Problems being tied, need help
My friend has a bunch of horses that she broke and trained herself, some of them are the best horses I've ever rode in my life. They all do amazing on trails and dont spook at anything, are super receptive to commands and will go through anything you tell them to.
However, lol, she has one exception. She has this beautiful 5 year old buckskin paint gelding named Vegas. When she got him as a two year old she really just needed a riding horse and kinda...skipped over some ground work she should have done and rushed things. He's an awesome rider, super confident, neck reins like a dream, will do anything to ask of him with no problem.
His problems on the ground. He panicks whenever he's tied and will not stand to be saddled. He pivots, rears, tosses his weight around. Now sure, you put him in cross ties you can get a saddle on him, and once the saddles on he's perfect, but how can you have a trail horse to cant tie anywhere? What do you do if you had to dismount on the trail and he freaks out and you cant get back on?
Dont get me wrong, this horse is a sweety, and very polite in the pasture, he just needs major work on his groundwork. Once he goes into panick mode it take a long time to calm him back down. My friend doesn't have anytime to work with him and has considered selling him a few times. Shes told me that if I think I can work with him, I can have him.
If anyone knows how I can work with him, please let me know. This horse has a ton of potential and I hate to see it wasted.
YES you can work with him, but it will probably require some retraining. If my guess is correct, the horse is good most of the time. My aunt had a mare like this, someone completely skipped the ground training. Gotta be careful, I was riding said mare, my stirrup broke, and she reared me off because she had not been desensitized or taught how to handle her fear.
Don't ride for a while, but work on just groundwork. Look at this thread for some sound advice http://www.horseforum.com/horse-trai...ld-help-97517/
I would start from square 1. I had to do this with my gelding too, back when I bought him in April. He'd freak until you got a saddle on, then ride great. I stopped riding him and fixed his problems. Then I started riding again. It took me 2 months just to fix his holes. But it is definitely possible to do. My horse used to freak, run through lead ropes, and bite. He does none of those now and stands like a champ. It is very possible to turn the horse around.
The first thing I would teach him is basic respect on the ground, then move on to handling fear, then progress to lunging, picking up feet, haltering, leading well, go over all the basics to make sure there are no holes in his training. Then teach him to stand tied, sack him out, bridle him, teach him to flex, bend, and move off pressure on the ground. THEN ride him, and teach him the same things from the saddle.
Yup, back to square one is a good idea. Pretend to yourself that he's not broke at all. I bet the results will be something amazing when you're done.
I have no idea how to train a horse, and there's no arena or round pen to work it. What are a few basics I can start doing with him until i get the help of someone with more experience?
I suggest you read the thread on here: http://www.horseforum.com/horse-training/every-rider-trainer-every-time-you-85012/ It will help tremendously to get some basics in your head.
What experience do you have with horses? And I do not ask to "judge your ability" I just want to see what you have done and what you are comfortable with. :D
Basics to me are the following: Tying, leading (and I mean leading, not draggind), picking up and holding all 4 feet, haltering (easy to catch), clipping, bathing, loading, and being taught to handle fear.
There is no secret key to training, and there is no amazing excersize. What makes a good trainer is the ability to respond to a hrose and correct unwanted behavior in a quick and effective way. So do the basics with this horse, and if he gives you crud along the way, stop and correct it.
Example: He balks when leading (won't move forward). Get that sucker MOVING. Start driving him forward with a whip or crop, then keep going with what you were originally going to do.
Another Example: Picking up feet, if he puts weight on you, I usually belt them in the stomach (granted I know my horse well, and know he won't kick). If he tries to put his foot down, don't let him and only release when he is calm. (If he manages to get away with putting his foot down, immediately ask for his foot again) If this doesn't work, use a rope to pick up his foot.
The key in both examples is perseverance and patience. They need to know that you will keep going until you get the correct response.
Well I guess I know more about training then I thought, because these are the things I work on with every horse before I ever saddle them. I just thought it ws common sense lol. I usually do all these things with every horse I work with becasue they've usually been neglected and need to re-learn basic manners and get used to people again. I didnt realize that was comsidered groundwork with horses I thought it was common sense and "groundwork" was something special lol.
