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Mel 03-03-2007 12:41 PM

Backing a shetland x pony
I have a Shetland x welsh pony who is approximately 10.3 hh, he is 2 years old and has been gelded.

Is it too young to start backing him, if it is too young when should i start to do this?

I have a young daughter who would love to start doing this, so i need some knowledgeable advice as i know very little!!

i would appreciate any thoughts or advice on this.



chicken 03-03-2007 02:13 PM

Yes its too young!
Spend your time playing with him, leading him, grooming him, picking his feet up. Of course when you groom him you can lean right over him and this will get him used to the feel of something on his back. You can have a lot of fun. Make sure he is completely at ease with whatever you do.
I am afraid that if you tried to back him with a young child both pony and child might get a big fright, and one or other could get hurt. When he is in the spring of his 4th year find a confident light rider to bring him on after he has been backed by a trainer.
Small ponies can be quite difficult because they are so small, I had to give up with an Exmoor I had as my daughter was too inexperienced and I was too heavy - she ended up being broken by a western trainer and it took ages because I had scared her. In the end she was fine.
Do get professional help you will have a better pony in the long run.
Good luck!

EquineIllusion 03-03-2007 05:16 PM

I presume you are talking about backing as in getting the horse to accept a saddle but without a rider.
If this is the case, then it is fine.

Horses can be backed from the age of two onwards, although I wouldn't advise you to ride him until atleast 3 years of age.

Mel 03-04-2007 05:37 AM

I understand what you say about making sure everything is done properly etc when training the pony. I suppose what i am asking is will it harm the pony's back to sit on him when he is young,

if it would damage him then i would not do it full stop but if this was not the case and he would allow my daughter to sit on him just for 5 mins at a time, then that is the sort of thing i mean. If he was going to be broken i would get someone professional to do it when he is older.

He is very quiet he has a few undesirable habits like nipping and showing you his backside at times but he is just young and needs to learn a few manners!

Thanks for your support

chicken 03-04-2007 01:49 PM

Sorry I slightly misunderstood.
It will be good for him to have someone sit on his back for a few minutes and won't hurt his back.

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