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post #41 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 10:02 AM
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I was riding with a group in the mountains on some steep rocky trails.
Now whenever he gets 'left behind' he will get feisty, Then don't get left behind - keep up with the group

but I usually just let him gait? up to them like normal.by doing this, you are winding up the horses of your friends

If he gets out of control I will just spin him in a circle and carry on like normal.that shows aggression towards the horse and he will pick up that you are angry.
It would have been better for you to keep him under control from the very beginning.
Do you ride Sunny on a long loose rein???

It sounds as though this horse needs to be ridden collected - ie you keep him under control by shortening your reins and keeping his head down. He can't run off if he does not have full control over his head and neck.
If you ride him long and low then he has control over you and it should be the other way round.

However, it is very difficult to spin a horse on a steeeeeep rocky trail going downhill who is notorious for tripping and FALLING.
Then again, are you restricting the length of stride. Hold him back and make him take shorter steps. Direct him with your seat, your thighs, your legs.

Practice in the arena with poles laid on the ground - make him adjust his length of pace
and work on your being able to determine the length of his stride.
Then when he and you are ready take him out, with one mounted friend,find a length of path with a steep slope (not too steep) and practice going up and down hills. You,ve got to get the length of rein you allow him correct - not enough to give him his head, not too little to negotiate the
steep path. Walk him down that path with your bodyand your feet working the stirrups.

So he started to get that feeling of no return (the peak of his gait right before a canter.
(not sure I understand this???)

Once we get there, it is almost impossible to manually stop him). I ended up hauling on his mouth with all my strength, extremely off-balance, and he goes running down the rock trail with his head a-flailing doing everything he can to get away from the bit, tripping all the way.
The horse is panicking - your fault - you lost control. You probably gave him too much rein and by the sound of it you might need a slightly stronger bit but there again that might work against you.
Were you shouting at this point???? You must keep calm - otherwise the horse will panic.

It's amazing I'm still alive. Literally. No joke. YES, you could have come off and you are lucky you did not. Your horse might have run off. You certainly at this point were upsetting the horses of your fellow riders.

I'd tried the crossover (pull on one rein and cross the other on the neck to act like a pulley until you get the horse's attention), short snatches, saying 'easy' which is his usual que, but he is too herdbound.
The horse had the fever which many horses get when they are in a group. He was frightened - he knew you had lost control.
You were also frightened and you were transmitting that fear (and excitement) to him. He was at this point a "runaway".

He listens to me only when he is alone. Not with other horses.
Partly that is because you don't go near steep stoney paths, I guess.

Eventually I just held my breath, prayed I didn't go flying off the mountain, and spun him.
You spun him!. Yes turning him back is the way to slow him - but you need to be taught how to disengage the hind quarters. Ask and read. You won't need to spin him right round - just to a 45 degree angle to left or right. What you are doing by spinning is to teach him how to whirl on his hind quarters - if he does it on a hard surface on a hill, then he will take off and you'll come off.

He almost fell a few times, but we managed.
Then he is more sure footed than you give him credit for. But my guess was that you were helping him more than you were at the beginning.


Not because I gained control but because the group stopped and waited for us.
Good, you have some friends.

I've tried simply everything.
No, but you are realizing that you have a problem of control and are asking for help.

-re-training (work) in ring
You need some training out on the trail - the ring does not put the horse in a scenario where he will get excited.
-new bit (pelham, snaffle, C curb)
If you increase the bit strength, then you may get a horse that rears as well as rebels. You must be careful not to hurt the horse when it is under stress.

-MORE work in ring
Folks like me, writing over the Internet can't really do much to help you. All we can do is to read your words and try to point you in the right direction.
By the sound of it, your horse needs to be ridden collected - you must at times ride the horse on a shorter rein to hold him back.
If this means more work in the ring under the close eyes of an instructor then so be it.
Get a book, dial up google and write "collected" " "on the bit"
Then ask one of your friends who rides English. Then ask your tutor to teach you how to do it.

The test you are aiming for is to ride around the arena at the canter and to do it in the slowest time you can, without dropping back into jog (or trot). It is one of the "Le Trec" tests.

Your fundamental problem seems to be that you can't slow your horse down and keep it slowed down. Pulling back on the bit is not the only answer. You must learn to use your seat and thighs as well.

-It is plain UN-SAFE to ride an out-of-control horse on the trail.Agreed Not just for you but also your friends riding with you on the trail

That's all I use him for: Trail riding. So what's the point of owning an-out-of-control-horse who can't handle himself on the trail?. Well you are the boss - you have got to teach him how to handle himself on the trail.

