know where to begin
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post #2 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by mackenziemarchman View Post
i have been working with horses for a while... and have trained and broken many... recently i have come upon a customers horse that has me stumped... she is perfect of the ground... she joins up.. follows me... backs without me touching her... moves away and to me... and is very calm... she will stand to mount and dismount... as soon as you ask her to do something, she either balks up and rears... OR runs to the nearest wall, absolutely crushes your leg, and tries to sit down on you, almost as if shes trying to flip over backwards on the wall to try to get you off.... i have NEVER seen a horse that doesnt want you on its back so bad... she has all the respect in the world in hand... but as soon as shes goes undersaddle its awful... any advice?? i just dont even know where to begin
First thing to try: Take your hand and run your fingers along her spine from the base of her neck to the base of her tail, pushing down firmly but it doesn't have to be as hard as you can. If she flinches at any point like you hit a nerve, that'll tell a big part of the story. Once you've ruled that out, there are about a million and a half things it could be lol. Most likely having to do with some missing piece in her preparation for being ridden.
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post #3 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:12 PM
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Just don't let her do it. If you need to whack her with a whip/crop to keep her from the wall, then by all means do it. She's not going to magically become as perfect as she is inhand.

I might check for any pain or uncomfortableness that would cause a fit, such as the saddle not fitting, back pain, etc. Anything that could possibly be too much for this horse and cause her to have such a strong reaction. If there's nothing wrong, it's probably just habit at this point, because she's gotten away with it so many times by no one sticking with it and riding her out.

Just keep the sessions short (hopefully? lol) and easy. If you get a few good steps in, be done and let her rest without someone on her or do something that she enjoys.
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post #4 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:14 PM
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Yes, check for pain or any tight muscles and saddle fit, etc.

Then consider this. Maybe she's found a loophole in everyone's plan to ride her. She rears or bulks.. and what happens? Oh they get off, or maybe they freeze themselves and do nothing, or maybe they're scared of her.

I'm not sure exactly what this loophole is, but she has found it.

Have you dealt with a rearer before? Baulking is a little bit easier to work with but can escalate as well... I've dealt with the wall-scraper. That's never fun.

Fix that hole or find someone else to.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #5 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:23 PM
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Yes, check for pain or any tight muscles and saddle fit, etc.

Then consider this. Maybe she's found a loophole in everyone's plan to ride her. She rears or bulks.. and what happens? Oh they get off, or maybe they freeze themselves and do nothing, or maybe they're scared of her.

I'm not sure exactly what this loophole is, but she has found it.

Have you dealt with a rearer before? Baulking is a little bit easier to work with but can escalate as well... I've dealt with the wall-scraper. That's never fun.

Fix that hole or find someone else to.
He needs Paul Williamson. That dude is invincible.


Btw I have a cure for the wall-scrapers. All you have to do is stick your hand out and push off of whatever your horse is too close to. It doesn't require much strength and will automatically cause the horse to step away to keep his balance. Works every time.
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post #6 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:33 PM
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Btw I have a cure for the wall-scrapers. All you have to do is stick your hand out and push off of whatever your horse is too close to. It doesn't require much strength and will automatically cause the horse to step away to keep his balance. Works every time.
Haha I used my leg and she was so confused... why do I keep bouncing off of the wall? So she'd try again.. nope.. eventually it got to be too much work for her so she stopped.

But always open to new ways! Gonna watch that movie too!

EDIT: Umm this is kind of embarrassing, but that is how I bailed off of Sky the last near-fall when he blew through my aids and began to attempt to bolt. Except I kept hanging on his neck and dug my feet into the arena sand to give him resistance and he eventually stopped. And I did get back on and school the tar out of his canter. But yeah.. ha

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"

Last edited by Skyseternalangel; 04-30-2012 at 06:39 PM.
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post #7 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:37 PM
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Haha I used my leg and she was so confused... why do I keep bouncing off of the wall? So she'd try again.. nope.. eventually it got to be too much work for her so she stopped.

But always open to new ways! Gonna watch that movie too!
I never thought to use my leg, that's a good one. I'm going to try that now.
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post #8 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mackenziemarchman View Post
i have been working with horses for a while... and have trained and broken many... recently i have come upon a customers horse that has me stumped... she is perfect of the ground... she joins up.. follows me... backs without me touching her... moves away and to me... and is very calm... she will stand to mount and dismount... as soon as you ask her to do something, she either balks up and rears... OR runs to the nearest wall, absolutely crushes your leg, and tries to sit down on you, almost as if shes trying to flip over backwards on the wall to try to get you off.... i have NEVER seen a horse that doesnt want you on its back so bad... she has all the respect in the world in hand... but as soon as shes goes undersaddle its awful... any advice?? i just dont even know where to begin

I've checked her back, mouth, and legs... Nothing
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post #9 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 07:09 PM
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I've checked her back, mouth, and legs... Nothing
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Have her owners had a chiro out ever?

I recently found this video by stumbling on DRichmond's post
https://www.youtube.com/user/HolisticHorseWorks#g/u

It's long but worth watching as it could be very helpful to you.

Otherwise I think she needs someone who can handle staying on her and pushing her past these difficulties without ending up seriously hurt.

Rearing is very dangerous. Are you equipped with experience to handle this horse? Be honest with yourself.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #10 of 51 Old 04-30-2012, 07:21 PM
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OK - first I would have a chiro check the horse, maybe even a horse acupuncturist...

Then I woudl break it to harness. There are so many good riding horses out there, put this one in front of a cart and be done with being on its back.
MN Tigerstripes, Cherie and boots like this.
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