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RhondaLynn 01-14-2013 02:29 PM

Teaching mare to move to me when mounting from "cheating log"
I saw on line and read that to teach a horse to move TOWARD you when you climb up on a cheating rock or log (or anything).

You need to have a lunge whip and tap the oposite hip. when they make even a slight move toward you away from the tapping to rub and praise.

Sounds good.. so I tried.... what a complete failure I felt like!!!
when I climbed up on a chair at the barn, Maci (my mare) looked at me like I was crazy. She stepped up close to me in her shoulder only her rear was swung around away from me. I got the whip and tapped, tapped and tapped some more on her butt,flank. She would turn her neck around and look at her hip and the tapping whip like.. "what in the world" and she would NEVER even make the slightest move away from the tapping. I kept this up for quite a while.. I enlisted hubby's help and he tried to push her toward me.. I thought well I will praise her then.. but she just pushed against him away from me.
HELP.. where did I go wrong???


Golden Horse 01-14-2013 02:54 PM

2 steps back Rhonda.

Start on the ground and standing on her RIGHT side, reach back and tap her hip until she moves over away from you, lots of praise.

Rinse and repeat several times until she moves over as soon as you tap her hip.

Now move a little until you are stood in front of her, repeat the exercise making sure that you are still tapping the same place.

The first exercise is easy for her, you are asking her to move away, the second is a little more difficult.

Then you need to move onto the difficult stuff getting her to move toward you. For this a spotter on the ground is handy now depending on her height and yours reach over and tap on the hip and get her to step towards you. You need you spotter to make sure that you are tapping in the same place again. This is bigger mental challenge for her, so plenty of praise for making an effort.

Once she can do all of that, then you can get on your block and work on it from there.

Painted Horse 01-14-2013 03:14 PM

I'm 6'2" so I don't need a block to reach over the horse.

I just started with a carrot stick and standing on the ground, but your Lunge whip should work as well.

Maybe to start, You will want to position your horse so they can't move away from you. Use a wall or fence on the off side. Reach over and tap on the opposite side. At the smallest give in your direction. Stop tapping and praise.

Continue this like any other training, Maybe next time tapping until you get a bigger move than the previous time. Once the horse learns they need to move toward, you can work on getting lighter and lighter in your request. Until you only need to raise your arm, (Like you are reaching the lunge whip over her) and kiss or cluck.

Use the same vocal sounds you use to tell your horse to move. whether it be a kiss or cluck or swear word. The horse knows that command means move, and now it just needs to learn what direction to move. And your tapping will help it figure that out.

Don't worry about mounting until your horse masters the move over command. Once the horse understand the raised arm and kiss means to move over, Then you can find a block, fence, log, ladder, to stand on and ask the horse to move closer and then practice mounting.

I always train on both sides. So practice for 5 minutes on the left side, the do the same on the right. The 1st day be happy with your horses just moving away from the tapping or pressure. The next day continue working on moving over sooner with less tapping. The horse should learn to step over with 1-3 taps instead of 30 taps. And as you continue to practice, Your horse will learn to step over with just the raising the arm and voice queue to move. You could teach your horse to move right on a kiss and left on cluck, Just be consistent.

Once comfortable with your control of moving the horse, Then attempt to mount.

Horses pick this up pretty quick, If you are consistent in your request and catch that smallest try when you first start. And that first try may be nothing more than just leaning away from the tapping.

Corporal 01-14-2013 03:17 PM

Ditto. PLEASE understand that when we train our horses they don't understand what we want until we repeat, give the release and then praise them. Until it is repeated often and using short sessions that end positively, your horse won't trust you with a new enterprise. After he begins to understand what you want, he will want to try to do please you. Until THEN, he will be nervous, flighty and act frightened, and this is perfectly normal, whether you are teaching manners while being mounted, or training to be calm with gunfire or helicopters...stuff like's all the same to the horse.
Like NIKE...JUST DO IT!! Just keep trying. That's why most of us here encourage you to not give up. We have ALL experienced our horses acting a little crazy. It's especially hard when your first horse was well broken in to everything, and you are now working with a green one. They seem to be afraid of practically everything.
ONE more thing. Make sure that you horse is not frightened of the whip. You may have to go back to lunging, or moving the haunches and moving the forehand, and just getting him to the point where he is obedient to the whip but really understands that you don't mean to beat him with it.

thenrie 01-16-2013 07:27 PM

There is one other thing I noted in your method. I suspect Painted Horse's horses are already very obedient and willing to learn any command or cue, as evidenced by the fact that his cue for this move becomes simply a raise of his right hand, rather than a tap on the rear. Your horse, from your description of him pushing against your husband, is not. I also suspect that if PH's horse were to be so disrespectful, his "tapping" would be significantly harder than yours. His horses understand and respect that fact.

When teaching a horse any cue, giving the same tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap...etc. ad nauseum just irritates the horse and makes them ignore cues, rather than learn them. Give him the cue - say three or four quick taps. If no response, then give it again, this time a little stronger. Keep increasing the pressure (strength of the taps) with each series, until it becomes uncomfortable enough for the horse that he makes an effort to figure out what you want, so as to stop the discomfort.

The progression in the strength of the cues should be fairly steep, so the horse learns that moving the first time is significantly better than waiting for the next series. Then the praising comes in. It must be immediate after he gets even close to doing the right move at first, but doesn't need to be a five-minute loving session. Just a nice pat or rub and a gentle word, then start over. Require that his effort be more correct each time before stopping the cue and giving praise.

I also like what Golden Horse said about starting with teaching the cue on the off-side first, for your horse. Teach the horse the cue first, where you are in a position to really give a solid cue, if necessary, without putting yourself in the dangerous position of having the horse jump into you. In other words, if your horse isn't responding and you have to give it a real "whack" to get him to move his end, he may suddenly move very vigorously away from the signal. You don't want that move to be right into you standing there on a chair! After he understands the cue, then teach him to execute the move with the same cue, with you on the opposite side from the cue (left side), where he moves toward you, rather than away.

Painted Horse 01-17-2013 08:05 PM

This is building precept upon precept.

For example. My horses already know that if I cluck to them, That means move and they start looking for directions on which way to move. So my teaching them is just showing them which direction to move their feet.

If your horses are not already trained to that level. Then you may need to start with just asking them to move away from you when you press a thumb into their ribs and kiss at them. Get them comfortable moving when asked, then it's just a matter of changing directions.

bbsmfg3 01-18-2013 12:25 AM

It's just my opinion, but I prefer to use my finger or a stick rather than a whip. Seems like they learn a bit faster.

You need to have my wife teach them this. She not only asks them to move but also how much to move, you know like 1/4 step here or there.

Phly 01-18-2013 12:40 AM

I know it's not an answer to the original question, but wouldn't it be easier to be able to walk the horse where you'd like to mount rather then trying to move it around while perched on a rock or fence rail. Guess what I'm saying is your horse will STAND for mounting you don't need to chase it around till it's in position. Example, walk horse perallel to log, get on log, get on horse. Idk just seems easier to me. All ours do it even the low mileage 5yr old.
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JaphyJaphy 01-18-2013 12:49 AM

I ride a horse that does this and I always wondered how they taught him...handy little trick it is.

Golden Horse 01-18-2013 01:14 AM

PHLY, it is very useful to be able to stand a horse up square to a log etc by asking it. I spent a morning working with my flighty mare with this, and she went from not having a clue, to being able to smartly sidestep to the right place when I asked her. I don't have to walk her up square now, I can bring her in from any angle, and just wave a hand at her off side and she will move over. It just seems a really useful thing to be able to ask them to do, but to each their own:wink:

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