Trouble with new horse

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Trouble with new horse

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        05-23-2014, 06:40 PM
    Trouble with new horse

    Hi all,

    I just joined and am looking for some advice. I hope this is not too long but here is some history to set the stage:

    I am a novice adult rider and bought my first horse 6 weeks ago, an 8 yo Clyde TB mare. I tried her 3 times before I bought her and she was great - not spooky, calm and a bit on the pokey side - great!

    The day we went to pick her up we loaded her in the trailer and something snapped in her and she lost it. She actually pushed herself through the man door and cut her front legs as well as skinned her back. She basically destroyed the inside of the trailer so we treated her and the barn I bought her from brought her over 2 days later. She loaded fine.

    It took a month for her back to heal to the point I could put a saddle on her. During the month I did a lot of in hand stuff and then started to lunge her. She was difficult in the cross ties and started to become herd bound, calling constantly to her girls. She has become much calmer in the 6 wks and calls much less, and I have started riding her. It's been about 3 wks since I started riding her.

    5 days ago during turn out she ran at the gate, bent it and then tried to jump it, but landed on it and crumpled it. No injuries but now she is difficult to get out of the paddock as she is scared of the gate.

    I rode her that day and she was ok, a little strong but manageable. I went to ride her 2 days later and she was very spooky - she was jumping at everything and very difficult to handle. Today the same.

    She is in at night but is out all day w the same group of mares she has always been with. She eats her hay and at night gets roughage cubes w a high fat and fibre, as she was underweight when I bought her.

    My coach will not get on her bc she is nervous she will get hurt. My dilemma is that she is turning out to be a totally different horse than I thought. She was totally calm and quiet but is now becoming pushy and panicky.

    This is my first horse so I'm in a hard spot - I don't want to get hurt but I don't want to give up on her....
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        05-23-2014, 06:50 PM
    Welcome to the forum!

    Sorry you are in this situation. It is likely that this horse was drugged while you were trying her out. She sounds like she has a lot of behavioral problems, and not much training. I'm sure she is a very big horse due to her breeding, and has quite a high chance of hurting you if things continue as they are.

    So the short of it is, if you want to stick with this horse, get a horse trainer ASAP. Someone that will work with the horse individually, and then you and the horse together. There is a reason for all of her behavior, and it is hard to determine just reading your account of it. A trainer will be able to understand your horse and know how to solve them problems (if they are any good).

    God Bless, and be safe!
        05-23-2014, 07:01 PM
    Every horse is different, so the problem could be anything.

    I bought a horse just over a year ago, and I feel your pain. For the first month, he was a gem and then went totally downhill. He shied at everything, was pigrooting, half rearing, spinning in circles, you name it. We had no connection and I was losing patience quickly. I got to the stage where I even offered him to my friend, before I turned around and said, no I'll stick with it. Today, I ride him down main roads and he doesn't bat an eyelid. I took him out without his mate not long ago, and he was a gem (quite surprisingly!)
    I honestly believe he was just testing to see what he could and couldn't get away with with a new handler. He learnt soon enough when I persisted that he wasn't going to get his way and now he's an angel (most days haha)

    However, it sounds like your mare has already had a few traumatic experiences, and this is bound to have been imprinted in her mind now. Unfortunately, situations like this often mean you have to go all the way back to basics (this is actually what I ended up doing with my boy) and start from the ground up.
    I found groundwork amazing and far more valuable than me jumping on him nervous and not trusting him. The groundwork spent taught him who was in charge.

    If you're not feeding her high sugar and energy feeds, then that shouldn't be a factor. Often behavioral issues can be caused due to pain, so it might be worth getting someone out to have a look? Is there someone other than your coach that would be willing to ride her? However, if the issue is that she is just testing her boundaries, my opinion is that you will need to be the one to push her through this.

    Unfortunately, the worst case scenario is that she had been drugged when you tried her. Sadly, as disgusting as it is, some sellers are still commonly doing this. If this is the case, she probably isn't as well trained as you might have been made to believe, and I would suggest sending her to be re educated.

    Hopefully you sort it out soon, best of luck!
    Palomine, KigerQueen and CNSquared like this.
        05-23-2014, 07:03 PM
    Green Broke
    IMO, try one of two things. Try getting your money back for her. This is not what you thought you bought. Then again, if the people you bought her from were slimy enough to drug her they probably won't take her back and refund you... But it's worth a shot!

