Issues with picking up legs - Page 2

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Issues with picking up legs

This is a discussion on Issues with picking up legs within the Natural Horsemanship forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Horse putting leg out to side when picking up
  • My pony won't pick up back legs

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    05-18-2012, 12:35 AM
I actually really like the rope technique but I don't pull the rope out to the side,

I simply let the rope act as my hand would if they stand quietly the rope sits in my hand,

if they start throwing legs around the rope creates pressure equal to that they are putting out. I simply stand up straight and it's MUCH easier on my body then holding the leg with my hand.

When they realize it's not working I quietly go back to what I was doing previously.

This makes the right thing easy, the wrong thing hard.

There is no punishment per se and if I had the strength I'd hold with my hand but I don't. Also really handy for back legs to fix a kicking issue.

This won't work for a genuinely fear based issue but the way I read your post the horse is used to having it's legs handled.
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    05-18-2012, 03:43 AM
Green Broke
The reason I suggested standing to the side was for safety, so you don't get kicked. Also, if you stand in front or behind the leg, you could have the rope pulled thru your hands and get a rope burn. Or if you can hang on, you could get pulled or thrown off balance and end up on the ground while the horse is still kicking. Standing out to the side, you can keep steady pressure no matter if the horse moves the leg forward or back.
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    05-18-2012, 03:53 AM
Sorry I misread! I thought you were saying pull the leg out to the side which is what confused me.
    05-18-2012, 04:05 AM
Green Broke
Well you would have to pull some to the side. Not where the leg is sticking outward but enough so the hoof comes off the ground. This can also be a starting point to leading your horse around by the leg or if he would get his leg caught on a wire, that he doesn't need to fight the pressure.
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    05-18-2012, 04:31 AM
Saranda, you should do leg stretches with your boy.

Especially on the hinds (but be careful of course) and that will teach him to relax and give his legs rather than fight to pick them up or be hesitant.

Info on this thread
Stretches (and muscle building) for your horse

Sky is a huge fan, so I'm guessing your boy would appreciate it too :) Just go nice and slow.
    05-18-2012, 04:51 AM
Super Moderator
Thanks for advice, Sky! And I am actually already doing leg stretches for him, as our chiro suggested - in fact, he really enjoys his hind legs (and also tail) being stretched, but is still somewhat fighting about the front legs. When I pick up a hind leg and start stretching it, he becomes very relaxed and happy about it, but starts showing attitude as soon as he feels I am going to pick or soak his hooves. Smart boy, heh.

As for his front feet, it is partially a soreness (the ongoing battle with thrush, frog and bar problems) and balance issue, but we're working on it. Last time I soaked his front feet he seemed to have become a bit more patient about the procedure. His reactions are not those of fear, though, that's a thing I'm quite sure about. He also leads with ropes around his legs quite easily. Altogether he is a smart and disciplined horse, but I feel that this problem we're speaking about here is going to be a good challenge for me and also Snickers.
    05-18-2012, 05:15 AM
Yeah as stated earlier, soaking can be daunting.. but a nice handful of grain afterwards helps smooth things over ;)

Are you putting anything on to treat the thrush?

I've been dealing with the same issue and we've been doing NoThrush and it's working really well.
    05-18-2012, 05:28 AM
Super Moderator
Yes, I use TH5 and Apple cider vinegar for soaking, and I just started using...just don't laugh...Listerine mouthwash. It is actually quite common as a thrush treatment because of its' anti-fungal ingredients, and also quite effective. I rub it in the thrush areas after soaking. Snickers also gets to walk on varied surfaces, including hard, and gets good barefoot trimming that has already made a huge improvement, comparing to his condition when I got him.

He gets a nice bucket of veggies, herbs and apple cider vinegar after the tormenting nightmare of soaking. :)

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