Ok so I really enjoy going out on trail rides to keep my horses from doing the same things every ride but I generally am by myself so I have a few questions.
first I'll explain:
If we have another horse/rider with us she is a dream I drop the reins and she walks out like she's done it everyday of her life.Now if we are alone shes a nightmare :evil:! We get about 5 mins away from the property and she begins calling and prancing and ignoring me completely. I have tried doing little patterns/circling trying to keep her mind off of it but this only works for the first couple of times. Also if i try to trot her out she tries to take off so I am limited to only taking her on the trail when i can get someone to come with me and my preferred 'new rider' horse doesn't walk out quite as fast as jubee does so its difficult sometimes
here are my questions:
1.Would I be better off taking her out anyways multiple times a week anyways to break her of this or try and find new buddies?
2.What are some things I can do to keep her busy on the trail when we are alone?
3. Is she buddy sour or just being bratty?
Just so everyone doesn't jump my bones no I do not let her get a way with this behavior the couple of times we have gone alone as shes acting up I make her work take her onto the hillier(word?? hah) trails circle her out in the desert basically work her bumm off but it hasn't seemed to do anything the second I ask her to just walk out her focus is completely lost again so any help would be enjoyed! :]
I'd say she's being herd bound-- my mare does the same thing, mainly because I don't take her out to ride by ourselves that often. What I'm doing is riding her around where the other horses are, then going out of sight, then coming back. The driveway to the pasture is short, so the other day we went down the drive and across the street, turned around and came back. Just baby steps. She has to get used to the fact that leaving the other horses doesn't mean you're leaving for good. Your horse's biggest fear right now might be "If we leave, I may never see them again!"
Ditto what MusicalMarie said. Ride out several times a week and gradually increase the time/distance, eventually she will figure it out:)
Well, it depends. Are you serious about trail riding? Do you want to take her out alone a lot, or are you content just waiting until you have a buddy? I know a lot of people who will only trail ride if they have someone else to ride with, and that's fine.
In any case, being able to ride alone is a good "skill" for a horse to have, and taking her out alone consistently will find her settling down. As with anything, it takes practise and consistency.
The best thing that you can do is make sure you are totally calm. I have found that 95% of all my troubles on the trail start on days when I'm feeling angry, nervous or frustrated.
I really like to bring along my iPod and speakers in the saddle bags and play music. It gives me something to focus on besides feeding my greenie's anxiety, and I have also found that the horse, too, seems to listen to it.
As for making her focus, quiet down, and get her attention back on you...you might not like what I'm going to say, but there's not really a whole lot you can do besides time and ride her a lot. When I first began taking my younger horse on trails alone, I was always so concerned that she wasn't focusing on me, so I'd make her do circles and serpentines and ridiculous shapes, and all it really did was make her more: "OMG!" If she gets really upset about something, I'll leg yield or bump with my legs to let her know I'm still here, but for the most part, I just let her do her thing. She still likes to look around, but I'm finding that she is settling down and the more I get her on the trails, the more relaxed she is with each ride.
Our property isn't huuge but there is a place away from all sight of the other horses that I ride her often sort of half out of the arean half in it when i work her.
pinto-hah i completely understand there isn't much I can do I sort of figured that but I know a few people have some little tricks up their sleeves that sometimes work so it was worth a shot :].
Also I'm not dead set have to ride by myself, I would just like to be able to when I want to or don't have someone to ride with and if I ever sell her I would like her to have that skill and not make the new owners have to fight with it. Plus its a good cool out after a work out and a work out in itself.
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