    If that fails look for a trainer that will work with her! Even if they don't mesh with your discipline/style just get the job done and worry about training her your way later. Her habits sound pretty dangerous/unpredictable.

    Lastly, be safe! If she tries anything stupid don't be a hero. She sounds like the kind of horse who really doesn't care if your in the way.
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    Palomine, KigerQueen and CNSquared like this.
        05-23-2014, 07:04 PM
    Green Broke
    Agree with getting a trainer out. That's the easiest, safest way. You can have someone diagnose what's going on in person.

    she obviously doesn't feel safe or trust you as her handler. Did she have the same previous home for a long time? Was she ridden by novice riders before you?

    I recently had an issue with a gelding that I had ridden and found lovely and very willing under saddle. Never even offered to misbehave. A rider with a good seat but a few confidence issues got on him one day, and in the course of 60 seconds he turned into a bucking, high strung monster that was an absolute basket case. She was bucked off and an experienced rider got on and he was back to his old self, trotting nicely around.
    Palomine and CNSquared like this.
        05-23-2014, 07:12 PM
    I would not assume that she was drugged. Horses can have a very calm demeanor in the place they are happiest, and change when removed. Also, maybe the food is too rich, making her hot.

    I would suggest that you look temporaril for another trainer who has more experience and willingness to deal with a troubled horse, not just teach you how to ride.
        05-23-2014, 07:15 PM
    Green Broke
    The day we went to pick her up we loaded her in the trailer and something snapped in her and she lost it
    if she was drugged for the first three rides and the sellers knew she was dangerous, wouldn't they drug her for the trailer ride?

    -It took a month for her back to heal to the point I could put a saddle on her.
    -It's been about 3 wks since I started riding her.
    -5 days ago during turn out she ran at the gate, bent it and then tried to jump it, but landed on it and crumpled it. No injuries but now she is difficult to get out of the paddock as she is scared of the gate.
    -I rode her that day and she was ok, a little strong but manageable. I went to ride her 2 days later and she was very spooky - she was jumping at everything and very difficult to handle. Today the same.
    this doesn't say drugged to me. It has been deteriorating over 6+ weeks, and I don't know any sedative that lasts that long. This screams insecure horse with trust issues.

    I unfortunately know a few people that bought drugged horses, and none resembled this case.
    smrobs, Palomine and CNSquared like this.
        05-23-2014, 07:51 PM
    Green Broke
    Good possibility the horse is spoiled too, as in never had to do anything she didn't want to, and may not have actually been ridden that much either.

    And sadly, if a new owner doesn't know much about horses to begin with, a horse figures that out quickly and it goes downhill.

    As for feed? I've seen oats make one a village idiot candidate too, or one flake of peanut hay, or pelleted feeds, so anything could be making this worse that she is eating.

    But I am going to go with horse was drugged when you tried her. And may have been in first trailer loading fiasco, but not heavily enough and too, if horse gets very upset, those drugs cease working quickly.

    Only other possibility is this horse has been on Regumate to keep her more civil, and now isn't getting that?

    To me, this is not a horse worth getting hurt over. And she is going to hurt you.

    Your handling could also be causing some of much of this, but bottom line is this horse is too much for you to handle.

    How did you find out about this horse? An ad somewhere? If it was and the ad says calm/gentle/beginner's horse, you might have better luck taking her back.

    There are way too many horses out there that are safe, and enjoyable. This one isn't.
    horseluvr2524 and CNSquared like this.
        05-23-2014, 09:08 PM
    I understand what you're going through I have a 17hh Selle Francias that was abused. He is scared of whips, lead ropes above his head, hands above his head, and his ears being touched at times. He was a runaway horse when I rode him in big arenas. On trail he had to be the leader horse or he'd buck you off. I've owned this horse for three years now and got 2nd place at a rated show last year. Don't give up on her. Rihley was the 2nd horse I owned and I love him. Just spend time teaching her that you are there to protect her not hurt her. Building your trust with her is the most important thing. Horses are herd animals so it might take a while for her to get use to being alone. Don't be scared of her and act like a leader to her that's what she is looking for. Don't give up and I hope it gets better soon because you know she is trained and can be a wonderful horse.
    CNSquared likes this.
        05-23-2014, 09:25 PM
    Is there any possibility that she was not drugged, but was so traumatized by leaving her last barn that she's become a behavior problem? She does not sound like she trusts you. This is what you have to beat first and you need to do it with a trainer. I'm so sorry this happened to you! Stay safe and wear all of your safety gear every time you are near her!!!
    CNSquared likes this.

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