help me pleaz!
hi, i just got registered on this site, but i really would like some help with my horse. He is a registered american quarter horse and is about 8-9 years old now. I got him when he was about 4 and he was a great horse, but at the time i was only 7, and i was really immature about everything. :oops: i let that horse get really out of shape and he has such a bad attitute now. i'm 15 going to be 16 in july and i really want to help my relationship with him. i want to be able to ride him with confidence like i used to. i've tried and given up before but this time i'm not going to give up i just don't want to do this the wrong way. i want it to work. so if anyone has ANY suggestions, OR if u have been in this situation before PLEAZ help me out. :) [/i]
do you have specifics
What specifically do you mean by a bad attitude?
How often do you spend time with him?
ok by a bad attitude i mean he had a tendancy to try to bite, but i corrected that (for the most part). the only thing that i cannot STAND is a horse that bites. i smacked him on the nose when he made a biting motion, umm when u try to ride him, its like he'll do ANYTHING to get out of it. he rubs you (while ur in the saddle) up against the round pen, yet you can't take him out of that because he's even worse behaved. he'll try to run off or just act up by fidgeting. i thought it was a pain problem, so i asked the vet to come out and it has nothing to do with pain he says. oh and also my dad can get on Popper (my horse), and he will be close to fine. I don't know what else i can do?!?!
and to your question about how much i'm with him, i am down at the barn everyday, but not necassarily with him, i'm not with him that much anymore, but the problems came even when i was with him everyday.
It sounds as though he needs to learn and accept that you’re the boss and he needs to learn that he must listen to you and behave.
This is what I would do…
Start back to square one to establish you as the boss.
Work him on the ground by walking him in hand and having him to walk and stop, walk and stop, walk and stop for about 15 to 20 minutes a day for about two weeks. I would do it at feeding time; before he gets his feed. Be firm with your walk and stop and reprimand him when he acts up.. Not with anger! At the moment he doesn’t listen to your command wack him. For example if he walks before you give him the command to walk (the command would be with your voice and the movement of your right foot) then tell him NO! and put your left hand, in front of his noise to make him stop. I carry a ride crop and the rest of the lead rope in my hand when I do this. If the left hand doesn’t work then take the crop and wack him in the chest with out saying anything and then when he stands quietly start the walk command. When you wack him your getting his attention on you so you don’t need to do it angerly, but don’t do it so light that he ignores you. You want him to have all his attention on you while you do this. BE Strong and to the point with your actions, you want him to rely on you for his direction.
Now if he doesn’t move out on the walk use your left hand that is holding the balance of the lead rope and crop and reach behind you and give him a warning by tapping one time on his side or hind quarter. If he still refuses to move out get his attention by tapping him a little harder. Remember each time to use the verbal command walk and move your right foot forward.
If you do this each day YOUR confidence will grow in telling your horse to pay attention to you and he will respect that.
If you ever study horses in the wild there will be an alpha mare that will tell everyone when its time to eat and when its time to sleep and when its time to drink. The alpha mare is trusted by all the other mares because she is STRONG.
Try working with him today for about 10 – 15 minutes today and tell me how you felt after you completed the work with him. Your first day might not be the best of experiences between you two, but keep doing this everyday for about two weeks and you will see with each day he will start relying on you for instruction.
Don’t let yourself be distracted by other things around you pay close attention to your task and focus.
Back to the feeding time thing; It shows him you have control of the food and it also rewards him after your training session. You don’t have to do this during feeding time, but I think that is the best opportunity to show your horse your power over him.
and always remember to keep your cool and have respect and kindness for him!
If you don't want to start on the ground here is my suggestion for the rubbing up against the round pen....
turn him in the opposite direction if he rubs you against the round pen... with out punishment. Turning in the opposite direction contiunously should give him the message. Each time he rubs turn him in the other direction. This too might take several, several several sessions, but you need to get him to respect you and as long as you show him that he you are in control he will rely on you for instruction. Not to mention this will make you stronger as the days go by. If you have any fear in doing any of these things you must put that fear in a closet or you will never ber able to move forward. Be strong andconsistent.
My horse Tristan was like that, so let's see what kind of advice I can offer.
As for biting you've done the right thing. Boping him on the nose will stop the behavior.
As for the riding problem start riding him at a walk quite a bit, you can more easily focus on what he's doing. Just make him obey you. If he rubs you into the fencing/wall just leg yield/rein him over. Also keep him to the centre of the arena, where he can't rub into anything. Trot and Walk him in some circles. If you don't already try some Dressage patterns. Another idea is to always keep him busy. Don't stay in one pace for too long, switch back and forth.
