So, a pony that my mum and I ride regularly at my yard has seriously bad self esteem.
He was injured when he came here about 3 years ago, and he was off for 2 years. Hes now back in work, but terrified of everything. I mean EVERYTHING.
Cup on a fence, dent in the ground, shiny fences, you name it.
Until now, we've been going slowly, letting him sniff and come close to everything.
However, I'm thinking that we should start taking a more 'no nonsense' approach to it, just plowing on past things, ignoring him if he gets scared.
Oh, and eyecandy cos he's cute as a button!
You do not say how long he has been back in work. I find that when the (fox) hunters come back into work they go through a 'silly' fit stage where there are demons everywhere! I always take the no nonsense approach. I make them, very firmly with my legs, go up to whatever and touch or stand by it. I do not get angry or even cross, just very determined. They soon get fed up with being made to go to whatever and stand. I never make a great fuss of praising them when they do, I just stop nagging them.
He's been back in work for a little over a year now, which is why its weird that he's still so scared of the same things...
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Yeah I would just continue on. I find with Harry if you stop and let him see things then he thinks you don't think it is safe and gets more worried. If you just continue on past then he goes, ok it must be nothing then, it may take him a few times past a big object to return to normal but as long as I don't react to the object he trusts my judgement and continues on.
Hes a gorgeous little pony! Connies are the best hey?
To me all these things that you say are scary to your horse, sounds like you may be anticipating that he is going to spook at everything maybe? When my horses spook at (for example, a wheelie bin) And you can feel them tense up as they near it, I would ignore the bin and just walk on past it. If the horse spooks at it, just turn it around an keep walking past it to get it used to it. I aslo agree with what Foxhunter said. Whatever method you prefer. :)
Good luck and lovely pony!
I have heard the same thing, instead of showing the horse thing, move on by and don't recognize it. The horse will not think it is a threat if you don't ack owlege it being there. I did the same thing when I started riding again, stopping to show him it wasn't a threat. My trainer explained if I stopped and acknowledged it my horse would spook even more. So when he spooks now I ride on past, and give him a reassuring pat
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