My Biting Lesson Horse...
I've been riding since September. Usually, I ride a white gelding named Blue. He bites when I groom him, when I do up his girth, refuses to pick up his feet, and outright distrespects me. At first, he never did this. Now he does it everytime I come near him. I'm nervous to go anywhere near his head, even cross-tieing. Now, I would ask to ride another horse, but Blue is the only lesson horse that can jump, and that's what I'm training to do. However, he's an absolute angel in the saddle. How do I show him that I'm the leader?
(PS. My instructor and the owner of the stable both know how much of a pain Blue is. They trust that I can handle him- which I can, normally, when he isn't biting.)
You say they know "what a pain" he is - but are they aware that he is biting? I'd be hard pressed to view a facility and trainer/instructor as the quality I want to pay for if they knowingly have a biting horse in their "string" that they have not personally seen to re-training out of that sort of unacceptable behavior.
I'm not sure how many times per week you ride, or if you've handled horses prior to September.. but I couldn't see myself comfortable enough to handle a biting, bad behaving horse if I only had a few months of experience. Even after eight years, I was nervous about handling my 'new' lesson horse since he tests new riders and is known to be a tremendous grouch about grooming and even riding sometimes.. although he now respects me after I've put him into his place.
If you're sure that you're comfortable with it, if he even shows any signs of turning around to nip or has his ears pinned.. make him move. Use as much force as you need to, because it's not likely to hurt him, and if he's like Roger, it doesn't take much to get him to move anyways.
Also, since you're only in training for jumping and not jumping yet, perhaps you could ask to go back to 'simpler' lesson horses to get your confidence back up?
well it's definetly a disrespect problem with Blue! Can you do some ground work with him to get him respecting/listening to you......my gelding would be a brat when picking his hooves, so I had a riding crop in my hand and when he did that he got a sharp smack on his butt and told no! He stopped after that........he would bite when he was younger though, he's out grown that now. I have a soon to be 4yr. old who was born here, he would try and suckle me right from the day he was born, I didn't want to slap him so what I did is squeal at him like another horse or his Mom would do.....only had to do it 3 times and he's never put his lips on me since trying to suckle or bit! Maybe try squealing at Blue as soon as you see he's turning to bit at you, do it loud! People might think you are crazy but it won't hurt to try LOL
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