My mare is a Standardbred. Now, I don't know, but I think my old girl has picked up a few bad habits from the race track. Like when I lead her, everytime I stop or pull back on her, she starts turning around in a circle. Or when two people are standing in front of her, she walks right in between them, causing us humans to move out of her way. But the funny thing is she just stops beside us, waiting for us to pet her on either side. I know I'm supposed to show her I'm boss, but it's hard because she's a stubborn old thing. Any suggestions?
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Oops! Ment to post this in horse training forums! Pardon for the mistake!
Lots of groundwork and consistency in correction. Don't correct her one day then ignore it another day. Every day needs to have the same rules. She may have been taught to turn and face her handler when stopping. I recommend getting some Clinton Anderson (or another method if you prefer) and following his techniques. It doesnt matter if she's stubborn - she still needs to be taught that you are in charge.
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I suppose it's the same worldwide in standardbred training stables...saw that a lot while renting a barn in such a place in Italy.
These horses are pretty much manhandled, never taught any normal manners. They don't tug on the leadrope for stopping. They either pull or brace themselves and let the horse run into it. Normal reaction to that is to whirl around.
Going between two people....when they get hitched up the bars of the sulky are very tight, so body contact might resemble that.
I don't think your mare is stubborn. I think she doesn't understand you sometimes.
I know nothing specifically about training of STBs for racing, but what you describe sounds like just normal lack of ground training. Don't blame her for being stubborn, just teach her clearly & consistently what 'manners' you want her to know with you, namely yielding(responding softly with understanding, not bracing or reacting away in fear) to pressure.
They don't get any training, at least not where I was. Foals are not handled, yearlings are being caught by several strong men, put in a stall, get bitted for a couple of days and out they go, long lining, if they don't resist much its the foal cart, one person on it, the other at the head, and again, if there is little resistence off they go into work.
Don't ask what happens if there IS resistance.
There are also good people, usually women, but not very many
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