What would you recommend?
My gelding-Tejas- will be home next Saturday. Unfortunately his previous owner didn't do much with him other than halter break him. He is 5 yrs old and huge. I'm wanting to groom him, and give him some TLC. I'd rather start out building a bond with him before I just start bossing him around. I'm worried that he might be a little pushy about standing still for brushing, picking his hooves, etc.
Would you feed him during?- after?
Should I tie him or let him graze and enjoy the grooming sessions?
How would you teach this guy respect during something as simple as grooming?
What are your experiences with big uneducated babies?
I can make cross ties. I do not have stocks.
Dose he even know how to tie? I would not mess with him while feeding. Let that be his time. I dont like people messing with me when i eat. He probable will not have a tolernce for this as a broke older horse will.
teach him how to tie, groom him, work with him on the ground, and teach him how to lunge. i would treat him like any 2yo that knows nothing. the best way to built a bond with him is to be a good leader for him, dont think of that as bossing him around.
Its great that you want to build a bond with your horse, but let me tell you right now, he is going to test you to see who is on top or bottom. Make sure you end up on top, or you really will have a problem. In other words, you can spoil him, pet him, love on him but don't let him invade your space, nip, throw his head, etc without correction. I promise it wont ruin your bonding, and in fact may help strengthen the bond as he learns to respect you and your space.
Personally, I do NOT feed my horse when I groom her. She can eat later, and it usually just becomes a distraction. Same goes for grazing. When I groom my horse, she needs to pay attention to me. Especially since you got a "big baby:-P" on your hands, he needs to pay attention to you so he doesn't step on you, etc.
If he knows how to tie, you can tie him. Make sure to tie him using a safety knot, and practice releasing the knot just in case of freak outs, or have someone hold him. He'll learn that grooming is a time when he needs to pay attention to you, but he will learn to enjoy these times :)
Remember, whenever you are around your horse, he is learning about you and you are teaching him something. Therefore, when grooming him, make him be respectful no matter what you do. Big uneducated horses should be treated no different than small uneducated horses. They need to be taught to be respectful of humans, that way no one gets hurt.
Sorry for the novel, hope it answered your questions. Good luck :-)
Cross ties are something you train a horse to stand in. They are not for an unbroken, largely untrained and untested 5 year old horse. His first lesson, if he has not had it yet, is standing tied up. You should always tie a horse with a bowline knotted neck rope that has the end pass through the halter ring. Then, if you can, you use two posts.. one you take a single wrap around then then you actually tie your quick release knot on the second post.
Of course, I would not just haul off and tie the horse up in a new place and the rest. You should start by just handling him with a halter and a lead on.. get to know each other.. lead him around and let him get to know you.
When I was 13 I got my first horse. He was a nice calm sort.. and trained better than the horse you have here. Our family used to take walks.. hikes.. and if we could we took the horse along much like a dog on a leash. I know that sounds funny but that horse was a member of the family and he knew every one of us. Maybe we were nuts (and the neighbors would have agreed) but that horse never forgot anyone of us.. and he moved with me all over the place.
You might want to do things like this.. assuming this boy is very very well halter broke.
Take your time. I would have him for a month before starting any serious work other than leading and letting him know he cannot crowd you and things like that. I would also start working on pikcing up his feet. A horse that allows you to handle his feet is a horse that trusts you not to do anything harmful to him.
I agree with a lot of the above. I would also recommend getting a rope halter. They just listen better with them than the web halters. Take him for walks if you can. One great way I trained my 2yo to stay out of my space was to walk him on an old dirt road. Him in one track, me in the other. When he got too close to me I would twirl the lead rope in between us and he would get back in his space. Treat every moment as a training moment. I am sure you will love this new adventure!
The current owner did mention that he makes "ugly faces" around feeding time. I will probably feed him after grooming him,and then still love on him while he eats. I want to make sure he knows I'm not there to interrupt him feeding his face, but at the same time his ugly faces will not make me leave. That is a great idea about taking him on walks. I will see how halter broken he really is and then make that decision. I bought a rope halter and a nylon halter for back up. We are going to have a lot of 1 on 1 time.
My other main concern is taking him away from the mare. I do not want him to walk himself into a colic after mom leaves. We are having her spend the night in the pen next to him , and then taking her to her home the next day. He will have another gelding in the pen next to him, but I'm not sure what kind of tantrum he will still have. The fence is safe, but I dont want him to worry himself sick. =[
As a previous poster said - leave him alone at meal time. It's his time. I personally try to do as little as possible with a horse in a stall. I consider it their private space. You may inadvertently cause him to try and rush his meal - and that could result in choke or colic.
Feed is a necessary thing for a horse. Feeding or grazing a horse does not create a bond. It fills a need with the horse.
Any suggestions on keeping him somewhat relaxed when the mare has to leave?
Maybe it was just luck but I never had a horse worry himself sick. I always made sure the horse left was tanked up on lots of nice long stem grass hay (no grain) for a few hours before.
Tincture of time was applied and the horse would settle.. tho it can take a day or two sometimes. I mean it really is not a lot different than weaning a single foal and I never had one get sick from that either.
It is noisy. Get ear plugs.
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