the "yellow" horse - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 05-29-2008, 05:24 PM Thread Starter
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the "yellow" horse

I'm curious....there's this one horse at the barn and he's completely "yellow" (or frightened of everything, from mud, to lead ropes, to saddles, to birds). At first he was getting alot better but now he's horrible.

I was working with him on going over a verticle with some flowers underneath...he pulled out and once I got my feet back in the stirrup I made him do a circle and go back to the jump...yet again he pulled out.... when I went to make him do a circle he totally paniced and reared up. Scary actually hehe.

So I got him to do a circle afterwards then got off him and went to "try" to lunge him over the jump to get his fear away. Well he would NOT let me get close to him. I wasn't yelling at hi, nor was I running at him or approaching him too quickly...but he'd toss his head up and back up and not let me even get close to him.

I kept trying the "retreat" method...I'd turn and walk away...and then try to approach again...but still he wouldn't let me get close.

I finally got his bridle off and let him run for a while (he just did it himself) and after that he'd let me put his bridle back on...but he would not walk with me.

I grabbed a crop and gently gave him a tap on the shoulders and said "walk on" but he just froze there.

After probably 20 minutes of coaxing and pulling he finally came.

What are some ways to help him get over his fear on everything? To teach him to listen better both while leading and in the saddle? And get him not herd bound (yes he's herd-bound also....we've tried seperating, but it didn't work)?

I've tried parelli with him...but he wouldn't let me get close to him with the carrot stick...infact he broke one of the parelli halters :roll:

Any ideas?
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post #2 of 10 Old 05-29-2008, 06:20 PM
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yellow horse

I have arabs and if you ask them, everything is a monster. I've found the best way to get them over it is to walk them up to it and wait until they touch it with their nose. It may not work with everything, but I've gotten some of my horses over the fear of vehicles, leaf blowers, tractors, etc. Be patient and let him figure out that these things will not hurt him. I'm usually on the ground when I do this.

Do not go where the path may lead-Go instead where there is no path and leave a dusty trail.
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post #3 of 10 Old 05-29-2008, 06:21 PM Thread Starter
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well his problem is he won't even go close to it, let alone touch his nose to it
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post #4 of 10 Old 05-29-2008, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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Also, I don't know if he was abused before the BO got him...but he's not trusting of people at all...and hates to be ridden
He will occasionally tolerate it but usually he'll be horrible.

He doesn't have any Arab in him at all from what I know of...he's a Paint
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post #5 of 10 Old 05-29-2008, 06:30 PM
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who looks after him and how often?
A horse like that needs ONE person to have look after them and build up the trust, misty was like that, only I could catch her and she was scared of everything. You have to be patient really
And possibly a stronger rider, like take no nonsense and have no fear , when he pulled out, instead of circling pull on the opposite rein to the one which he ran out and jump it from a stand still, or set the jump up so he can only run out one way, for example left, then keep your right rein short ;)

A good horse can never be a bad colour...
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post #6 of 10 Old 05-30-2008, 12:03 AM
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Some horses are just like that. You need to be very patient but firm at the right moments - some horses will take advantage of their "fears."

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post #7 of 10 Old 05-30-2008, 02:00 AM
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Originally Posted by moomoo
who looks after him and how often?
A horse like that needs ONE person to have look after them and build up the trust, misty was like that, only I could catch her and she was scared of everything. You have to be patient really
And possibly a stronger rider...
I think this is really good advice. This horse needs a person who is his safe place, to be his leader...

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post #8 of 10 Old 05-30-2008, 02:25 AM
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A extremely spooky horse isnt nessisarily a result of an abused past. He very well may have not been exposed properly to many of the things he faces now. Leading a very sheltered life before hand could have resulted in how he behaves now.

Also has his eye sight ever been tested?

As even if he runs around on his own doesnt suggest there is nothing wrong with his sight. I volunteer in an animal shelter and over the past couple weeks have been playing with a completely blind kitten, and its remarkable what it can do relying totally on its other sences, at some points it didnt even seem blind, ( but it deffinelty is ).

But i also agree with what MooMoo said

But i would like to add, with a horse like that i would take it very slow. Focus totally on having fun, keeping pressure of it and building a bond with it....i wouldnt look at really ' working ' it....just my opinion. :)
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post #9 of 10 Old 05-30-2008, 03:56 AM
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Is he food-motivated at all?

My Paint is fairly spooky like you describe. He grew up on a private farm with acres of grass and one other mare...for 8 years. He wasn't exposed to much and when I brought him to my boarding barn, he was scared of everything. BUT, he loved treats.

I spent a few days just hanging out with him around the property, bonding and being his alpha mare. When he spooked at something, I'd stay calm, and unzip my pocked (full of treats). When he calmed (even the slightest), I'd give him a treat and say "good boy." Soon enough, when something scared him, he'd look to me for support, comfort, and of course, a treat.

Some people are against using food rewards for horses. Some horses can get pushy or nippy. My horse has always been very polite with treats...and I'd much rather have him dive his nose into my pocket when he's scared than throw up his head and run off bucking!

Of course, all this only has worked for ground work.

My horse too, was afraid of things in the arena such as your flowerbox jump (or our mounting block). I just turned him out in the arena a few times and let him inspect everything on his own. I sat on our mounting block and even though he was terrified of it, he still came up to the sound of my unzipping treat pocket to snag a snack!

Wow, I'm writing a novel. But I also agree with moomoo that your Paint may just need some consistent one-on-one training in order to trust you.
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post #10 of 10 Old 05-30-2008, 09:00 AM
Green Broke
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I agree with Bitless, how's his eye sight?

There was a very spooky arab at the lesson barn I used to teach at. He was afraid of the lines in the arena dirt that were caused by dragging the arena . With that, I just lunged him over and over until he was relaxed...he tried for 30 minutes to **not** touch the ground :sigh: He had a vision issue, and was actually mostly blind, bless his heart.

Justin (qh/tb)
Boo (asb)
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