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MillieSantana 02-17-2013 07:44 PM

Abused Horse Progress
This is just a topic I posted to keep you guys updated on my project. Tips are nice, but this isn't a help topic.

Ok, so this older man moved his 2 mares to our boarding facility(not ours, but my mom is the BM), and one was abused on her head. She doesn't trust, but she's super willing, and trys so hard. Here are her current problems-

Hard to catch- The lady he hired originally to work with her always "had some place to be, and didn't have time to be slow and gentle catching her" and chased her down with a 4-wheeler. Taday we led her buddy(she's slightly buddy dependant) into the round pen, and she followed, and then we let her friend go, and kept her. I lunged her out without a rope(she wouldn't let us close enough to clip one on), and eventually she settled down, I stopped her, and she came right to me(she reacts magorly from release)so then i just did ground work, touched her ears, etc. at one point i put a saddle pad on the gate. She flipped out. So I got her to sniff it, then flung it off the fence, onto the ground. She flipped out. Eventually her reaction got less and less severe until i touched her with it gently and inched it onto her back. She flips out if you grab her halter or touch her head. So she was obviously abused, but she's doing better. I'll get pics for you guys. Thanks if you read the whole thing!

Skyseternalangel 02-17-2013 08:13 PM

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I think you are moving too fast. You should not try to put a saddle on her when you can't even trust her in a halter yet...

hemms 02-17-2013 08:21 PM

Love it OP... Keep posting your work so I can read. Can't believe the other 'trainer' couldn't figure out catching her!
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loosie 02-17-2013 08:28 PM

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Agree with Sky. If she doesn't even trust that you're a Nice Person to be around & is uncatchable, I wouldn't have been lunging her yet myself, let alone anything else. While making a horse run around an inescapable area(eg. 'Join Up' type stuff) can be a bit of a 'quick fix', I'd personally be teaching her in a non confrontational manner with lots of 'approach & retreat', to actually learn to trust you first.

loosie 02-17-2013 08:35 PM

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What's with this submitting replies appearing not to work, then doubling up?? Is it just me??

MillieSantana 02-17-2013 08:37 PM

I completley agree with you guys, and we did try the calmer, slower method, but she really excelled with the method "Trust through respect", so we started head first. Like I said, she's very willing, and trys so hard, so like, I would back her up by shaking the lead rope, and as soon as she backed the length of the rope, I stopped, and she walked right back up to me. If I started on her neck, and gently inched up to her ears and poll, she would shake her head and stuff, but with continous touch, she stopped after a few seconds.

Skyseternalangel 02-17-2013 08:59 PM

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Well as long as it works for her..

I'm glad you're giving her a chance :)

MillieSantana 02-17-2013 09:03 PM

Yeah, she's a beautiful horse, like a buckskin dapple color. She moves great, with long strides. Whoever originally trained her did an awesome job, but after that, something happened to her, and we need to undo that.

loosie 02-17-2013 09:09 PM

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Originally Posted by MillieSantana (Post 1899359)
If I started on her neck, and gently inched up to her ears and poll, she would shake her head and stuff, but with continous touch, she stopped after a few seconds.

Good. Just remember they learn by *instant* association, so it's important to negatively reinforce(remove the pressure) her as soon as she quits jigging around. If she gets really reactive about anything though, I'd consider you've taken it too far/fast & back off, starting again with an 'easier' level.

MillieSantana 02-17-2013 09:20 PM

Yeah, at one point I backed her up, and she reared, and then just sat there, until she finally walked back up to me. I didn't correct her, just let her think it out a second, and she responded, and never reared again.

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