How do you get a barn sour horse to go on a trail?

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How do you get a barn sour horse to go on a trail?

This is a discussion on How do you get a barn sour horse to go on a trail? within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • How to make your trail horse keep moving forward
  • Barn sour horse trail

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    08-10-2010, 12:43 AM
Exclamation How do you get a barn sour horse to go on a trail?

Hello, I have a 23 year old gelding, That likes to not go on trails or leave his buddies? What can I do to get him out of that habbit? He just gets so stubborn at times and wont let you do anything with him. Cecil f you try to make him go omewere jhe doesnt want to go he stands there and wnt move, Sometime I sit there for like 20 minutes trying to lead him into the pasture? What is the best thing I could possibly do?
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    08-10-2010, 01:51 AM
I have heard of turning them in a few tight circles until they decide that it's such boring hard work that it would be better to walk on normally. Another approach can be to turn around and cue them to go backwards along the trail... again, until they get so sick of backing up that they agree life would be simpler just to ride straight ahead.

Just to clarify, is he merely stopping and refusing stubbornly, or is he showing any signs of panic and worry. You've got to deal with it differently if he's really worried and on edge as opposed to just being a pain in the neck.
    08-10-2010, 02:59 AM
Hes just really stuborn and doesnt like to move away from his buddies and his pasture..
    08-10-2010, 08:35 AM
Work him harder when he is near his buddies, do some circles, work him off your leg, etc until he is good and tired. Then let him rest at the furthest point away from his buddies (even if it is only 10 feet away). Gradually increase the distance away that he gets to rest. He'll learn that being near his buddies is more work than being away from them.
    08-10-2010, 09:56 AM
Will he let you lead him away from the barn first of all? I don't know what the general opinion is about this but when Tango didn't want to leave the property I would walk her off it first before I got in the saddle again. Not too far, just enough to show him that nothing is going to eat him. She is always calmer and more assured when I walk beside her and she can see me and follow me rather than feel me up on her back, and doing this helped. Within a couple days I was riding all over the countryside.

If your horse is only being stubborn (are you completely sure he's not scared and nervous to leave the others?) then you might just need to be firm and strict with him and take on the mentaliy: "We're doing this, I don't care what you want."
    08-10-2010, 10:01 AM
If he is simply stalling out as you try and lead, carry a buggy whip and tap him on his hip as you walk.

Lead in your right hand and reach around to tap with your left. That way you are facing the direction you need to go.
    08-10-2010, 01:28 PM
Ok. Cecil wont let you lead him really anywere. My sister and I ushally gotogether her horse is made for trails, So he doesnt care. I ushally don't go without another horse for saftey resons! I could try the Buggy whip. I don't honestly no how he will respond. We have two diffrent Barns and when I took him up to "my sisters barn" I tied him up well I got his tack ready and he reared and I think it might of been the electric fence ticking and zapping the plants but he got scared. So I decieded to take him back home to are barn wich is right up the street. When Cecil I try to lead him away then get on him he ushaly turns his head and moves his body but my sister told me that if he does that then grab the lead rope when you are attempting to get on him then if he turns then he'll keep turning until he relizes oh this girl is going to turn me if I don't stand still. ?He has been getting better though! \

    08-10-2010, 01:46 PM
If he won't lead it means he doesn't respect you and you need to make him go. Whatever it takes, get his butt moving when you say move!
    08-10-2010, 02:30 PM
Ohkk I will work on respect
    08-10-2010, 07:28 PM
Drunken walk. The trick is to not ask him to go forward using your legs. The only thing you do is leave the right rein slack, gently pull the left rein away from your horse's neck so he follows his nose and takes a few steps left. Two or three steps later, left rein slack and pull on the right one instead. Keep repeating. This will create a horse that appears to be drunk, but for some reason engages their minds like nothing I've ever experienced. It's funny and productive at the same time. Once you get past his area of discomfort, assuming he's being good, either continue on or let him come back. Try to do one or the other before he starts acting up. You want to reward his efforts while he's still trying. Remember, no legs. They can be on his sides but do not apply pressure. You don't want him to know he's being asked to go forward. Good luck.

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