Join Date: May 2009
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Agreed with above posters. You only have "immediately" after an action to act in a frenzied, emotional matter - hollering, screaming, waving arms, stamping feet, anything you're choosing to do to make it clear as day that you are very very very displeased!
Think of it this way - in a herd, if a troublemaker colt bites the lead mare, her retaliation is instant - slam him with a hoof, spin and take a chunk out with your teeth. If they're amongst other horses in a way that she can't immediately get to him, does she wait half a minute and then charge him out of the blue? Nope, as long as he's moved out of her space, she'll wait patiently til the next time!
If the reaction cannot be IMMEDIATE (I see a time rule as being silly), then all you have left is a training session where you CANNOT become emotional or frenzied because they will have no clue why. My Arab mare kicked my boyfriend when she was 2, he was leading her. She managed to get away when he went flying through the air, and it probably took me a minute or two to catch her. Instantly, this is no longer a window of punishment. This is training. I calmly and without any verbal sound grabbed my "popper" crop and basically started spanking her hind end until she faced me, several times until all I had to do was walk behind her to make her face me. I didn't beat her, I wasn't emotional, she just got escalating force until she understood that when I am working with you, you don't get to point your hind end at me. Of course, we did a ton of ground work as well so she understood running out in front of someone isn't allowed either. It's been 9 years and she hasn't kicked since!
I think you handled it well, I would just drop any notion of "time" out of your head. Time means absolutely nothing to horses, and I don't believe for an instant that any of us scientifically know exactly "how long" you have for a horse to associate punishment with behavior because just like children, every horse is different!
I hope God tells her to smash her computer with a sledgehammer.