What else can I do? Training ideas

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What else can I do? Training ideas

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    05-09-2010, 08:27 PM
Green Broke
What else can I do? Training ideas

Finn is a yearling Shire cross so starting work under saddle is several years off. He has impeccable stable/ground manners, will lunge well either direction, backs, pivots on fore and hind, loads in the trailer readily, has been ponied on trails a good bit and will go through water etc, has been desensitized and is completely unphazed by cones/tarps/blowers/clippers/bridges. He ground drives well now, has gotten comfortable in and been lunged with a very light (8 lb) pony saddle, and most recently mastered sidepassing on lead. He learns very, very quick and seems to have a real thirst for learning new things. He's super eager and willing to please, and I want to continue to encourage that trait. I want to be able to keep his skills sharp and continually introduce new things, but I've run out of ideas. The instructor I'm taking english lessons from suggested starting to lunge him in a training surcingle and teach him to set his head, but I've never used one and am hesitant to try without having someone show me safely how to do it.

So I've kind of come to the point where I've taught Finn everything I can think of in terms of groundwork right now, and while we will continue to work on that regularly I'm wondering if anyone has any neat ideas, handy tricks, or fun stuff I can work on with him for a while!
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    05-09-2010, 09:06 PM
Step #1 teach him to trailer
Step #2 say good bye cause I'm coming to get him!!!

Kidding- I think you're smart to stay away from side reins if you don't really know what you're doing with them. Can you hire a trainer to come and show you some things to work on with him? I know you've had a rapidly expanding horse family lately so things may be tight but if you want to move forward with him, it sounds like you could use an experienced person at least to point you in the right direction. And you always have the option to let me steal him... I'll be in Chicago in 5 weeks... lol!
    05-09-2010, 09:08 PM
Yes, trailering's a great idea. Short field trips to the ice cream store to get him used to it. I also would not recommend longeing, at least not a lot of it. He's nowhere near fully developed yet and the constant circling might do far more harm than good.
    05-09-2010, 09:38 PM
Green Broke
Tealamutt, haha funny girl. He does trailer well already, I haven't hauled him anywhere since I sold my trailer (haven't got a new one yet!) but last fall I took him to York Hills Horse Park (6 miles away) to pony out on trails several times. My riding instructor (who also trains) has offered to come out and start him on the surcingle and show me how to do it, so I had intended to take her up on that. I'll ask what other ideas she has for me and if there are things she could show/teach me. Of course finances are always tight, but I want to do everything right with Finn. Thanks for the advice! You know I always put a lot of stock in what you have to say! I'm about 4 hours from Chicago, but if you feel like making the extra trip, I'd love to have you visit. No bringing trailers though, I'll chase you away again *lol*

MyBoyPuck - He actually does trailer well, though as mentioned above it's been several months since I took him anywhere, hope to soon get back into the swing of things! I don't longe him heavily or a lot, either on a 30 ft line or free longing in the round pen. It was more prep for getting into the ground driving, which is primarily what I do with him now. Despite what it sounds like I don't overwork him. I got him as a completely wild two month old and, since he is going to be so big, as soon as he was halter broke I wanted to really concentrate on getting him very responsive and willing while he was still small. From there we have just been going along a baby step at a time. I'm home all day so time with my horses isn't a problem. Thanks for the advice!
    05-09-2010, 09:52 PM
Sounds like you got him pretty well started.

You could teach him to give kisses and shake a hoof. KIDDING. Please don't. LOL

I'd just let him be a horse for a bit. Sounds like you already have him one heck of a start. :)
    05-09-2010, 10:01 PM
The only thing I would suggest is taking him new places. If there is a show nearby or another barn, take him over and walk him around. There is nothing that will help him more with new places than experience. And that is good experience to have...
    05-09-2010, 10:42 PM
Green Broke
Sounds like you are doing wonderful with him. Can you come help me with Hunter???
    05-09-2010, 11:01 PM
Green Broke
WSArabians - Haha no worries, those are not the "tricks" I had in mind! I definitely intend to give him more "horse time" this summer - he also went most the winter with only basic handling. But I want to generally be upping the ante on him a bit this year, so we are still making forward progress as well.

Sonnyx12, that's a really good idea, I hadn't even thought of that! My son will be taking Misty to a few 4-H shows this summer, I can bring Finn along for the experience! Thanks!

Hunter65 - thanks! Haha I'm no horse trainer. While I've started a number of 2 year olds under saddle, Finn is my first experience doing everything from the ground up, from the very beginning, so I'm in no way qualified to work with anyone else's horses!
    05-09-2010, 11:54 PM
Halter/Showmanship shows! Even if he doesn't have a hope in heck of winning, it'll be a good place for him to get out and have some fun! :)

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