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Hobbles

This is a discussion on Hobbles within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • How do you put on iron hobbles

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    10-17-2012, 10:06 PM
  #11
Yearling
Horse learn quick how to deal with hobbles.
I always introduce hobbles with the horse under control.
Usually with a lead rope attached, So I can stop them if they get too excited.

I think the best way to introduce hobble is lots of green grass underfoot, so the horses are happy to stay put as they graze and just shuffle around.

Don't put hobbles in a horse when his buddies are running to the far end of the lower 40 and he wants to join them. Put the horse in a situation where he is happy to stay put, put the hobbles on and then ask for a small step. He will stumble the first few steps, But will catch on pretty quick. After they know the hobbles are there, I leave them to graze and keep an eye on them. They figure it real quick, As long as they are not temped to really try to keep up or run away.
     
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    10-20-2012, 11:39 AM
  #12
Foal
And don't be fooled, once a horse figures out hobbles they can still out run you with no problem !!!
thenrie likes this.
     
    10-20-2012, 12:15 PM
  #13
Green Broke
I have a pair of hobbles but have yet to put hem on my horse. I am worried that he will find some way to hurt himself..

I am thinking about setting up a roundpen.. and soft-ish dirt and using that to work with my horses..

What do you recommend to use first as hobbles? Which ones?

Do you think that horses should learn to be able to be lead by there front feet first like some people say?

Sorry for thread jacking LOL
     
    10-20-2012, 10:07 PM
  #14
Yearling
I trained my mare last year to tether with just one leg on a 20 foot line that I stake in the ground with a pin......find it so much easier to have our lunch on the trail while she grazes and I don't have to hold her LOL
I use a nylon small belt that buckles around her ankle with a ring to hook a lead line onto........she's never once bolted with it or taken off. A friend who rides with me also tethers his horse the same.
     
    10-20-2012, 10:26 PM
  #15
Trained
When I start colts I like to use a burlap sack made into a set of hobbles you twist then tie a square knot in. They conform and usually wont burn their legs if it gets western. The hobbles I pack on my saddle are fairly wide leather and are the single ring figure eights. Not the double rings. Just a personal preference.

Someone one mentioned about horses that learn to run with them, I agree, once they learn, it sucks. My bay horse was basically a three legged horse for all of his three year old year due to a wreck and being crippled and dragging that front left for a months. He is impossible to hobble. He can run quite fast for a three legges horse.
Thunderspark likes this.
     
    10-20-2012, 10:56 PM
  #16
Trained
I trained my horse to hobbles no problem. I made sure she was not going to panic when something restrictive was on her feet first though. I used a soft rope to manipulate all four of her feet first. Then moved to a figure 8 with the rope on her front feet, but not a fully closed loop at any time. I could drop the rope if need be. All that was for naught with her anyway. She could have cared less.

When I put the hobbles on the first time, she just stood there. She thought she couldn't move. Then her back feet could move, but not her front feet. An elephant on a pedestal with all four feet in a tiny little area! Then she learned how to move backwards in them. She got comfortable and decided she should stretch out her front foot to scratch her head. Well, that didn't go as planned and there was a minor explosion for about 3 strides. That was it. She was hobble trained. I love it!

She did run in them once because something scared her, so she's definitely figured it out, but I never seen her do it again. Maybe she would with other horses around.

I don't like the look of those mormon hobbles. I prefer leather or nylon.
Thunderspark likes this.
     
    10-21-2012, 11:22 AM
  #17
Yearling
I don't think you would really use those Mormon hobbles in todays world. There are softer choice available. They had a purpose to keep the indians from stealing horses. A cotton, nylon or leather hobble at the time would have just been cut with a knife.
barrelbeginner likes this.
     
    12-11-2012, 10:01 AM
  #18
Foal
Training horses to accept hobbles was standard procedure a hundred years ago. Horses trained to accept the restraint of hobbles are less like to panic should they become entangled in a rope or wire. Iron hobbles of various types were fairly common and numerous artifact examples remain. Mormon Iron Puzzle Hobbles were as the name implies a puzzle form of the iron hobbles and were intended to discourage theft by those unfamiliar with their closure mechanism. Surprising to most people today is the fact that correctly forged metal hobbles are actually easier on a horse's legs than hobbles made of leather or nylon. The metal slides easily over the hair of the leg with minimal abrasion.
I am in the tenth year of an extensive research project on these hobbles and would appreciate any leads to information on the history of people who used them, blacksmiths who forged them, and in inspecting for database information any known artifacts.
boots and Foxtail Ranch like this.
     
    12-11-2012, 11:45 AM
  #19
Yearling
I always love a good puzzle.
Dennis, I've enjoyed what I seen of your research.
Always fascinated by the impact that mormon pioneers have had on horsemanship and the products that still are in use from designs from long ago..

Mormon Hobbles.
Utah Bags for sawbuck and deckers

Being two that come to mind
     
    12-11-2012, 06:42 PM
  #20
Weanling
My dad and I took 22 Boy Scouts on a 100 miler - pioneer style - through the White Mountains of Arizona the year after I graduated high school (that was a while back). We had 22 Scouts, five adults (including my dad and me), and 32 horses...and one little donkey about the size of a Great Dane. Crossbuck pack saddles, diamond hitches, home made jerky and granola, the whole nine yards. The first night out my dad and I hobbled two of our horses (we had three of our own stock on the trip). The next morning the two hobbled horses were gone! By the tracks it was easy to see they had galloped off, leaving the other 30 horses, and headed for where they thought home must be. I got on the one horse we had left of our own stock and tracked them back nearly five miles. I found them standing at the fence at highway 260 somewhere near Vernal, Arizona. Both had bloody hocks, but no other injuries. They finished the trip with us and healed up fine with no lasting scars or anything.

I still train my horses for hobbles, and I use them like Painted Horse does, for grazing and lunch stops. At night I tie them to a tree. Even while they are grazing I always leave a loooong lead rope attached to the halter and let it drag on the ground. Mine is about 25 feet long or so. I have been saved more than once by being able to grab the end of a long lead while the horse thinks he's still far enough ahead of me! They tend to step on the lead rope when they start to head off, so it slows them down just enough. So far it hasn't happened often enough for them to learn to hold their head to the side to clear the lead. Also, I always make sure at least one horse is tied or I'm holding the lead rope while I snooze at lunchtime. If the others take off, the one tied will let me know about it and I'll have a mount to go get the others. On foot chasing horses in the mountains, wearing cowboy boots, is not fun.

I have used leather and nylon hobbles. I currently use the nylon ones. They're cheaper and require less care (no oiling, just water). After the night described above, I don't leave hobbles on long enough to cause any chafing anymore.
     

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