Should I just.... (and it pains me to say) Sell him? Do you really want a brain dead horse instead of this spunky little devil?
Anyway - you'll have the same problem with the next horse until you learn.

Everything about him is perfect.
That is why you bought him in the first place.

-size (16 hands of muscle)
-temperment (silly, retard, high most of the time)
Perhaps he is "high" by nature. What do you feed him? Try some calming herbs and check magnesium levels in the soil - he may be short of magnesium which helps to hype him up.

except?

HERD BOUND issue!
When you go out to a club with your friends - do you get hyper when you are enjoying yourself?? Of course you do.
Your horse is out with his mates, he gets hyper, then he gets excited , then he gets frightened. You should know how he feels.


If you really want this horse for trail riding, then you have to face the issue that you yourself need some training as how to keep him under control. Ring work is important but by the sound of it, you need some training out on the trail. What you need to find is some bow legged old cowboy (Tom Dorrance), who will show you what you are doing wrong.

By the sound of it,
you have a good seat (you did not fall off)
You have got spirit (you did not give up)
You asked for help (the first stage of rehabilitation)
You've got a forward going spunky little horse which you quite like.

You did not get hurt - (You were lucky that time - but you might get hurt next time!!!!)

-What do cavisons do? - look it up on the Internet - do a google - cavessons.

Do they help keep the mouth shut, NO

Would a trainer be able to help buddy-sourness? You will never cure a horse of buddy sourness - although it might grow out of it as it gets older
Or is that a horse/natural thing? yes

And by the way, I was riding him in his pelham. He seems for the most part to do very well with it. But all fails when he is herdbound. He even won't listen to his curb. So I don't think it is a bit problem. NO and probably you have got enough brakes to do the job - but the brakes are only half the answer. You have to get mental control over your horse.

I'm kind of... Desperate No , you just need help - desperately


Barry G

Last edited by xxBarry Godden; 10-13-2009 at 10:06 AM.
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post #42 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 10:04 AM
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Help Help Help contd

I'm willing to try most everything I can or that's in my price-range. |Money won't solve your problem - knowledge will.
I know gadgets aren't necessarily the answer, but I'd like to try that before spending money on a trainer. Expensive
Sounds to me that you need the right trainer - not just a trainer. Make sure you tell the trainer what your problem is and see if you can get him or her to go over that same path - with them on an accompanying horse.
Talk with your friends who probably know you have a problem already. Ask them to help you.
Help. Help. Help.
I've done the best I can for you. I know the best place for you to learn the necessary skills but sorry, it is in the mountains of Wales.
It might be an idea for you to go for a week to a trail riding centre. They have the skills to teach you.
I guess this should have gone in the training section,
Yes, it should have.


Nagging over. This is a common problem with riding centres that merely teach in the ring. The horse when it leaves the ring, and goes out onto the trail, especially when in company with other horses, catches what I call "hunt fever".
Bearing in mind you had a frightening experience and you survived, then you are doing well to try to learn why. I hope this response helps.
But, please, until you have started to understand what I have written, then please watch very carefully with whom you ride out - you need to ride for a bit with someone experienced who owns a calm horse. Try not to ride with any scatterbrained, loud exciteable riders who have exciteable horses. And don't fall off.
Barry G
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post #43 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 05:23 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Godden View Post
I was riding with a group in the mountains on some steep rocky trails.
Now whenever he gets 'left behind' he will get feisty, Then don't get left behind - keep up with the group


I shouldn't have to be afraid of my horse. He should do what I say always.


Quote:
Do you ride Sunny on a long loose rein???


As often as I can. However, when we are gaiting, cantering, or doing faster work, I keep him in a fairly collected head position.


Quote:
Practice in the arena with poles laid on the ground - make him adjust his length of pace
Quote:
and work on your being able to determine the length of his stride.
Then when he and you are ready take him out, with one mounted friend,find a length of path with a steep slope (not too steep) and practice going up and down hills. You,ve got to get the length of rein you allow him correct - not enough to give him his head, not too little to negotiate the
steep path. Walk him down that path with your bodyand your feet working the stirrups.


Ok, I will try that.

Quote:
So he started to get that feeling of no return (the peak of his gait right before a canter.
Quote:
(not sure I understand this???)


You'd know if you rode gaited horses!

