Problem with a Senior Horse and a Yearling... - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 09:34 AM Thread Starter
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Problem with a Senior Horse and a Yearling...

Hi all! I am new here, but I have a question that maybe someone can help me with, but before I ask, please please don't chastise me or flame me or be rude to me about this, but it's honestly a situation I do not know how to deal with and I need help... I've been boarding my Arabian horse, Lightning, at this wonderful barn for over a year now. He's happy there, and he loves it there. I love it there as well, until a new boarder arrived about 4-5 months ago with two Standardbreds. A mother and her yearling. Now, at this barn, they keep the mares and the geldings/studs separated, which is perfectly understandable.

This yearling is STILL a stud and has not been gelded yet, and I have no clue if they plan to geld him or not. The problem is, is that my Arabian is up there in age (he's 28), but he can still hold with the best of them! He doesn't act his age at all. However, this boarder has done NOTHING with his yearling! This horse has absolutely no manners whatsoever. He has no understanding of personal space or respect. He crowds you, he chases you, bites you, he thinks he has to practically clobber you but on top of that, he does that to my horse!

Every time I go out to retrieve Lightning from the pasture, I halter him with his lead to take him into his stall, Kid (the yearling) chases us down and tries to jump on top of Lightning! Lightning pins his ears, kicks at him, usually ends up taking off and ripping the lead rope out of my hands in the process, and sometimes Kid will follow him right into his stall and crowds him, making it difficult for me to get into Lightning's stall to retrieve him because of how pushy and nippy Kid is. I wouldn't put it past him to try and rear up in the stall at me or something. I have tried everything I know how, but I've never dealt with a yearling before! The youngest horse I have ever had was a 6 year old.

Does anybody know of anything I can do so me and my horse will both stop being put into an unsafe situation every time I go to retrieve him? I mean lord only knows what goes on in the pasture! I have expressed my concern to the people who own the barn, and they have apologized profusely, but really there's nowhere else Kid can go, and he and Lightning share a pasture they have separated off as Lightning is an older boy, and we need to keep him closer to the barn, as well as the yearling, which I understand, but I'm tired of nearly being trampled and watching my horse get glomped by this yearling every single time I go to get him! Does anybody have any suggestions on what I can do so I don't get hurt when I go out there? This horse does not listen whatsoever, and I'm at my wits end. I'd rather not almost get killed every single time I go out there... Thanks for the advice/suggestions in advance! It's much appreciated!
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post #2 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 09:41 AM
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Speak to the barn owner about safety.
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post #3 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 09:48 AM Thread Starter
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I have spoken to the barn owner about safety, but as I explained in my post, both horses need to be kept as close to the barn as possible because of how old my Arab is and how young and rambunctious this yearling is... So, that's why I'm asking for help because I don't know what else to do, and I have nowhere else I can board Lightning unless I wanted to drive over an hour away to go see him as often as possible. I can't really afford to do that or afford the boarding costs those others want for what I pay now... Not only that, but I've been there longer and I love it there. So does he, and I don't want to be chased off by some owner who neglects his horse's training.
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post #4 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 09:58 AM
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Carry a whip with you and chase him away.

And speak to the owner of the horse.
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post #5 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 10:00 AM
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Speak to the owner. Speak to the barn owner again and start carrying a whip. Put it in writing and keep copies. Document everything. Have a friend take pictures of the yearling on the attack.

I really can't place blame on the baby horse but you have to stay safe. Be proactive.
Document it. Carry a notebook, date time brief synopsis.
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post #6 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SueNH View Post
Speak to the owner. Speak to the barn owner again and start carrying a whip. Put it in writing and keep copies. Document everything. Have a friend take pictures of the yearling on the attack.

I really can't place blame on the baby horse but you have to stay safe. Be proactive.
Document it. Carry a notebook, date time brief synopsis.
Ditto all of that. Buy a buggy whip as they are just long enough and light enough for you to control with one hand, while holding your own horse with the other.

I am sorry but if the yearling were to come at me or my horse I would lace it a good one --- just make sure you don't hit him in the head.

I'll be money there's a mare in the pasture bred back to that yearling. Anyone who thinks colts that age can't breed is sorely mistaken.

