Hackney Pony Problems - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 04-28-2015, 07:32 PM Thread Starter
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Smile Hackney Pony Problems

Hello all! I am new here and happy to be a part of this. I just bought a hackney pony for my daughter. The ponies name is Royal and she is about 12 hands high. When we got her, she was pretty well behaved and rode well. She is being housed with another horse of ours who is much bigger and older. Our older horse loves her but gives her a lot of crap too. She likes to chase Royal and bite her butt a lot, especially during feeding time. I don't know if this is the reason, but our pony has really started misbehaving lately. She runs from us, wont let us brush her, wont let us clean her feet, and we can hardly saddle her once we finally do catch her. All of these issues just starting arriving, before this we could do anything with her. She has always been a tad jumpy and loves to move all over when we use to brush and saddle her. I am far from a horse trainer but I have done some research to help me fix her but nothing is working. I don't believe in giving up on her so I hope to find some friends on here to help me out! Thanks in advance.

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post #2 of 8 Old 06-09-2015, 07:56 PM
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Do not give up on her. The reality is, horses boss horses around. She may look pretty and showy but at the end of a day she is a horse and will be a horse. It is completely normal for horses to bite and kick and be what seems to us like meanies to other horses, but that is just horse language. That's the way it is. Now with this behaviour problem, you must consider that horses are prey animals and we are predators. In order to live together, we must give the horse trust and in return the horse will give us respect. My theory is your horse lacks trust. If she is running away, perhaps you are acting predatory and not meaning to. Are you walking directly at her? Because that's what lions do. Try approaching her by walking slightly to her left, slowly. And don't bring tack, bring a carrot or apple. Give her release by stopping once or twice, them approach her at her side, and start scratching or rubbing her shoulder (and give her the treat). This is how horses greet each other. To get this pony round, you have to almost become a horse. That's just simply learning how to understand horse language, and not force them into doing anything without listening to what they have to say. Focus on approaching her in the paddock like this. Just friendly. Don't walk towards her purposefully with a halter in your hand, because the horse just feels like you don't acknowledge her and just want to ride her, not to bond and spend time with her. After a while you can then introduce a halter and I suggest a rope halter because with them you can communicate properly. And then slowly start putting it on, then taking it off. Once shes completely fine, you can then practice just leading her around the paddock and eventually out of the paddock. It all takes time. And try not to feel frustration or anger as your horse can sense this and you will frighten her. Just relax, be calm, laugh at your mistakes and try again. I suggest reading up about horse language and even natural horsemanship. You will learn a lot of valuable skills with communicating with horses a good way
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post #3 of 8 Old 06-09-2015, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
In order to live together, we must give the horse trust and in return the horse will give us respect. My theory is your horse lacks trust.
You are not being clear. You say you need to give the horse trust, and they will give respect? In the next sentence, however, you say she lacks trust, the thing you give. Personally, I think it is mostly respect and training.
Quote:
If she is running away, perhaps you are acting predatory and not meaning to. Are you walking directly at her? Because that's what lions do.
Actually lions stalk their prey, not just simply walk straight to.
Quote:
Try approaching her by walking slightly to her left, slowly. And don't bring tack, bring a carrot or apple. Give her release by stopping once or twice, them approach her at her side, and start scratching or rubbing her shoulder (and give her the treat). This is how horses greet each other.
No. A lower horse will lower is head in submission and walk slowly; high horse will walk straight in.
Quote:
To get this pony round, you have to almost become a horse. That's just simply learning how to understand horse language, and not force them into doing anything without listening to what they have to say.
No. I am a human and she is a horse. A horse should be treated as such . Yes, you should learn horse behavior, but if I listened to every little "No! no! no!" my horse gave me, I would be moving slower than turtle.
Quote:
Focus on approaching her in the paddock like this. Just friendly. Don't walk towards her purposefully with a halter in your hand, because the horse just feels like you don't acknowledge her and just want to ride her, not to bond and spend time with her.
If she could be ridden, groomed, etc., the problem isn't with trust and bond; it is with the training.

Be confident, straight-forward, and firm, but be kind and fair. I suggest finding a trainer willing to go the distance or sell her. It is very dangerous for you and your young daughter for her to be acting like a disrespectful fool.

