Rearing on the wall
Not sure if any of you remember but I got a horse for free from the barn I was training at and he is a Thoroghbred/QH. I have been getting him back into riding shape and training him for barrels/games. He is doing amazing but the barn got a new horse (Chester) about a two months ago that I have been absolutly in love with, just from looking at it. Long story short this girl who was leasing a horse ended up having to get a different horse. They offered her the horse I had been training to lease (Barbie) or she could HAVE Chester. Obviously she tried out chester and was very frightened of him and knew that I loved this horse. She asked if I would trade with her, I would take Chester and she could have my horse. So right now I'm trying out this horse Chester.
Here's his story, he went to a trainer for 90 days and did very well, learned barrel and etc. The lady rode him for 2 years straight and then got married and whatever else made her quit riding, now this horse hasn't been handled or ridden for 2-3 years. I have been lunging him, doing ground work, yesterday got a saddle and bridle on him, he does all this perfectly. A lot of respect. His only downfall is the tying.
They have :"the wall of patience" where all their horses tie, all day, if they need and just chill there, this horse is a different story! If you are not standing right next to him, touching him, he paws with all of his might and starts to rear. Yesterday he reared up and had his front end on the inside wall of the pole barn, we had him on a rope we could release if he got into trouble so we obviously released him, Even if we tie him real short the tie is too high and he can still get up. We are not sure what his problem is, if something happened to him on the wall or what but its a little scary that he does this to himself and we are not sure why. The BO called the last owner yesterday to try get more info on him but I'm looking for more ideas on what we can do to get this horse to stand calmly at the wall! please!
Use a 12' or so rope and get him moving his hindquarters laterally. Allow him to move forward a little so he can step his near hind well under his belly. By near, I'm referring to the one nearest you. Hold the lead 3-4' away from the halter. As you stand near his elbow, but out a few feet, it will allow him to arc as you move his hiney. When a hind is well under and crossing, the horse can't brace as he becomes like a table with 3 legs. Practise this until just pointing the whip toward his hip gets him moving. OK. When you tie him, use the same long rope but don't tie, run it around a post or thro tie ring and hand on to the free end. This gives you enough length to stand well away from his side. The moment he looks like he's going to brace, get his butt moving as you had practised. This will likely come as a surprise to him but move him around until you run out of room. A stout post out in the open works best. If you have to let go of the rope if it will prevent a wreck. The moment he stands quietly, even for 5 seconds, release him and go for a walk then return and repeat. If somone can stay on his other side you can get him really moving side to side and back.
I'll have to try this, there are no posts out in the open so the wall is our only option. I have been working on the "moving the hind end" thing since day one, all i have to do is step out and look at it and away his hind end goes. hes good on both sides. The thing you explained about just wrapping the rope around the pole so it can be released, this is what we did yesterday, every time he pawed we would get after him, i'll try this whole moving thing, I just hate to get him into trouble, yesterday was a little frightening!
Does anyone think that just tying him and brushing him and keeping him calm on the wall would be a good thing? He is fine when we do this so I don't know if I should repeatedly be just giving him attention or not, its when you walk away or just step back and look at him that he freaks out, the BO was ready to find a place last night to tie him lower and just leave him there for an hr. I'm going on to the barn right now, hopefully she got some info on his past life.
Since you released him when he climbed the wall, you just taught him to climb the wall.
There are 2 things you can do:
You can leave him tied -- even if he throws a bigger fit (which he will now do), and only release him if he is choking himself to death or is up-side -down. If he fall over or throws himself over, leave him there for a while before you let him up. It should NOT be a pleasant experience for him.
The other thing you can do is put a 'body rope' on him. Tie a soft nylon rope around his girth (you can use a slip knot or tie a non-slip bowline knot), run it between his front legs, through his halter and tie him with it. Most horses only pull back on it once or twice and do not usually throw the big fit they do with a halter. At some point you have to switch to a halter without the body rope. Some horses will pull back again with the halter, but most won't -- especially if you use the body rope for a back-up for a while.
I have used a 'war bridle' type of halter like the 'Be Nice Halter' with success, also. It is very effective because it hurts when a horse pulls back. It uses pain just like an electric fence keeps a horse from walking through it -- it works because they have tried and it hurts. It is effective, but you can have some really violent fights while a horse learns to respect. it.
The main thing is that no matter what you decide to do, make sure the horse is tied high enough. We like 1 to 2 feet above their withers. You can damage a neck very easily if you do not tie one high enough. Never tie a halter puller to a single post that they can go around and never tie to a fence or place that they can set back at and lunge forward getting their front feet through the fence. Never tie a horse to something that can be broken or moved. [I have seen a horse running backward with an entire round pen dragging along in front of him. Not only could he have pulled his neck down or broken it, he could have jumped forward and broken his legs in the panels. ]
The only reason we released him when he was on the wall was because his leg was stuck. It is a big pole barn and the ties are on the "poles" holding the barn up, then there is a wooden wall around the whole inside so that the horses dont kick the steel walls or whatever. When he went up his front was on this wooden wall and his one hoof went down inbetween the two walls. She released him because she thought we were going to have to do something but luckily he jumped up and got it out. If I was the one holding the rope I would have grabed it and just started over, however, he is not yet my horse, he is hers and I guess she can do whatever she wants. Anyways, I will have to try these other techniques, hes definatly tied high enough and the wall is definatly not going to move, he doesn't necessarily pull on the rope he knows he's tied and it really irks him.
You just have to outlast him. If it take all day -- so be it. If it takes 3 days -- so be it. Just put him up at night and tie him back out after he has had feed and water in the morning. They all get over it and will eventually just stand there with their heads down and a hind leg cocked.
I have had them dig big enough holes under trees (tied down from a tree limb with a nylon rope and big swivel snap ) that we had to fill them back up with the tractor and a big loader. They all got over it and became pleasant enough to leave them alone and tie up anywhere.
Just make sure it's a big enough tree!
Does he really have to be tied. Altho I got my puller to quit, I discovered he was much happier with the rope thrown over his back. He had the option to leave so he stayed. Anything could go on around him and he was relaxed. I could walk away and he'd wait until I returned. I've since trained my other two horses that way.
Tied him to the tree, two lunge lines going in differnt directions with me and my bf holding them, they were tight so he could not go around the tree and create a mess. He broke both of them. No luck.
Talked to the BO, told them I'm very frustrated with this horse and that he is not for me if he can't get over this, I need a horse that can relax and go somewhere. They're having a trainer come out that deals with horses with these types of problems or problems that seem like they could be the end of the horse and she said this horse will probably be nothing compared to what they normally deal with. Hopefully she's right, I love this horse but I just don't know how to break this habit.
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