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LovesMyDunnBoy 03-13-2012 12:55 AM

Training a coming three year old mare, help?
Alrighty guys! I need so opinions on this situation.

My boyfriend has a coming three year old paint mare who hasn't had much of anything done with her. They got her as a five month old, and she was very underweight and neglected.

They put weight on her, and got her in good condition and since then she had mainly been a pet. She is a real sweetheart most of the time, and loves attention.

One of his friends worked with her, and I have seen him work with horses and he is usually good with them from what I can tell. He worked with her twice before me and had her halter broke and taking a saddle.

Now I went out there yesterday and worked with her some because I feel she needs more groundwork. So I led her around, got her to back up and yield her hindquarters. Then I turned her loose and worked her in the pen a little to get some respect. Not too much of course because she's young. And she would buck at me and I just kept on. Then she started charging at me, which I stood my ground and swung the rope so that is she got too close it would smack her face. She eventually stopped, and I let her be done for the day becaaause she was listening well.

Today, I came over and his friend had been working her...for about five hours. I was furious! She had been ran WAY too much, and her knee was actually swollen because she had been running the same way because she wouldn't go the other way. I was very angry, but she isn't my horse so I can't say anything. He worked her that much because he was getting two goats in return for hours.

I told them to cold hose it, and give her a few days. Is this right?

But yeah, my question was also what should I do about her charging me like that? I'm not going anywhere near a saddle until she has prefect ground manners and respect.

Thanks for listening to my question/rant.
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sporthorsegirl 03-13-2012 01:06 AM

Are you and the friend both working with the filly? Does your boyfriend who owns the filly know this? If not, he might not realize how much she is getting worked. I do very much agree that she should not be over worked because of her young age, five hours is way too much for almost any horse . Your boyfriend should realize that and fire his friend. I find it odd that he was working for goats and the more she was worked the more goats he gets? Obviously he was going to take advantage of that situation and overwork her.

If possible, use an ice boot on the knee if it is really swollen. If its not too bad, you can cold hose it like you suggested. Just hand walk her about 10-15 minutes every day (no turn out) until the swelling goes down, probably two or three days as long as she didn't pull anything.

As for the groundwork you did with her: It sounds like you did well. When she charges/comes at you in the round pen, charge right back at her. Smack her really hard on the neck (if you continue to have the lead rope hit her head she will probably become head shy). After she is listening to you and no longer charging at you, relax your aggressive stance and wait for her to come to you. Then desensitize her with the lead rope. You are on the right track, but if possible definitely try to get rid of your BF's "friend".

LovesMyDunnBoy 03-13-2012 01:19 AM

It was only for those two goats, so hopefully he won't do it again. I'm going to try to be the only one who works her from now on. And I try to charge back as you said, but she will charge then swing her butt around and kick. I try to avoid getting kicked ha. But I'm glad to hear I'm on the right track so far :)

Thank you for your input!
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LovesMyDunnBoy 03-13-2012 12:40 PM

Bump... Anyone else?
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Wallee 03-13-2012 01:50 PM

When she charges you hold your ground and get her to move out. Right after a charge like that you need to put the pressure on fast and then take it away. If you feel she is going to charge again apply pressure again. Give and release. Let her realize she will be made to work everytime she thinks she can charge.

LovesMyDunnBoy 03-13-2012 01:52 PM

Ok, the only thing I was worried about was moving when she kicked out because it was muddy and I almost fell trying to get out of, the way,
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mls 03-13-2012 02:02 PM

She is seeing you as a herdmate instead of a human. Everyone - boyfriend included - needs to stop the cooing and cuddling and treat her as a horse until she understands where her place is.

When she charges - stand your ground - with whip in hand. She turns to kick - aim for her hock and smack her. If you move, she got what she wanted.

If the footing is less than ideal for you, it will be to work her too.

HanginH 03-13-2012 02:06 PM

When you push her back out to the wall do you put a bit of extra pressure on her?
If it was my horse and they charged at me I would probably push them off to the fence and put a good amount of pressure on them for a a couple laps then release it off. I would make sure that I got her out on the edge and she had to do a bit of work for being that disrespectful personally. I am not saying that you need to run her for 5 hours like your stating the friend had but she needs to know that there are consequences for such actions. Lots of times I think people just push them away back to wall and then release the pressure to early so the horse hasn't learned very effectively that they are the lower horse on the pecking order. Just my opinion though.

Good Luck.

Wallee 03-13-2012 02:18 PM

You will have to learn when and how to apply the pressure. Constantly keeping pressure on for a hour... is not going to help. Pressure is givin to get the feet moving and keep them moving. If you are wanting her to be in a certain speed then you apply pressure to get them to that speed and on and off to keep them at that. When charging you and you hold your ground and you run her back off, it wouldnt hurt to give her a smack on the rear to let her know she was in the wrong.

LovesMyDunnBoy 03-13-2012 02:56 PM

Thanks for everyone's input! I have explained that she should treat you with respect and if she doesn't make her. So hopefully they listen to me. And right now I don't have a whip, only her lead rope. I'm teaching her voice commands, a kiss for go and upward transitions, "easy" for downward transitions and "woah" for a complete stop. She learns pretty fast, and she only charges me and challenges me for the first probably five laps. But I will be doing those things and hopefully she'll learn quick that she isn't the boss.

She has done desensitizing to be done too, if I wave my hand or anything she spooks a little. I usually just keep doing it until she stops and don't really pay attention to her for spooking. I just go on with what I was doing lol. She usually relaxes in a few seconds.

But I'm going to try to keep the friend from working with her because two different people with different methods is bound to confuse the poor girl lol.
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