Quote:
Once we get there, it is almost impossible to manually stop him). I ended up hauling on his mouth with all my strength, extremely off-balance, and he goes running down the rock trail with his head a-flailing doing everything he can to get away from the bit, tripping all the way.
Quote:
The horse is panicking - your fault - you lost control. You probably gave him too much rein and by the sound of it you might need a slightly stronger bit but there again that might work against you.
Were you shouting at this point???? You must keep calm - otherwise the horse will panic.


At this point, yes. However, this has happened before. The only reason he'd be panicking is solely the reason he is seperated from his friends.

Quote:
It's amazing I'm still alive.
Quote:
Literally. No joke.
Quote:
YES, you could have come off and you are lucky you did not. Your horse might have run off. You certainly at this point were upsetting the horses of your fellow riders.


Are you kidding?! They were long gone!


Quote:
He listens to me only when he is alone. Not with other horses.
Partly that is because you don't go near steep stoney paths, I guess.


What?

Quote:
I've tried simply everything.
Quote:

No, but you are realizing that you have a problem of control and are asking for help.


Of course! I don't want a runaway horse!

Quote:
-re-training (work) in ring
Quote:
You need some training out on the trail - the ring does not put the horse in a scenario where he will get excited.


I didn't think so either. However, that is what EVERYBODY had been telling me to do.

Quote:
The test you are aiming for is to ride around the arena at the canter and to do it in the slowest time you can, without dropping back into jog (or trot). It is one of the "Le Trec"
Quote:
tests.


You are absolutely positively right. I can't believe I never thought to work on his canter.. He HAS begun to canter really fast lately. I will definetely try that and continue to work on it.

Quote:
Your fundamental problem seems to be that you can't slow your horse down and keep it slowed down. Pulling back on the bit is not the only answer. You must learn to use your seat and thighs as well.


How? Can a horse feel you through a western/Aussie saddle?


Quote:
Should I just.... (and it pains me to say) Sell him? Do you really want a brain dead horse instead of this spunky little devil?
Anyway - you'll have the same problem with the next horse until you learn.


You are absolutely right!


Quote:
-size (16 hands of muscle)
-temperment (silly, retard, high most of the time)
Perhaps he is "high" by nature. What do you feed him? Try some calming herbs and check magnesium levels in the soil - he may be short of magnesium which helps to hype him up.


1 pound of whole oats each morning/night. Nothing in them. He is a very easy keeper. Hay- about 2 flakes. Bermuda I believe.


Quote:
HERD BOUND issue!
When you go out to a club with your friends - do you get hyper when you are enjoying yourself?? Of course you do.
Your horse is out with his mates, he gets hyper, then he gets excited , then he gets frightened. You should know how he feels.


I guess I never really thought to think that just standing next to his friend would be so rewarding, but I guess in a horse's mind, it IS! Hmm.. Gives a whole new thought.


Quote:
By the sound of it,
Quote:
you have a good seat (you did not fall off)
You have got spirit (you did not give up)
You asked for help (the first stage of rehabilitation)
You've got a forward going spunky little horse which you quite like.

You did not get hurt - (You were lucky that time - but you might get hurt next time!!!!)


Ha, ha. Thank you very much! I get a little credit!

Quote:
-What do cavisons do? -
Quote:
look it up on the Internet - do a google - cavessons.


Yeah.. I just wanted to know you guys' thoughts. Google is not always a reliable source.

So.. Is this seriously a trainer thing, or can I afterall fix it myself? Should I work in his feet and gait speeds first and work my way up?

Thanks for the great info, BG. You need to write a book ;)
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post #44 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 05:25 PM Thread Starter
 
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I might try riding by myself for the time being ;)
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post #45 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunny06 View Post
[/color]

I shouldn't have to be afraid of my horse. He should do what I say always.



This is all about the training. If you're letting him get away with stuff, of course he's going to get spoiled. If you think he should do what you say always, you have to be on top of him always.
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post #46 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 06:35 PM
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Quote:
I shouldn't have to be afraid of my horse. He should do what I say always.
^ If that is what you want, that if fine. But putting him in a situation that is sure to fail, is not helping, in fact it is making it worse. You should not allow you and Sunny to be left behind until you have the tools to SUCESSFULLY handle the situation. Everytime he panics and runs back to his friends, eh wins, and learns that it works.

