Tieing: chain or lead?
Lily has a bit of an issue with tieing that I plan to address as soon as this rain stops >=\ On the hitching rail we have chain ties that the other horses get tied to. Obviously, they're a lot less breakable and more permanent than tieing a plain lead on the rail. My question is: should I clip Lily to the chain tie or just a soft lead rope? I don't know how likely it is that she's going to throw a spazz, but if she did would it be better for her to be on the unbreakable chain or the snappable lead? I'm thinking the chain, so she learns that no matter what she does she's not going to break free, but I'm a little concerned she'll hurt herself if she does flip out and a lead would probably provide a quick release before it got to that point. What do you guys think?
I think I would just use a regular rope. Every broken halter or lead rope that I have ever seen failed at the hardware; a broken halter ring or trigger snap, not a snapped rope. I've never tied a horse by a chain, but it stands to reason that more metal components = more places for it to snap. It depends on how heavy the chain is, I suppose, but I've seen beasty thick trigger snaps broken clean off by a panicking horse.
I would go with the lead rope - just incase you need to untie her or cut the lead - until she learns to stand tied at least.
Rope halter ( not leather or nylon) and lead rope. I read your post and the first thing that came to mind was what would happen if she freaked and broke the hitching rail...........
what about one of those ball chains it allpws the rope to move through the ring then it has like a large weight on the bottom that stops them puling any further.
Personally if she freaks out id avoid anything that might not break when you want it to break she could seriously injure herself
Ok thanks everyone...I'll definitely go with the lead rope. The vote seems to be unanimous =)
You want to have the ability to release the horse quickly if something happens. We tie horses using bailing twine so that there is a part to break if the horse freaks or falls. If they don't know how to tie then I would be inclined to just loop the rope around something so that it will unwind without freaking the horse. You can hold the end the first time she pulls back and see how she reacts to the resistance then go from there based on her reaction.
Its much easier to go too slow and deal with minor set backs than it is to go too fast, frigten Lily and create a problem that can take months or years to fix. Go quick release to start with - it always makes life easier!!
I use Polo Pony's suggestion on my mare. After going through many halters with my mare from her sitting back severely I now am in the process of teaching her to tie properly. I loop the lead around the post about 3 times just enough so she can't get loose just by turning her head but at the same time if she completely flips out and could possibly hurt herself it just unwinds and she is safe. But right now with that if she does try to back up or begin to freak out I grab the extra slack hanging to the ground and hold it till she settles down. It seems to be working pretty well. She isn't reacting as badly as she was before. and hasn't sat back so hard that I felt would be safer to just let her go . She has been feeling that resistance and by my voice of "whoa" she has been settling pretty quickly. Just be sure to wear gloves with this technique because you can get pretty bad rope burn the first couple of times.
And make sure its a solid fence :-)
I would think a chain is more likely to break than a good leadrope without snaps & buckles....
I don't advise you tie her solid at all if she's not desensitised & confident being tied. Horses, being prey animals are naturally apt to panic when trapped, and can hurt themselves(& others, & fences, etc) when they fight, regardless of whether they're on something breakable(they can flip, escape...) or unbreakable, in which case they may break themselves instead - neck injuries, esp. from equipment such as thin, strong rope halters. It's also not very productive to future training & getting her to tie confidently if she already has the panic association established.
I would use a long lead (at least 12') and take a couple of wraps around the rail, or if you don't have appropriate rail, you can use something like a 'Blocker Tie Ring'(of which I will always use in a trailer, never tie solid there). This allows her to get used to being 'tied', but if she panics, the rope will slide & she can move her feet, backup & calm down. Then you just reel her back in. I would work in this manner, until she is confident standing without backing up in all sorts of situations before I'd consider a horse safe to tie firm.
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