Horses are like sand.
You let them crumble away or you can build them up into something beautiful.
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post #4 of 8 Old 06-09-2015, 08:36 PM
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Hackneys are not really a child's pony. They are VERY high energy and usually pulling a cart stepping high and flyin bye. So if it isn't getting enough excersise that could give it behavior problems
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post #5 of 8 Old 06-09-2015, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
So if it isn't getting enough excersise that could give it behavior problems
Yes. Also, check her feed. An energetic pony doesn't need to be eating "energy pellets".
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Horses are like sand.
You let them crumble away or you can build them up into something beautiful.
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post #6 of 8 Old 06-10-2015, 11:52 PM
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Hi,

Don't want to assume, but it sounds like you're not all that experienced with horses OP? Wonder, how old and experienced is your daughter too? Imagine she can't be that old, for a fine pony that size. Is this to be a leadrein pony, or...? I'd be definitely looking for a trainer that can help you with the horse, teach you to handle her effectively.

She may have been well trained & handled in the past, so stuck to her 'programming' when she first came to you, but now she's settled in a bit, got to know you a bit, she has realised she can 'call the shots' for things she doesn't want to do. She is not 'misbehaving' at all, just learning what is the most worthwhile behaviour to do/not do around you!

Such as running away from you instead of coming when called in the paddock. Apart from the point that she'd obviously rather be hanging out with her mate in the pasture, it's nothing to do with your other mare. If she doesn't want to come to you, you need to look at what you're doing that's DIScouraging her to come. Are you catching & working her, or doing 'stuff' to her that she doesn't like, like brushing? Or does she get a treat &/or a nice scratch when she comes to you in the paddock, or lets you catch her? Horses do what works & quit doing what doesn't work, or is unpleasant for them. So just make sure coming when called(& other behaviours you desire from her) has pleasant consequences.

All the issues you describe could be purely 'attitude' & 'training', and she could be generally 'jumpy' because of the 'sassy' type of pony she is, but I'd also seriously consider physical issues. Jumpiness & sensitivity to brushing could be due to thin skin, or could be nutritional. For eg. magnesium deficiency is extremely common, and can cause a 'tightness', mentally and physically. Also wouldn't be unusual if the saddle is hurting her. So I'd want to rule out/treat any physical issues before focussing on training too much.
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post #7 of 8 Old 06-11-2015, 06:30 AM
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Whimsy.. im sorry you didn't agree with everything I said, ill just refine it. "In order to live together we must give the horse trust..." as in our horses need to be able to trust in us in order to "give us respect." We stepped into their life, and if we are the ones telling them what to do, then they need to be able agree with it. We cant just go on ahead without their trust. They want to feel safe, and if they are showing to be "disrespectful" by moving around, not wanting to be caught, they do not feel safe, because a horse that feels safe is a calm horse. So im saying that maybe this horse doesn't have enough trust in the lady and thus wont give her respect by standing there as she comes up, or standing still whilst interacting with her. Trust comes first! With trust comes respect.

Yes lions stalk their prey, but if they think they are not visible they will stand taller in order to silently trot, or walk faster up to their prey. Its all the same, whatever the pace, its direct. Then they run directly. Im not saying we are doing that, that to a horse we are lions, but I am saying that to a horse we are a predator. We have our eyes fixated on the front of our face like most predators because it helps "us" pin point our prey. Horses are not stupid, they can see we are not horses, they know we are predators. They have every right to be cautious around us. A human walking directly towards a horse is quite different to a horse walking directly towards another horse. That's why humans should consider release

Approaching her from her side is not showing submission or weakness. It allows the horse to relax. Naturally a horse becomes anxious and sometimes even frightened if you walk towards them so purposefully, because they feel like they are being pin pointed. To them it doesn't look like an alpha horse, it looks like a human!
Slowly doesn't have to be the pace of a snail, slowly can just mean a relaxed and steady pace, and the horse will sense your calmness and be at ease. They will have no need to be anxious. My dad used to always have problems with catching horses, and it was because he was always walking directly towards them. So he then tried approaching from the side, and it worked! It is something he taught me. Sometimes my horses even groom me back when I greet them with a big scratch on the shoulder, and that's not dominance or submission that's just general bonding.

You don't have to listen to your horse saying "no", if you ask the question with good leadership (no aggressive bossy wossy business) then he will give you the answer. A positive answer. Giving with positive, you will always be returned with positive, and visa versa with negativity.

I don't mean becoming a horse literally, of course you are a human! But we cant just leave it up to the horse to figure out our language and that's it, it doesn't work like that. They wont be humans they will be horses and they will just do what horses do. If a human is able to think like a horse and put themselves in the horses point of view, to understand a horse and not only receive but give answers, then it just makes everything so much easier to harness trust. To a horse, a human understanding them and then returning information that the horse understands is unbelievable. They really enjoy it when they feel like they are understood, because usually they probably feel like they aren't. We are the ones who have to mould into the horse, the horse is not the one who has to mould into us and our ways.
I'm not trying to start an argument Im just trying to get you to understand what im saying. I probably didn't cover it probably as to try and not make my post too big.

