Spooking at Small Dogs - Page 2

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Spooking at Small Dogs

This is a discussion on Spooking at Small Dogs within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Hard horse training with whip
  • Dressage whip vs dog

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    05-03-2012, 12:12 AM
A cat darted out under my inexperienced horse this past fall, actually colliding into his legs (it was watching the horse ahead of us). I landed on the gravel road and broke a rib. Thankfully, my helmet-less head barely kissed the ground - I couldn't BELIEVE I'd forgotten it!

Loose dog off its own property is always fair game. Warn the neighbour that your safety is not an option and neither is his loose canines. Chase them down, bark at them with your biggest voice. Get animal control involved if this does not work.

Polite is NOT worth you becoming permanently paralysed from an accident.
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    05-03-2012, 12:13 AM
I am looking into investing in a water gun- they make some with pretty good distances that I can hang from a rifle strap :)

I'll be sure to let Rebel get used to it before I carry it- I would never spray him of course.

I've never carried a crop before while riding- and at the risk of sounding stupid, I am not sure about the difference between a crop and a dressage whip. I worry that I would drop it or accidentally hit Rebel with it. I'm such a clutz XD
    05-03-2012, 12:14 AM
If you want to carry something, do paintball gun. It scares the dog AND warns the owner big time
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    05-03-2012, 06:09 AM
Originally Posted by HannahC    
I've never carried a crop before while riding- and at the risk of sounding stupid, I am not sure about the difference between a crop and a dressage whip. I worry that I would drop it or accidentally hit Rebel with it. I'm such a clutz XD
Crop: short whip (maybe 24 - 26 inches)

Dressage whip: long (38 - 45 inches)

Most crops have a wrist loop so dropping them is not that easy. I've never seen a dressage whip with a wrist loop (not to say they don't exist or you couldn't make out out of parachute cord and duct tape), but in 9 months of riding with one I've dropped it once. And I direct rein so I have a rein in each hand. I think I was messing around adjusting a stirrup and dropped the whip. I've never lost it while actually riding.

When you carry a dressage whip, it lies over your thigh so it's pretty hard to hit the horse accidentally. And unless the horse is mental, a light brushing with the whip should not mean anything to them.

Here's how you carry a whip, you flick your wrist out to apply it back just behind your leg.

    05-03-2012, 07:19 AM
I have had experience in owning a mare who hated small animals around her... like most, it scared her and she couldn't locate the threat as well as a larger animal. I was once riding around my boarding property that was surrounded by houses that had a little of land each, like a lane of small lifestyle properties... anyway one of them had this fancy long haired little dog (for the life of me I couldn't tell you the breed) and it would run around the lane and onto our property without supervision. I would always shoo it away before it got near the horses, but this time since I was riding, I didn't get as much chance to react. But my horse did and as it came towards us yapping its head off she swung her hind leg out and connected with it... the dog spun around yelping it's head off and took for home before I could dismount and check if it was okay. I felt guilty that my horse most probably caused some kind of injury (I didn't even know which house it came from and it was a private lane with a special gate lock so visitors couldn't just come down it) but at the end of the day, after speaking with our property manager, they told me I wasn't liable as the accident happened on our property which was also private and it is up to dog owners to be responsible and look after them. As a dog owner myself, I felt terrible, but would have never allowed my dog even in the country to roam without supervision.

This mare in particular didn't like little animals though, and feral rabbits and even a hedgehog made the mistake of venturing close to her... she was an absolute delight to anything she could see well however.

If the owner of this dog doesn't want to see it crumpled in a mess when Rebel gets to the point of not tolerating this little intruder, I'd suggest you do something about it. At the end of the day like others said, it's just so not worth the risk - to all parties involved.
    05-03-2012, 09:18 AM
I'm not at all sure why someone would feel responsible if the horse they are riding kicks a loose dog that is annoying it, even if it happens on a public right of way.

A) Dogs are not supposed to be loose in most locations.

B) Even if they are in a location where leashes are not required, they are supposed to be under control.

C) Horses do what they do to protect themselves.

D) Dogs are not allowed to harass livestock.

E) In most US states dogs can be killed on the spot for doing D) above.
    05-03-2012, 09:51 AM
Originally Posted by mildot    
I'm not at all sure why someone would feel responsible if the horse they are riding kicks a loose dog that is annoying it, even if it happens on a public right of way.

In my case it was a reaction out of being a dog owner myself. I didn't feel the need to go and say "I'm so sorry your dog in which you let roam around everywhere harrassed my horse and she kicked it. I feel responsible." ... I never felt responsible in the slightest - she reacted out of fear. I did feel bad because it had to learn its lesson in a hard way. Over here in NZ our animals laws are incredibly relaxed compared to the US (which many have been trying to advocate for change as too many cases slip by now which are disgusting), however you are right, dogs are not allowed to harrass livestock. I had an incident with this... a husky escaped from his owner and took off down the road to the farms at the end ... after attacking a couple of sheep, she came into our paddocks, lunged at my older gelding who perhaps didn't move as fast as the mares did, attacked his neck (not too deeply but enough to send me into a panic) and one of his back legs before taking off further onto the property next door. I arrived at the paddocks unaware maybe ten minutes after the attack, found my horse the way he was, and then noticed what I thought was a "wolf" weaving in and out of the trees. She went through the boundary fence and started harrassing a foal.

The result? This dog despite destroying two sheep, attacking my horse and I think she was caught before she laid damage on the foal, is still alive. The owners paid for all bills... and had a previous clean record. Despite her taste for blood, the dog was given a second chance to life. Whenever outside she has to wear a muzzle and is labelled a "dangerous dog". I know for a fact, if this was America, the dog would be dead. Its interesting, if a dog attacks a person, there is less hesitation to put it to sleep. But I found it really interesting and disgusting that this dog was allowed to live. The owners were lovely... but I was disappointed. The SPCA did really nothing other than advocate the contact between parties. I attempted to fight this, and even contacted free legal aide (student at the time)... I was actually told it would be a lengthy, costly affair to do anything about it.

Sometimes I wish for your laws in the US. Here, animal rights are below substandard.

    05-03-2012, 02:37 PM
Thank you mildot for the pictures! They were really helpful! Rebel has been trained with spurs, but since I didn't have any when I test rode him, his owners loaned me a crop. I think I maybe barely touched him it twice. I ride western, so I mostly neck rein, I only direct rein when Rebel needs a bit of help, since he has just almost mastered the neck reining.

Haha, the paintball gun is something I thought of also, but those things seriously hurt. I know I would be likely to accidentally shoot myself in the foot.

Ohmyitschelle, that is terrible about the husky, I am so glad that none of your animals were seriously hurt. I would have felt bad if Rebel had kicked this dog also- like it's been mentioned, the dog would deserve it, but I never like to see any animal in pain.

The little dog did retreat when I yelled at it- I think. It's a little hard to remember because Rebel was bolting and crow hopping, the dog was yapping, and I was simultaneously yelling for my dog Larry, and yelling at the little dog. So it's hard to tell which thing actually had an effect.

Larry normally handles most of the dog business for me- but he's getting older and doesn't keep up as well as he used to.

As for leading Rebel on foot sometime past the fluffy beast's house- would you guys recommend a lunge line or a lead rope?
    05-03-2012, 03:33 PM
Originally Posted by HannahC    
I ride western, so I mostly neck rein,
The pics I posted is how you use one when riding with a rein in each hand in contact, like I do.

With both loose reins in one hand, you can easily hold the whip however you like with the free hand.

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