Sorry if my advice isn't helpful. It worked with Tristan, so maybe it'll work for you too. It is kind of stressful working with 1000 pound animals, isn't it?
EDIT: Definately try Mokinho's advice first. They sound like they know much more than me.
thanx for your advice, when i got off of the internet on saturday i did whave u told me. i went down to see popper and he actually seemed surprised that i attempted to walk him. he was ok for the first 5 minutes or so then he started to test me, he started getting really close to me, walking almost on top of me! so i corrected him but he kept doing it. he would back-up very well if that was the command by itself but as soon as we started walking forward again he would get to close again! if you have any advice to make him BACK UP, off of my back then please help me out! (i ended up walking him for about 13 minutes)
ok then on sunday i went down to walk him and i walked him around for abou 10 minutes, he was a little better but seemed resistant to walk up to me, because he knew what was going to happen, he was going to have to walk!
and today, (monday). i went out and walked him around for about 10 minutes, he was ok, but he is still getting on my back, and today he was a little worse. is he just waiting for me to give in again? and stop walking him? i don't know if i can keep up with him being so bad! i just need a way to keep him off my back, and he also knows that i have a past of giving up, and i think thats what he's trying to do.
but mokinho please help me out some more, i'm not planning on giving up this time!
thanx for your advice i'll be sure to use it when i get done walking popper for the two weeks that mokinho suggested!
He shouldn't be behind you when you start off.
He shouldn't be positioned behind you when you give the command to walk. His head should be slightly in front of you and you should be inline with his sholder or slightly behind you.
It will take you awhile to adjust and it will take him awhile to adjust as well. DON'T get frustrated. Just as an artist continually works at their craft you too must continually work at it to succeed!
When you say walk, take a step with your right foot he too should start his walk. If he doesn't at those first commands then give him direction by reaching behind you and tapping him. Don't keep walking if he doesn't complie with the very first command.
Here comes the hard part....
If he is walking in your space turn around and wack him one in the chest with the crop or the lead line and say NO! and then after he settels down position your self infront of his shoulder and his head slightly in front of you then do the walk command; if he steps in your space again do the wack and say NO! and do the walk command again. You may have to do this several times. AND I just want you to know that for a time he may be affraid of you, but he will get over that once he realizes that this is how it will be and he will conform and respect you. Don't change the way you work him on this that will only confuse him and then he won't know what to do. Nothing worse than a confused horse :?
Keep on him and you will see that he will change with time and be more willing once he understands what you want. You have to spell that out to him since he doesn't talk our lanquage and we don't talk their lanquage.
Once you establish the ground rules he will look to you for direction on the ground and in the saddle, but you have to explain to him in REPEATED actions what is acceptable and what isnt.
Don't give up he needs you to show/teach him the rules and once you pass all the mile stones you will have a great feeling of success and a more safe horse to interact with.
EDIT: Once you've completed your walk with him and you put him away reward him NOT with food. Tell him he's a good boy and give him a couple of pats. Don't lather him with petting, but make it short and most of all SWEET. Remember to reward him when he does good. If your schooling him Don't stop what your doing to give him a pat, but tell him by singing "GOOOOOD BOOOY"! and continue on with the exercise.
when he shoves you against the round pin, and the fact that he does not do it for your dad, sounds like a riding problem you have, not his training...You need to establish your boss and Make sure that He cant get away with bending you to the round pin wall....Myke use to do this to me..
sorry i couldn't write you back for a while, but the two week walking around stage, had to stop for a while becuz WE HAD A BLIZZARD (kinda haha it just made everything icey and it snowed a lot) so anywayz i couldn't walk him around. i skipped about 3 days so i went down today and started from scratch... i was a little nervous but i didn't let it show. i just walked down to the barn and got his lead rope attatched to the halter...positioned him where you said. (by my shoulder) and started walking. he seemed to be doing much better. i was so excited althogh he did act up once or twice i did try to correct him, (got a little frightened myself) but i think overall it went pretty well. is there anything more i can do to make this go more smooth? pleaz and thanx!
I was wondering how it was going. Mother nature has a way doesn't she. Don't get discouraged. You still have time.
Be patient– persistent – strong – kind yet firm and communicate what your needs to your horse continuously.
It will take time. That’s one thing that we humans seem to be short on in our mind. We want so much for things to be right when we want them to be right, we forget the path we must take to make those things right.
When your horse acts up ask yourself what is your doing that may be causing him to protest. It could be that he is confused as to what it is you want. Keep your communication open with him ALL the time so he knows what it is you want/ask of him.
Remember you are his leader and you must be sure of your actions for him to begin to trust you and follow your lead. So don’t look to him for direction, you must show him the direction you want him to follow and eventually he will no longer question what it is you want him to do; he’ll just follow along.
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