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Jubilee Rose 12-21-2008 07:55 PM

awww mom, not through the gate!
 
Hi guys, I was hoping someone could give me some advice. My mare has this habit that has started to irritate me because there is no reason for it. Whenever I mount outside of the riding arena, and have to ride into it, through the gate, she puts her head down, stops and refuses to walk through it. She is PERFECTLY fine once she gets inside. And she isn't scared of it, because she doesn't shy away, she just thinks, "Hmm... maybe if I act like I don't want to go in, I won't get ridden today! Yay, day off for me!" It's really annoying because it is NOT necessary and is just bad behaviour plain and simple. She doesn't do this in the ring, and this is one of the VERY FEW issues I actually have with her, since she is pretty much an angel otherwise. I just want her to stop doing it. It takes a lot of kicking to get her going, and even then, I have to get someone to take her and lead her into the ring for me. Like I said, once she's in there, she's an angel. So what should I do?

Thanks! :wink:

NorthernMama 12-21-2008 08:39 PM

Spend a few lessons just walking in and out, in and out, in and out. Get her sick and tired of going in and out, in and out, in and out. When she's better at it and you're about to actually do work in the arena, do the in and out, in and out, in and out before and after your session... get the idea? LOL

Jubilee Rose 12-21-2008 09:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by northernmama (Post 215413)
Spend a few lessons just walking in and out, in and out, in and out. Get her sick and tired of going in and out, in and out, in and out. When she's better at it and you're about to actually do work in the arena, do the in and out, in and out, in and out before and after your session... get the idea? LOL

Thanks northernmama, that sounds like a good plan. :-P

centrestableswendy 12-21-2008 09:58 PM

I agree with Northernmama. Hopefully the problem corrects itself before you have a 2 foot deep trench going in and out of the gate! Good luck and Merry Christmas!

Jubilee Rose 12-22-2008 12:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by centrestableswendy (Post 215441)
I agree with Northernmama. Hopefully the problem corrects itself before you have a 2 foot deep trench going in and out of the gate! Good luck and Merry Christmas!

Yeah, haha. :-P It is an outdoor arena after all. Thanks and Merry Christmas to you too!

smrobs 12-22-2008 01:15 AM

If what northernmamma said doesn't work, you might try turning her in circles whenever she balks. Once you have her feet moving again, ask her to go through the gate. If she stops again, the turn her the other way. Don't let her feet stop moving from the circles before you ask her to go through the gate. When she walks through calmly, then stop, praise her, and then continue with your regular lesson. That works for box-sour roping horses too.

iridehorses 12-22-2008 08:16 AM

Gracie, I would do it the way Smrobs suggested. Treat it like any other obstacle you might encounter on the trail, like a water crossing or bridge. Once in the arena I might change up my routine or maybe just walk around once or twice then out - no work.

It sounds like he is becoming ring sour and what you don't want to do is make it a battle. Kicking and kicking him, or leading him into the ring makes the habit more ingrained. He needs to become a willing partner and understand that you are the alfa horse. He needs to know that every time you go into the ring it will be pleasant and not necessarily a lot of work, either strenuous or mundane.


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