If the testicles are down, it can put a baby on the ground; even if "it" is only nine months old itself.

A very good forum friend of mine bought a mare in April that the Sellers were adamant was not bred. Welllll guess what, the year old colt that was in the pasture with her managed to get her in foal and, as of early this month, the lady has a filly she did not want

The barn owner needs a talking to and short of shaking the teeth out of the colt's owner, be thankful you have a gelding and keep that buggy whip with you at all times.

Unhandled stallions are a danger to themselves and everyone/thing around them
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post #7 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 10:39 AM
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Carry a whip. Talk to the owner as well as the BO and document the way the yearling behaves. You may only have to give one swift well placed and timed reprimand and that will be the end of it. I'd make it a buggy whip with a long stiff hand and short whip end. That will give you enough length to keep him off of your guy and correct without disturbing your guy. I'd carry it around when working Lightning and move it around behind him and along his sides so he is used to you using it and not being after him. This is what I carry for feeding time. We have 9 in our pasture and I use it as a pointer and reenforcer. It keeps everyone off me and the feed and pointing in the direction they need to go sends them to their own feed pots. If the two yearlings or the drafts decide they need to try to steal then a quick tap on the rump reminds them to go back to their own and the pot owner they are attempting to steal from or push off the pot never flinches as they know their place and know I am not after them. GL
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post #8 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 10:46 AM
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I'd be ticked. You need to talk to the colt's owner and the BO because this is a serious safety issue. Regardless of whether or not the colt needs to be near the barn, his behavior is completely unacceptable. It's putting you and everyone else at risk of serious injury.

I'd start carrying a whip with me and throttling that little butt every time he came anywhere near me. If that doesn't help and if the owner/BO can't come to some sort of agreement on what to do with the colt to resolve the problem, then I'd start looking for somewhere else to take my horse.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #9 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 12:45 PM
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You know, I just have no patience or tolerance for horse owners who can't take the time and/or resources needed to teach their horse safe and proper ground manners. I know folks have already said this, but I would speak with the barn owner and the horse owner, ideally together. I would definitely explain to them the major safety and liability hazard they have on their hands with the yearling. I hate people who are "lawsuit-happy" but honestly, if they want to have such brazen disregard for both people and other horse's safety by allowing this behavior to continue without taking steps towards rectifying the situation, then they themselves could most likely be held liable if someone or a horse were injured.

I would tell them, you know, I understand that we can't neccesarily move our horses apart but these issues can be fixed if the horse owner worked with this horse on the ground on a regular basis or perhaps even suggest that a professional work with the horse or send the colt away for training if the owner isn't capable of working with the horse. I would tell them, I am going to start documenting every "encounter" I have with this horse and if my horse or myself are injured by this animal, I will be holding them accountable and I would show them that I was documenting by e-mailing them each time something happens, etc. You might also remind the farm owner (away from the horse owner) that they do have the right to ask that horse to leave the farm and honestly, it might be the best course of action if the owner doesn't make an effort to correct the colt's behavior. You should not have to leave the farm, the colt should if it really came to that---I mean, no farm owner would want to loose a perfectly good boarder in order to keep around what is essentially a major liability. To me, it's all about how the horse and farm owner handle this. It's one thing if they are really making an effort to work with this colt and do what they can to keep horses and people safe, but if they are just brushing it off and saying there's nothing they can do about it, that's plain negligence.
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post #10 of 14 Old 08-29-2013, 05:24 PM
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You do really have to talk to the barn owner about how this boarding situation is unsafe for you and your horse. In this situation I'd probably try not to threaten to sue but try and play it a bit dumd rather than aggressive. Something like, "well I guess your liability insurance would cover any injuries I might get from being forced to deal with such an aggressive horse, although will yearlings owner cover vet costs to Lightning? They're the ones responsible for that right?" Or something to that effect. Why does lightening have to be kept close? I'd imagine that dealing with this horse would be detrimental to him, and even if a paddock is further away, you may be better off keeping him there.

When you go talk to your barn owner again have some solutions. What is your ideal scenario? Is there a different paddock that you could keep him in? Could you share the paddock, turning one horse out in the day and another at night? Are other people threatened by him, and will they talk to the owner too? If you want a solution chances are you're going to have to be a bit flexible too.
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