Quote:
How? Can a horse feel you through a western/Aussie saddle?
*shock* Of course he can. A saddle is MADE to allow communication between horse and rider. On the trail, your seat and legs are the single most important tool of control you have. Reains only give you control of the head; The body can do virtually anything without the cooperation of the head, as you have foudn out. I think this may be your main problem - You need to find a trainer who can teach you how to effectively use your seat to calm and slow him down and your legs to direct his body.

Quote:
1 pound of whole oats each morning/night. Nothing in them. He is a very easy keeper. Hay- about 2 flakes. Bermuda I believe.
If he is an easy keeper and 'hyper' then take him OFF the grain. He doesn't need it. If you feel the need to still feed a hard feed, try something high in digestable energy but low in NSC's and excess energy, such as Beet-Pulp, Copra, Micronised Lupins, etc.

How often is he turned out?

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post #47 of 58 Old 10-13-2009, 08:23 PM
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WS, I completely agree with you.

I would like to add that a horse can feel a FLY - they can feel you turning your head, they can feel your slight movements. Riding should come from your seat and legs first, not your hands.
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post #48 of 58 Old 10-14-2009, 04:55 AM
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Sonny

I asked you what he was fed - you reply "whole oats".
Now we Brits regard whole oats to be an energy food - and by the sound of it the last thing your fellow needs is an energy boost. I would cut out the oats and give a low energy pasture mix instead - that is something to make sure he has all the vitamins and minerals but nothing to boost the energy. Oats make horses excited.

I leave my horse out on grass but I watch the energy intake during the grass growing season, - during the winter she gets hay and a handful of pasture mix plus an apple or two and a carrot or two. I measure her belly every week to keep the weight off her.
I would talk with your horse feed supplier - but make sure you get to talk with a nutritionist and not the sales clerk. Read the instructions on the bag.

Riding collected.
The fundamental reason for keeping contact with a horses mouth thru the bit whilst hacking out is to keep control at all times. If you have a permanent contact with the horses mouth then you can "feel" when the horse is getting ready to run off and you have a chance to stop him - whereas if he already has his head thru long reins, then he can take off before you have had chance to shorten the reins. Then first you have to take the reins back from the horse.
He can't run if he can't stretch his neck. Most lighter horses won't even turn unless they can turn their necks.

If you are using a pelham bit then you must ride with a light contact and you must learn to follow the horse's head movement so as to maintain only a light contact at all times. In time you'll learn to do it with your fingers

If you were riding with english tack then you might need some help with a martingale - that is a strap which restricts the up and down movement of the horse's head. Look up running martingale in "wikipedia".
But I have never seen one on a western horse.

You can use weight and pressure thru a western saddle
but one day ride a horse fitted with an English saddle.
You'll understand then why we ride english - the lighter saddle allows more "feel".

Careful with fiercer bits on a spirited horse. You'll ruin the sensitivity of the horse's mouth and he may decide to fight you anyway.

Sonny, you have got to get control of that horse's brain
- you have to keep him away from exciting situations until you feel you have more control.
At the end of the day you can only ask a horse to do something - unless you want to hurt him. You physically cannot stop him. The horse must listen to the instruction and obey the instruction.
Personally I don't believe you can beat a spirited horse into obedience, you have to persuade him that it is in his interest to obey you - his mistress.

Be careful with this horse - when he is excited he might hurt you. He won't mean to - he will just be excited and exhuberant and he won't be listening to you. So you have to make him listen AT ALL TIMES. The listening is a must - you must never ever lose control. He is not carrying you, you are riding him.

I have written some other threads on bolting, and riding english - other folks have come in and posted comments in those threads. Look them up in Horse Forum under horse training and english riding.

Lesson over,
Be lucky
Barry G
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post #49 of 58 Old 10-14-2009, 08:00 AM
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Well said, Barry!

Sunny, as for straight oats... I posted similar question in "Health" section. I used to feed my horses half pound straight oats/half pound pellets twice/day and they were running bananans in morning. After the discussion here I decided to give a shot and switched them to Buckey's Safe'n'Easy (no molassas, no corn, little grain, mostly beet pulp pellets). I can tell the difference. Well, my paint still gets overexcited about the ride to the park (I can do nothing about it - just too much adrenaline I suppose), but overall I think they are calmer.



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post #50 of 58 Old 10-14-2009, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustDressageIt View Post
This is all about the training. If you're letting him get away with stuff, of course he's going to get spoiled. If you think he should do what you say always, you have to be on top of him always.
I would if I knew how to! I know now, but it's too late. I'll work on it now, but I have no clue how he's going to respond.
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