Stomping foot - Page 2

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Stomping foot

This is a discussion on Stomping foot within the New to Horses forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    11-14-2013, 08:12 AM
Couple of thoughts - first, I have two horses on the property who stomp when they are eating out of sheer excitement. One of them even strikes a pose like a bird dog at the gate when they hear grain being poured in the barn and he is waiting to be let in! The major adaptation we have made is replacing the conventional feed bin in the barn with a full length "kick bin." Several companies make these, so ask at your local store or with your barn builder - the barns here are both Barnmaster so we use them. If you try to feed them with a pan or bucket, you will spend way more time than you want to picking it up, and you won't have a way to track whether supplements or medications in their food are actually being ingested.

Second, recommend giving some thought in general to what part of your care routine occurs while your horses are eating. We all get stuff done while they are chomping away (I, too, use the time to check the condition of each horse as part of the daily routine), but because they are so accommodating, if a task is performed only while they are eating, then a) they never become trained to develop the patience and submission for you to accomplish the task when they are not eating, and b) you may not know how they act without the literal carrot in front of them. A little off topic, and may or may not be applicable, but food for thought if it helps.

Good luck!
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    11-14-2013, 10:46 AM
At feeding time I leave them alone. In the wild, one horse doesn't touch another that's grazing unless it's looking to cause trouble. I respect their space.
    11-14-2013, 10:53 AM
Super Moderator
I agree with saddlebag - a horse should be given its feed and left in peace.
I'm not saying that its OK for a horse to be food aggressive when you feed it or if you want to go near it when its eating but they deserve to be left alone to enjoy their food
Heaven help anyone who messed about with me when I was eating!!!
I think you'll find the foot stamping is just down to excitement and even a form of impatience in a greedy horse because they see that food as the highlight of their day.
Its not something that I would worry about
    11-14-2013, 10:54 AM
I have one that started to paw the air. I immediately removed the pan which sits on the ground. When his hoof was on the ground the pan was returned. It took a few feedings but he got the message. The other one began pawing at the ground. "Maybe if I dig a hole the feed will come faster". This resulted in my turning my back and walking away slowly until he quit. He soon learned how that works but does test me periodically, only to get the same reaction from me.
    11-14-2013, 11:37 AM
Green Broke
I agree to:

1. Let the horse eat its feed pan stuff in peace.
2. Drink water in peace.

Once they kick back and light up a cigarette (they're eating hay:), if I need to hunt for ticks or scrape bot eggs, that's when I do it.

As far as stomping, pawing or throwing feed? No no and no. I expect table manners. It takes a huge amount of patience and PROPER discipline but horses can be corrected from essentially being ten year old children banging their silverware on the table. Some horses get it faster than others.

I've had my Arab 20 years. There was a point in time he decided it was a cool thing to start pawing his floor for his supper.

I quickly broke him of that but, for whatever reason, a few weeks ago he lost his presence of mind and started pawing the floor - lollol

I was preparing everyone's feed pans, that area being directly across from his stall. I turned toward him, raised my voice and said "Streeterrrrrr! You STOP that!". He pulled his head up, ears went forward, the Betty Davis eyes appeared and he looked straight at me as if to say, "I wasn't doing anything but I'll stop anyway". - lol lol

Apologies to those who think it's ok to let a pawing or stomping horse go. I can, however, see a bit of logic in that if the horse is eating outside with other horses and that situation makes it difficult or impossible to correct the pawing.

I don't tolerate bad table manners from children; it's a lot less grief for me to teach a horse to be respectful while he's waiting for his meal

It's very rare that I have to whap somebody's knee cap to get my point across but I have been known to do that, if it's the leg that's being bad.
    11-14-2013, 12:31 PM
Super Moderator
I looked back at the OP's first post just in case I'd got it wrong - but I hadn't. Her horse stomps the ground when its eating its food in the paddock - I can't see that as something you could really do anything about - or worth doing anything about if its not an aggression thing
I don't put it in the same category as a horse that 'demands' its food by scraping at the floor - something that irritates me so much it has to be sorted
    11-14-2013, 07:35 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by jaydee    
I looked back at the OP's first post just in case I'd got it wrong - but I hadn't. Her horse stomps the ground when its eating its food in the paddock - I can't see that as something you could really do anything about - or worth doing anything about if its not an aggression thing
I don't put it in the same category as a horse that 'demands' its food by scraping at the floor - something that irritates me so much it has to be sorted
I agree as long as the OP would be able to quickly recognize if the pawing escalates to something a little more than somebody's nervous knee syndrome

Some years back, I lived in SoCal's Low Desert area with three of my horses. I was single and drove 77 miles one way to Long Beach to work. If I didn't roll out the driveway by 5:15 AM, I stood a good chance off being late for work at 8:00 AM.

Meaning, I did not have time for any antics, including foot stomping that might tip a pan of food, I had no time to get more, so then I had to hope that horse didn't steal somebody else's food.

I spent a few weekends and plenty of evenings teaching the three of them table manners, so I could at least get them off my mind driving down the 90, a/k/a "Highway From H*ll to get to my job.

That's what prompted me to reply like I did but you are correct, if the horse is in the paddock and the stomping doesn't get ear pinning and tail swishing added to it, it's best for an un-experienced person to let it go

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