Leadrope for a Bad Leader
Someone before me taught the pony I'm working with that backing up on the ground was an acceptable way of getting out of doing things. he's a truck of a pony and sometimes he's awesome and other times he either runs backwards or tries to run over you (not maliciously, he just gets too close). He also chews leadropes to no end.
What kind of leadrope should I be using to keep his attention? Chains don't work, he backs up even more and i don't want to start a rearing problem by putting him near a wall. He's a kids pony so he has to be good.
I guess I don't know what you mean....Do you mean chains as in stud chains?
I would just use a plain cotton lead rope. You could also get a longer 12' one to double for lunging.
yeah a stud chain. the problem with him is that he doesnt listen. he either steps on you or backs up and won't stop until he hits a fence. i'm just concentrating on major groundwork.
One of those reasons I never give the advise to "back them up" when they act up. It teaches that backing is what to do when they are confused or want to get out of doing whatever your asking. It should never be used as a punishment IMO.
I suggest a nice 10-14' lead rope with a leather popper on the end. When he backs up, direct him forward with one hand and twirl the popper at his rear with the other. Thats going to be a hard habit to break but I think with patience you can do it.
As far as keeping him off you, walk with your elbows out and let him run into them when he comes into your space. You can also use the leather popper on the end of your rope to swing a circle around yourself. If the horse gets close he runs into the popper.
you could try to add a popper yourself if your handy
Unless I'm just taking my horse from A to B, I use a rope halter and a 15 foot nylon lead, no chain. They really encourage duller horses to come off of pressure.
It doesn't sound like you have an equipment issue, though, more of a learned habit. I would carry a stick or dressage whip when he's being led, and when he decides to pop it in reverse, tap him rythmically behind his driveline (Just follow him backwards, keep the lead as slack as possible) until he comes forward, then rub him gently with the stick where you tapped him while he walks forward. If you have a cue stick, you can increase the pressure as he ignores you, but if you're using a dressage whip it's going to be more of an irritation tapping. Traditional whips are too floppy and can really sting if used the same way. Make the right thing easy and the wrong thing hard. :wink:
You may need to establish a personal bubble for yourself with this horse, too, if he's stepping on you or running into you. As you said, Piper, major groundwork.
Have you tried a rope halter? You can have a lot more control because they're thinner and horses don't like to pull against them. My favorite are the clinton anderson halters. they're even thinner rope then the typical rope halters and have double knots on the noseband (on pressure points) so when they pull or pull back they really feel it. i've had to lunge some really REALLY crazy (and huge) horses and always feel very in control with my clinton anderson halters!
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