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-   -   How to get a horse to trust you. (http://www.horseforum.com/horse-training/how-get-horse-trust-you-118735/)

kriston0981 04-04-2012 01:29 PM

How to get a horse to trust you.
 
I am training a horse for a friend for recreation. This horse does not know anything she won't even let me catch her to put a halter on. I have gotten her in to a small pen and tried to get her to warm up to me that way. But she wouldn't give me the time of day. She just paced the pen and got anxious when she couldn't get to her other companions. I mentioned to the owner to let me seperate her from the herd to get her used to being alone. They could not meet that request. This horse seems to be sweet natured, and I know that once I get the halter on her I will be able to catch her and to show her I will not hurt her.

But I can't get close enough to her to put one on. She will get close enough to take a treat from my hand and I can pet her forehead. If I try to get any closer than that she runs off. How can I get this horse to let me get close to her without scaring her?

csimkunas6 04-04-2012 01:34 PM

If this horse hasnt been handled much, or at all, only one thing is going to help you and that is time.

I got my horse when he was 10months old, when I went to look at him he was great, haltered, trailed, respected your space, stood still for grooming, picked up feet, ect......well when I got him home it was like a switch went off. I couldnt get him to do a thing, nothing!!

I started going out to the barn everyday and literally just sat next to him and talked to him for a few weeks. After I gained his trust, and eventually respect, our possibilities are endless and Im able to do just about anything and everything with him now. Now a year+ later, I was able to get on him without any issues....good luck!

kriston0981 04-04-2012 01:41 PM

This horse is 6 years old and has had no training. It's tough to get close to her when the fields are so big. I tried getting her back in the pen I used the previous day and she wouldn't go in. I tried using another horse to get her in by tying the other horse in the pen I hoped she would follow like she did the previous day. But she was too smart for that.

Would it help if I had her in the feild alone?

TrailxxRider 04-04-2012 01:42 PM

Lot and lots and lots of time. I worked at a horse rescue for a long time until I became too busy with work and my own horses to keep going. If all she is comfortable with is a pat on the head, thats ok for now. Spend lots of time out in the pasture. Pet the other horses, maybe bring out grooming supplies so your being productive as well. Get her used to you being around, and interacting with the other horses will show her that there's nothing to be afraid of. Dont focus on her or you'll seem more like a predator, act kind of indifferent. Don't rush things, it will only scare her more. Never corner her and make her feel trapped. Grab handfuls of long grass, and hold it tight in your hand. As she's eating slowly start petting her head. Work on this only for a few minutes at first. In a few days see if you can pet down her neck. Avoid crowding her space. Once you can do that I can tell you what to do next :)

kriston0981 04-04-2012 01:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TrailxxRider (Post 1438420)
Lot and lots and lots of time. I worked at a horse rescue for a long time until I became too busy with work and my own horses to keep going. If all she is comfortable with is a pat on the head, thats ok for now. Spend lots of time out in the pasture. Pet the other horses, maybe bring out grooming supplies so your being productive as well. Get her used to you being around, and interacting with the other horses will show her that there's nothing to be afraid of. Dont focus on her or you'll seem more like a predator, act kind of indifferent. Don't rush things, it will only scare her more. Never corner her and make her feel trapped. Grab handfuls of long grass, and hold it tight in your hand. As she's eating slowly start petting her head. Work on this only for a few minutes at first. In a few days see if you can pet down her neck. Avoid crowding her space. Once you can do that I can tell you what to do next :)

Thanks for the advice. I asked my mother for some advice and she said the same thing. It's going to take time and trust on her part. She suggested I sit in the pasture with a bucket of treats and wait for her to come up to me. Eventually she will warm up and get curious.

On another note, horse body language. When I was out there with her yesterday when she let me pet her and then she walked off. When I was standing about 20 feet from her and put my hand out to her. She looked at me and put her head down and then back up. What does this mean if anything at all.

TrailxxRider 04-04-2012 02:08 PM

I can't say for sure, since I wasn't there, but I would say that she doesn't understand your body language, and she stepped back because she was nervous. Either that or she knew exactly what it meant, and was telling you that she wasn't interested.

kriston0981 04-04-2012 02:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TrailxxRider (Post 1438449)
I can't say for sure, since I wasn't there, but I would say that she doesn't understand your body language, and she stepped back because she was nervous. Either that or she knew exactly what it meant, and was telling you that she wasn't interested.

Thanks for the reply, I will let you know in a few days how things go with her.

themacpack 04-04-2012 02:25 PM

You mention that you are training this horse - however it does not seem, from your post, that you have much - if any- training experience, is that true?

kriston0981 04-04-2012 03:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by themacpack (Post 1438470)
You mention that you are training this horse - however it does not seem, from your post, that you have much - if any- training experience, is that true?

I have experience with horses and know a lot about training in the saddle. When I was younger and learning how a horse works my mother did all the ground breaking and let me do the saddle breaking.

The woman I train for knows I am an amatuer trainer and an experienced rider. I've been riding horses for over 11 years and know a lot about riding. Not so much about ground breaking, which is why I'm training. I am trying to better my skills with horses. I am in the military and move around every few years so I do not have time to own my own horse. I train for recreation and I train for free. The owner is fully aware of what I know and what I don't know.

I am a learn as you go kind of person. My mom and I were a team, she ground trained and I saddle trained. I was too little to ground train at the time and she was to fragile to get thrown by a horse so we worked together with the horses. Now that I'm an adult and in the military she isn't here to help me.

TrailxxRider 04-19-2012 03:44 AM

Have you made any progress with your training?


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