HOT HOT HOT Barrel Horse
I recently bought my beautiful Arabian Quarter Cross, Charlie. He was used on barrels by his previous owner and was then left at his farm when his old owner decided to move to Hawaii. I was told his old owner had whipped him and only used him to win $$$ on barrels which he did. Now though he only wants to RUN, and he only wants to lope and cut. He doesn't want to walk, although sometimes he will like a dream.
Does anyone have any tips to calm him down at all, I'd love to just be able to take him down the road to the trail without running and loping all the way there...
Lots of slow work no faster than a trot. Start on the ground lunging/round penning. then ask a friend to go with you on a really calm dead headed horse and teach your horse that is ok to go slow. And as always you have to get his respect. if he's wanting to run becuase he's scared your gonna whip him. desensitize him to a whip. If you do this be prepared and very aware of how close he is to you, you don't want him to run you over trying to get away. so go slow.
Another idea for the whip since he's problem is when someone is on him. now work up to this before you do it make sure he trust you. saddle him and get on and warm him up like normal then go into the pen. make sure someone is with you. leave the halter on under the bridle and have the person on the ground hold the rope to keep him under control then desensitize him with the whip while your in the saddle. again go slow untill he understands your not going to hurt him. if he trys to rear you are going to fast. you need teeny tiny baby steps. hope it helps. and by all means if you feel like your going to get hurt get off of him. you might even just try getting the whip above his head. sit on a fence and have someone lead/lunge him by and see how he does. make is as simple as possible.
Depending on where you are more comfortable with, try getting him to a complete stop, then give him a small kick for a walk. If he starts to speed up, start all over again and keep doing it until you have him walking. Then move forward from there. My horse has this problem with other horses are ahead of him. He tries to catch up lol. I tried this method and finally got him to walk all the way home
My horse i just got is acting hot too. What i've been doing is my desenceitizing him. Taking a long leadrope, with tassles or something on the end to make it a little bit heavyer. stand on one of your horses sides, at a 45 degree angle, and swing the rope over his back. He may jump, and spook a little, but you have to try to go with it, dont pull against him, go with it, and wait for him to talk down, then do it again, slowly work your way up to a longer line. Then do the same thing to the other side. Next you need to senceatize him. So then you lunge him, but to get him responsive, and using the thinking side of his brain, you need to do this: You will need a long whip. Start off by lunging the horse in one direction, then if the horse is going to fast, or you simply want him to stop, pull the longeline inwards towards your bellybutton. and with the other hand step out in the derection of his hindquarters. He should stop, but if he dosn't, try again. This is getting him to think, and that is the first step in getting your horse to calm down. And be respectful. work with going both directions. When you are completed that, do some descensatizing again. (oh and when you are lunging, wait for your horse to lick its lips, or blink his eyes, that shows hes using the thinknig side of his brain).
Work on that for a while, and then when you are eventually ready to go under saddle try this. If your horse does not walk, trot, or go whatever gair you ask do this; if you are trying to get your horse to simply walk, and he is trying to jog, or go faster then that, turn him in a circle, bending him ( if he was a barrel horse, he should be famillular with bending) go both ways, and keep going untill he stops, then try again for a walk, he probably will keep try to jog for a while, but you need to keep circling him. Same with any of the other gates.
Hope this helped
Thank you again for the advice everyone! For an update;; we've been getting better he's desensitized to just about everything now and barely spooks at anything after lots of groundwork and bonding. He greets me at the gate and knows he has nothing to fear.
As for the riding. He's been getting better, I can ride him easier bareback then anything, he listens to leg cues, neck reining, voice commands, pretty much anything. I thought maybe his saddle fir wrong, but after having it looked at and looking at his sweat marks it's all fine. I think he still has that barrel get up and go mentality. In my opinion, after seeing the stress barrel racing puts on a horse I can't bring myself to even run him on a barrel pattern. He'll stand by the gate when I'm on him just as if he was at a race, if I'm walking him and let him go he'll go right back, and get all nervous trying to figure out if he's doing what's right. He's a nervous wreck and I'm sure it's a matter of previous training, but also the barrel mentality. I'm sure many people can agree with this. I imagine there are better ways to train your horse on barrels, but he wasn't taught well.
Now, back to what I was saying. I've been able to ride him bareback, all around the farm, down the road, everywhere. I've been working with his saddle work and as long as he's not confined in an "arena", corral or pen he's getting better. He will move and go in the direction I tell him, the turning him when he starts going only made him more excited at first, but now it works wonderfully. He's learning he can trust me, and I can trust him. I know he never wants to hurt me, he thinks I just want him to run like he only knows. That's not the case, we're slowly working on slowing down. If anyone has any good exercises groundwork wise, or in the saddle that again would work on slowing him down let me know. (:
This was very early in the morning, he was being pestered by the little mini, so I got him out for a nice ride. (:
I'm glad to hear he is doing better. the best thing is lots of slow work. I think it is interesting that you can ride him easier bareback.my mare is like that, although she isnt a barrel horse, she associates the saddle with hard work and sometimes puts up a fuss, when i ride her bareback she is very plesant, ofcourse we dont do more than a walk and trot,lol. she is very bouncey and I don't care to fall off.lol. I was feeling adventrous the other day and jumped a tenytiny X with her,but she didnt really have to jump it was more of an over emphasied step.lol but i stay on, so kudos to you for being able to ride a barrel horse bareback! I think it is great that you are building his trust and are able to untrain him, and train him the way he needs to be!
He has soulful eyes..
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