teaching alone trail riding - Page 2 - The Horse Forum

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post #11 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 06:39 PM
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Haha! Well I fell off one of mine walking back to the barn from the arena-I had dropped my stirrups (which usually makes my guys stop in their tracks), walking loose reins......and he spooked at an electrical box had been there the entire time he had. He had seen EVERY SINGLE ride. Turd.
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post #12 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beachluvr View Post
When your horse is doing all that do you encourage a trot or just walk it through. I would like to encourage the trot, thinking she would concentrate more.
Depends on the situation. If she's acting like she wants to run, she has to walk. But if she's lacking forward energy a trot can help.
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post #13 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 08:09 PM
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"Interesting she is not as "afraid" when heading towards home?

Who is training who, here? Sounds like this horse has your number.

Don't force the issue to the point you can not handle it, but when you head for home and her fears disappear, turn her around and insist she go forward free and easy. Spurs, bat, hickory stick, whatever it takes.
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post #14 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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frank and beans too funny!! We were gaiting solo down one of our "safe" roads and yesterday someone dumped a load of dirt next to the road to fill the pot holes. Well you would have thought the world was coming to an end!!
She is great on the trails following horses...refuses to lead. She is 5 so I am just going to keep going solo and when in a group try to get her to edge forward. I am enjoying the "process' but sometimes I want to jump to when she is 10! I ride about 3-5 times a week. She is great in the outdoor areana and round pen
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post #15 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 08:49 PM
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toto hit the first thing on the head....the horse needs to focus on you and not everything else. You MUST be the boss/leader/etc..... and they have to stay alert to you and the directions you give. Easy to say , but it can take work to reach that state.
The horse needs to trust and rely on you to determine what is a danger. They need to accept that you (not them) determine what is dangerous. If they are focusing on you they won't be looking around to see what might be scary to them. If you let them examine everything to see if they want to risk it then they are subject to spook at anything and you're empowering them to do so.

As for being great at returning home. I've never met a horse that wasn't happy, even eager to return home. Old rule of thumb....never let a horse run or trot back home. Once that habbit is started it's work to break them of it.

You can ride a horse 3 days out from home and they'll still know the way home. They'll be eager when they feel you're heading back
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post #16 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 09:13 PM
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If you are a confident, bold rider, then I would push her through just as Toto says.

My well-seasoned trail horse is also just fine on all new trails, but as already posted, if a branch moved on the trail behind the barn, she will snort at it. Too bad for her, I don't let her sniff it or acknowledge her little spiff at all. I just keep walking, or trotting as the case may be.

I also disagree with never trotting or running your horse home. The reason that many horse want to run home is because they figure when they get there, the work is done, they'll get groomed, fed and pampered. When we get home from a ride, it's not over until I feel like its over. It might be the end of the ride right away. Or we might head out again. We might do some flat work in the yard (limited yard). I might stand in the driveway and chat to someone for 1/2 hour. I might take off the reins, put hobbles on her and work in the yard, then hop on again for a short ride. Any number of different situations. So my horse knows that coming home doesn't mean anything except it's another spot on the ride. It's also barrels of fun to come cantering into the driveway when the kids are in the yard chatting to a friend!
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post #17 of 82 Old 04-18-2013, 11:22 PM
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I'm pretty well convinced that Mia likes being scared. I don't think there is a chance in hell she'll ever stroll down a trail, relaxed and smoking a cigarette. She likes taking the lead, but she is hyper-alert. And we do plenty of OMG Crouches.

I honestly think she gets bored, and invents something to be scared of. She does fine when she is busy, but give her a stretch of easy trail to stroll down...she'll find something to startle at. But she hasn't bolted in a long time, and that is good enough for me. If I really want a push-button horse, I need to go buy one. Until then...
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post #18 of 82 Old 04-19-2013, 04:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by its lbs not miles View Post
toto hit the first thing on the head....the horse needs to focus on you and not everything else. You MUST be the boss/leader/etc..... and they have to stay alert to you and the directions you give. Easy to say , but it can take work to reach that state.
The horse needs to trust and rely on you to determine what is a danger. They need to accept that you (not them) determine what is dangerous. If they are focusing on you they won't be looking around to see what might be scary to them. If you let them examine everything to see if they want to risk it then they are subject to spook at anything and you're empowering them to do so.

As for being great at returning home. I've never met a horse that wasn't happy, even eager to return home. Old rule of thumb....never let a horse run or trot back home. Once that habbit is started it's work to break them of it.

You can ride a horse 3 days out from home and they'll still know the way home. They'll be eager when they feel you're heading back
See-here is the problem I have with that, and why I pay attention to what my horses are telling me. NOTE: I am not saying that most of the time we do what they think is safe, but I do at least pay attention to them when they are afraid, and, this has come with years of knowing them on the trails and when they are acting and when they are for real. Neither of which happens often.
I have known people, in fact, I think there have been cases posted here, where horses refused to go forward for some reason. Rider forced them, and there was something that was not safe, such as, I knew one who sank up to her chest in muck and got stuck.
I do give them some credence, as I recognize that their senses are much sharper than mine.
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post #19 of 82 Old 04-19-2013, 06:25 AM
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bsms:
sounds like your horse is a lot like mine!

franknbeans:
you bring up a really good point. This is part of the reason why I won't force a horse over an obstacle while they are examining it. Fortunately, the difference between genuine fear and play-spooking is usually pretty obvious!
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post #20 of 82 Old 04-19-2013, 06:34 AM
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Bella-it takes time to know a horse. If mine refuses to go over, under, around or through something they have seen 100 times-I get after them. But, I remember one time distinctly-I was out on a trail we went on ALL the time, just walking along. Ears went up, and my guy stopped. Refused to take another step. Really afraid of something. Next thing I knew I heard a gunshot. It was NOT hunting season, nor was this a hunting area. I will never know what it was, but I am glad he heard what I didn't, and we got home safely.
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