And I read that thread a long time ago when I first started. I pretty much just talks about everything I already know. The way I put it is that my training method is being more stubborn then they are. If a horse doesn't do what I ask, we'll do it again, and again, and again, however long it takes for them to do it right and the first time I ask. If a horse I'm riding spooks at something we'll go back and do it again until it no longer bothers them. I always just considered this sort of thing what you do when you work with a horse, I never really counted it as training.
I dont really know what to tell you about my experience with horses. I work with a couple horse rescues 4-5 days a week in any spare time I have between my 2 jobs. Both rescues and my friend trust me enough to let me come and work with or saddle up whenever I'd like and go for a ride. If one of the horses are gone they assume I have them lol. I get riding instruction from my friend or one of the ladies at the rescue whenever we go riding together but nothing formal.
The hardest thing I've ever done with a horse was working with a horse named Spirit who was severely herdbound and had been left to pasture with little human contact for two years. She would drip sweat, scream, toss her weight around, paw at the ground, pretty much flip out the second she was away from the herd. It took the end of winter and most of the spring, but I can now saddle her up and ride her by ourselves a couple miles over to my grandmas house without any problems.
Ive worked with a couple other horses to break them of bad habbits. Blue was super head shy and would rear the second you tried to grab his halter. He can now be led around safely, but I still wouldnt recommend a stranger moving suddenly towards his face. It was just a matter of showing him that I wasnt going to hurt him and treating and praising him whenever he let me pet his face.
I worked with a Mustang named Nevada who had trust issues with people and was almost impossible to catch. She came in with Spirit and had been left alone too long. I can walk up to her in the pasture and ride her back to the barn with a halter and lead rope now. I think the only other problem case was a horse named Goldie who the ranch owner call completely useless because she would to the exact opposite of what you asked while riding. Honestly I just think the ladies an idiot and some horses dont respond well to screaming and being beat with a crop the second they dont do what you ask. I have no problems riding her, she just likes someone to be gentle with her.
Woah sorry for the novel lol. I dont really know what else to tell you about my "training experience". I guess I usually go with my gutt feeling when it comes to horses and keep things simple.
Sounds like you've got a good place to start. I'm interested to see how it goes.
Well spirit, you are a heck of a lot further along then most people. If you have successfully trained through the bad problems, and are "stubborn" as you say, then you should be just fine. That, combined with an eye for detail, ability to adjust, ability to read a horse's body language, and a lot of patience are what make a good trainer in my opinion.
You'd be surprised how many people don't have "common sense" or "horse sense" as I like to call it.
I'm very interested to see how the training goes :D
Ok so yesterday me and my friend (his owner) took him out to work on some ground work. Weve kept him up in the area (the flat pasture we use for training or let the little kids ride in) by himself for the last few days. At first he threw a fit, charging the fence line, running circles, tossing his head and bucking around, but once he realized no one was paying attention he calmed down. We put my mare Sprinkles (no, I didn't name her lol) up with him, one because were doing some serious riding to get in shape for the big ride a its easier if I don't have to call her up from the fields, and two because Vegas was calmed down and we felt bad for him alone lol.
He was actually pretty easy to catch, and it turns out he halters and leads really nice. My friend told me she actually used to show him in halter so he has really good manners as long as you dont tie him. After working on his halter manners for a bit. We looped his lead around the cemented hitching posts they have, and every time he freaked and pulled we'd loosen the tention, then slowly pull him back towards the post. We did that for a while but didnt want to rush anything.
After that we went for a bareback ride with the kids, me riding Sprinkles with a niece in front and a nephew in back lol, and my friend leading Vegas with two of her nephews on him. Vegas is actually a super sweet boy and stood for an hour letting the kids braid his mane and pull burrs out of his tail. It was super cute to watch.
I think I might have worried too much about working with him. Granted we havent worked on trying to saddle him yet, but I think it might be more of a fear issue then a manners issue. It might just be a matter of figuring out where the fear stems from.
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