Teaching an old horse new tricks
I recently purchased another horse, it is a beautiful 12 year old Palamino that may have a little fox trotter in her due to the gait that she has. The previous owner never worked on neck reigning with her, she is really responsive however. The first time I rode her was bareback with two reigns hooked onto her halter and she would go anywhere I desired. I have two issues that I would like to overcome first is that she backs up extremely well, sometimes too well. Anytime you pull back a little on the reigns she puts it in reverse and starts to back up. I like this except for when we go on the trail, she has stepped off of the trail twice now as I have pulled back to slow her down. How can I get her to not back so quickly?
My second issue has to do with the bit. The previous owner said that he didn't always use a bit and would just use the halter with the reigns. Because when you place a bit in the horses mouth she just plays with it. I am currently using a hackamore on her, and she constantly plays with this bit as well. I thought it might be the fitment of the hackamore, so I adjusted it until it seemed to fit perfectly. And she still plays (whips her head around and shakes it) around with it. Is their another bit that may overcome this issue or how can I break her of this habit?
I'm not too sure how to handle the backing up situation. Maybe you can try working her on the ground, and teaching her the difference between "woah" and "back."
As far as the bit situation, you can try and get a bit with rollers, or a copper one. Some horses just want to play, and it doesn't always greatly affect their manner of movement.
Or you can just try and make sure she is being stimulated. Keep her busy and working, then she might not have time to think about the way she can toss the hackamore around.
Just a side note, my friend's horse tosses her head in the crossties, because she likes the sound it makes against the wall. =]
Every horse I have ridden in a hackamore plays with it. usually slipping their lip through it and it drives me mad, but they have all gone very well in it so never saw this as a problem, just silly. Know this doesn't really help much but maybe try a different bit
my pony used to try to bite not play wit lol everything in sight but he really likes french link bits they work really well for him
might want to have his teeth checked. Sometimes they will play excessively with the bit if their teeth need work done.
for the bit thing... try a bitless bridle! It works wonders for my aunts palomino!
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