Take a look at this website, and this fantastic horseman who knows horses inside out. Im not able to mention his name as horseforum wont let me because apparently it "has resulted in conflict among horse forum members", because people sometimes get really ****ed off at the things he says. Why? Because he lays out the truth in black and blue, and challenges people.

** removed unapproved link **

He goes into more depth about the kindof things im saying.

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post #8 of 8 Old 11-27-2015, 02:07 PM
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This thread really is old, I wonder if the problem has been fixed already... If it hasn't: I would definitely be selling the horse. It may depend on what you really want to do with the Hackney pony, if it's a general riding horse, it's safer and better to sell this one and buy another (may want to try another breed, like a Riding Pony). If you're aiming to do something competitive with the horse, then you would need more research on what the breed is best used for. It's best to match a horse with a handler/rider compatible with him/her. It's not always about training, training can make a horse obey handlers/riders they do not feel compatible with; but it's not guaranteed (I don't know if this makes sense to you, I am not sure of how to put this in words).

Quote:
Originally Posted by MinnieJilian View Post
Whimsy.. im sorry you didn't agree with everything I said, ill just refine it. "In order to live together we must give the horse trust..." as in our horses need to be able to trust in us in order to "give us respect." We stepped into their life, and if we are the ones telling them what to do, then they need to be able agree with it. We cant just go on ahead without their trust. They want to feel safe, and if they are showing to be "disrespectful" by moving around, not wanting to be caught, they do not feel safe, because a horse that feels safe is a calm horse. So im saying that maybe this horse doesn't have enough trust in the lady and thus wont give her respect by standing there as she comes up, or standing still whilst interacting with her. Trust comes first! With trust comes respect.

Yes lions stalk their prey, but if they think they are not visible they will stand taller in order to silently trot, or walk faster up to their prey. Its all the same, whatever the pace, its direct. Then they run directly. Im not saying we are doing that, that to a horse we are lions, but I am saying that to a horse we are a predator. We have our eyes fixated on the front of our face like most predators because it helps "us" pin point our prey. Horses are not stupid, they can see we are not horses, they know we are predators. They have every right to be cautious around us. A human walking directly towards a horse is quite different to a horse walking directly towards another horse. That's why humans should consider release

Approaching her from her side is not showing submission or weakness. It allows the horse to relax. Naturally a horse becomes anxious and sometimes even frightened if you walk towards them so purposefully, because they feel like they are being pin pointed. To them it doesn't look like an alpha horse, it looks like a human!
Slowly doesn't have to be the pace of a snail, slowly can just mean a relaxed and steady pace, and the horse will sense your calmness and be at ease. They will have no need to be anxious. My dad used to always have problems with catching horses, and it was because he was always walking directly towards them. So he then tried approaching from the side, and it worked! It is something he taught me. Sometimes my horses even groom me back when I greet them with a big scratch on the shoulder, and that's not dominance or submission that's just general bonding.

You don't have to listen to your horse saying "no", if you ask the question with good leadership (no aggressive bossy wossy business) then he will give you the answer. A positive answer. Giving with positive, you will always be returned with positive, and visa versa with negativity.

I don't mean becoming a horse literally, of course you are a human! But we cant just leave it up to the horse to figure out our language and that's it, it doesn't work like that. They wont be humans they will be horses and they will just do what horses do. If a human is able to think like a horse and put themselves in the horses point of view, to understand a horse and not only receive but give answers, then it just makes everything so much easier to harness trust. To a horse, a human understanding them and then returning information that the horse understands is unbelievable. They really enjoy it when they feel like they are understood, because usually they probably feel like they aren't. We are the ones who have to mould into the horse, the horse is not the one who has to mould into us and our ways.
I'm not trying to start an argument Im just trying to get you to understand what im saying. I probably didn't cover it probably as to try and not make my post too big...
To be honest, I agree more with Whimsy than with you.

Horses know we are humans, we can imitate a horse to a certain extent but we cannot "be a horse" because it's simply not possible. Trying to be what you're not makes you inauthentic and some horses pick it up and show signs of mistrust.

There's one thing I've learnt from my experience with horses, there is "compatibility". Most horses developed preferences of riders/handlers, some liked me, some did not. Horses are individuals with their own personalities and preferences, they are highly intelligent too. I myself would rather sell a horse who is incompatible with me than try to fix him/her. It's easier for everyone, cuts cost and effort.

Peace
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