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BriocheIsLove 01-08-2013 08:46 PM

Buddy Sour Mare Question
 
I have a 15 year old Arabian mare that is extremely buddy sour when taken out of the herd. I use her for lessons and when she is tied and my riders are grooming and tacking up she is pawing, twisting, neighing, etc. For the most part if I take her up into the barn more she is better, by a little, but even if she cant physically see or get to another horse, she starts to freak.

So my question is: What are some natural techniques I can use to help her be more confident in being in the barn by herself?

Brighteyes 01-08-2013 09:03 PM

One way to do it (there are many) is to have a horse tied right outside the barn. Bring your mare into the barn, pause for just a second, and walk her out. Do this again and again and again. Eventually, your mare will be tired of getting hyped and calming down and than getting hyped again. She'll know she'll see her friend in a short amount of time anyway.

Gradually increase the amount of time she spends inside the barn alone. When you first start, she might not be able to stand there for 30 seconds. Make her stand for 25 and then walk her out to see her friend. Never increase the time to the point she gets worried and then you bring her to see her friend. Bring her back out right before she starts to act out.

This way will take time and effort, but it really increases confidence. :wink:

Freemare 01-08-2013 09:10 PM

I have dealt with this in a lot of horses. The best way to fix it is to make her not want to be with the other horses. Put her to work around the horses. Then walk away and let her stand. The sec you go back to the other horses, or she starts to be silly. Put her back to work. You may have to do this everyday for a month or more for it to sink in. I have used this on lots of horses and I have fixed them with in a few weeks.

SRose 01-11-2013 11:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Freemare (Post 1835459)
I have dealt with this in a lot of horses. The best way to fix it is to make her not want to be with the other horses. Put her to work around the horses. Then walk away and let her stand. The sec you go back to the other horses, or she starts to be silly. Put her back to work. You may have to do this everyday for a month or more for it to sink in. I have used this on lots of horses and I have fixed them with in a few weeks.

Completely agree with this. Make her enjoy being with you and to look for you, not the other horses. If you make the environment around her herd a work environment and the one around you more relaxing, she will begin to see you as her safe zone. Make sure also to encourage her when she is alone with you, petting, kind words and what not. They may not understand the words but they understand the tone. My horse seemed to like when I would sing or hum too, if he became tense on the trail by himself his head would start to lower if I sang a few calming tunes. That may not apply to all horses though, maybe he's just a music lover, haha.

Pegasus1 01-13-2013 05:17 AM

As I said on another thread the horse is not Buddy Sour, it is Buddy Sweet. As I also said on the other thread this may sound trite, but the switch in thinking has helped me deal with issues like this in the past.
The idea from Freemare is a very good one. In effect it is making the area near the buddy less sweet. You also don't want to make it a sour place, just closer to neutral. The trick is to know when to stop making them work hard !

Pegasus1 01-13-2013 05:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SRose (Post 1840309)
My horse seemed to like when I would sing or hum too, if he became tense on the trail by himself his head would start to lower if I sang a few calming tunes. That may not apply to all horses though, maybe he's just a music lover, haha.

My trainer used to hum or whistle when the horse got tense. As James used to say it is almost impossible to hold muscular tension in your body for long when you are whistling. It therefore forces your body to relax, whatever your mind is doing, and this relaxation is transmitted to the horse. I have seen it work with many horses.


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