Strange horse behavior

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Strange horse behavior

This is a discussion on Strange horse behavior within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Strange horse behaviour
  • Trail ridding behavior issues

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    06-17-2012, 11:08 PM
Strange horse behavior

I would like to get people's opinion on what might be wrong with my friend's horse. At first we thought it was just the horse being a butt head, but other things he does make us think other wise. It is a Mystery.

Symptoms: Stops randomly and refuses to go while on a trail ride and shakes. It seems like he is afraid of something. The lady that ride him thinks he is afraid of the spots of light that filter through the trees. She also thinks that he might have bad eyes. Another theory she has is that he has a tumor in his brain that is making him act weird.

Another symptoms is that he will high steps and side step into the bushes while riding him right after you get him to walk on after randomly stopping.

Note: We thought he did this because he was excited to go back to the barn, but he sometimes does it when leaving the barn.
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    06-17-2012, 11:10 PM
My mare does the same thing. She just doesn't like going on trails. Especially new ones.

I doubt anything's wrong with him, although depending on your area, I would agree with bad eyes
I'm in NE PA so the horses are low on vitamin E because of our grass and hay.
    06-17-2012, 11:12 PM
I would first have him checked by a vet. It may be a nerological disorder ( Onset of EPM) I would rule out any possible health issues and then look at the training part.

Good luck

    06-17-2012, 11:13 PM
Wow, misssed half the post.
We have a 10 yo paint mare that gets scared going from dark to light and vice versa
    06-17-2012, 11:49 PM
Green Broke
Are you sure there really aren't actual things the horse is scared of on the trail? Even small things? For instance, my mare does much of the same (stops, stares, sometimes spooks in place, snorts, etc.) and about 1/2 the time it is a result of an animal, such as an elk, deer, or even a small bird. Or a piece of something blowing in the wind. She is just sensitive like that. The other 1/2 the time I may not even figure out what is bothering her, I just push her on and keep riding.

She is just a sensitive horse to stimuli, especially when riding alone. As she was used as a broodmare I sometimes wonder how much riding experience she actually has. But as long as I can push her forward and she doesn't do any major spooks, I just ride it out. She gets better the more I ride her. If I let her sit for a while, she is sensitive and spooky all over again.

I would check with a vet just to rule out eyesight problems- that is a good idea. That would be a reason for a horse to see boogers in every bush as well. Can't comment on the neurologic stuff as I have no experience with it.

PS. I also used to own a Paint that would stop and tremble when he encountered elk. I couldn't always see or hear them myself, but I knew they were there because of his reaction to them.

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