Can't catch horse - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 03:01 AM
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the above is a better description of what I meant to say ^

I practice trying to get Z to come to me in the field. He will come now, from about 50 ft away. But I sometimes have to be a bit insistent. it is really kind of a fun game.
our horses have 30 acres and currently 14 horses there, so they darn well better be catchable. i'd have trouble actually walking down a horse there that really was determined to run away from me. But, so far, they never run away .
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post #12 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 09:51 AM
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When I go to my horse, I have 2 pieces of carrot: one is for when he comes to me, one after I put the halter on. It's our routine. He knows that. It works for us.
I usually give him carrots either at specific moments, or when he's being difficult with something new, though I try to avoid even this. I don't feed him treats every 2 minutes, so he values them.

I taught the horse the halter/treat thing, when he was so ear-shy he bolted every time I tried. Maybe it's what you should do, teach him that it's a good thing, to have the halter put on.

If you're going to use food treats, pick ones that the horse adores. Grass in a pasture is not really that interesting, now is it?
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post #13 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 10:31 AM
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We are 'borrowing' a pony that is extremely hard to catch. We are going to see if we can work on her not to be.

She normally lives on 2,000 acres of rough terrain so thus shes at our place living with the goats in a small pen. LOL

I though of seeing of we could train her to a whistle but I don't know if thats possible?

She is great pony once caught but the catching her is something else. It took 6 of us 4 hours to catch her on 30 acres on a treed hilly pasture.
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post #14 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 10:42 AM
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3 acres isn't that big, just keep following. Make him walk, walk, walk. He'll figure out is less work to just stop and be caught.
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post #15 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 12:19 PM
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I always feed my horses in their stalls. I call them in and they come running (if I'm late they are waiting at the gate).

Like the other posters have said, it's all how the horse associates you - do you represent hard work, food, a treat? My horses know that every day I call them and they get let in their stalls for stress free hay and grain. If I want to ride, I call them in, let them head to their stalls, give them a taste of grain -and then pull whoever I am working out, ride them, groom them, and then back to their stall.

I always try to end my time with them on a good note so they continue to look forward to seeing me.
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post #16 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 12:53 PM
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well, that works if you have control of the when and where of feeding.

but another thing is , once you do have the halter on the horse, you can just stand next to him for a bit, real casual, breathing easily, rub or scratch him a bit, kind of get him to forget the tension he might have felt when you put the halter on. then walk off up to the barn or where you are bound.

dont put the halter on quick like, then immediately yank him off to lead up.

however, once you start walking, leading, you DO expect him to lead well, and if he doesn't, well, that's another thing to address; respectful leading.
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post #17 of 28 Old 12-07-2013, 04:19 PM
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I had a horse that was like this. I would go put his halter on and just walk away instead of taking him to be worked. And leave it on him for about 10 minutes then go back to him and take it off. I also just follow them until they stop walking away. But I didn't do this all the time everyday. I just did it once in a while to condition him that being caught isn't bad.

Another thing I do is I give them their treat before working them instead of after. I usually give it when I get his halter on or when he's all tacked up, before I get on. That works really well for me too. Then they don't focus so much on finishing their work.

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post #18 of 28 Old 12-08-2013, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
Now see, I would actually do exactly the opposite:

when the horse walks , I walk behind him.

when he stops, I stop. The idea is that if the horse choses to walk away from you, you stay with him, and you even make him feel a bit uncomfortable for turning his back on you. If he stops , looks back at you, he is about to change his mind from "I am going to show my hind to this person and walk away from them. they aren't something I am interested in" . . . . to . . . ."what's going on back there? it doesn't feel good to walk away from her. I better look back and see what this is all about".

it's when the horse stops and looks back that you reward that correct choice with yourself stopping. you can even turn your body off to the side abit, wait, and if they exhibit pricked ears and some curiousity, you might even try stepping back or off sideways to draw theit attention.

if they walk off, you follow them. If they stand still for a bit, you can try approaching but be ready for them to choose to leave you, again. if they do, you can just walk after them. I will sometimes make a little bit of motion with my hands, off to the side, to see if I can't draw their eye back toward me. if they reallyl blow me off and move away, I might scuffle the ground, or make a bit of a commotion so that they WILL jump out of being startled. heck they turned their back on me, they shouldn't do that. However, I will nave make a commotion when they chooose to leave until they really have made that choice and moved a step or two off. if you do it too soon, the horse thinks you are telling him to leave. what you are telling him is that turning his hind toward you and walking off was the wrong choice and you make that uncomfortable.

but when he stops, and especially when he looks back, you take your "pressure" off of him. he made the right choice. he might even chooose to come and walk up to YOU!
not sure why it worked for me, but it did.

each time she would let me get closer before she walked off.

previously trying to catch her it would be an all out chase, blocking her path and cornering her until she gave up. i think letting her watch me walk closer and stopping when she walked off was showing that i wasn't going to run and chase her anymore.

now i just walk and walk until i get close enough to pet her, then rub her neck for a few minutes and walk off
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post #19 of 28 Old 12-08-2013, 01:58 PM
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it kind of depends on whether the horse is leaving you out of fear or out of disdain and dislike for work. if the horse looks at me while I approach, then as I get closer , it turns and leaves, I may stop. if the horse is a fearful one, sometimes I can induce it to turn and look back again if I DO stop, and even back away a little. certainly, that horse may be really fearful if I make a commotion behind him when he leaves, or even walk after him too quickly.

I don't want to put such a horse into fleeing mode. I want to stay with it and look for ways to elicit its' sense of curiousity.
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post #20 of 28 Old 12-08-2013, 02:05 PM
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Personally, I don't believe in giving a horse treats when they are difficult to catch.

That said, I really don't have any advice for how to remedy your situation. Some very informative suggestions have been given already, though!

The sensitivity of the internet baffles me.
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