Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: middle of nowhere
I'd ride this mare with an over-under on the saddle and wearing spurs, and when she lays her ears back or tries this little trick, she's going to get spanked hard across the hindquarters and spurred until she moves forward and realizes that kicking is not something she wants to be doing. This is a dangerous habit, and it needs to stop, and you will not stop it without getting after her, and hard. She needs to realize that what she's doing is NEVER ok before she seriously injures someone or another horse. Her behavior is not that rare, and a good rider/trainer should be easily able to get her out of it. That person needs to be a good rider with good timing, though. She needs to be disciplined immediately when she even thinks of trying it, and it needs to be followed through on, even if she rears or bucks trying to get her way. This is generally a fast fix, but horses like this tend to revert to the same behavior when they can get away with it--- a novice or timid rider, or someone not paying attention. She's gotten away with this for most of her life, it seems, so it's going to be harder to fix than if her rider had fixed it when she was started under saddle. The key is also to recognize when she is going to do it, and correcting her before she actually does. You can usually feel the horse tense up, the head lift, and the ear come back when she's mad a horse is behind her before she bares her teeth, squeals, or kicks. That's when you get after her. If she's already into her kicking by the time you correct, you're too late and then you have to keep on correcting until she stops and be prepared for a rodeo. This may get worse before it gets better. Have an experienced rider or trainer work with her on this-- you need someone who knows what they're doing on the mare, and also on the horse that you're using to 'set her up' so nobody is hurt in the melee.
This is one of those rare instances when a hard correction is justified. A big Hancock mare will challenge her rider on this since she's gotten away with it, and the rider needs to be able to win, and keep emotion out of it. Correct her, and hard, until she stops, then relax and continue on as if nothing happened. Don't make a big deal of it but do not allow this to continue, and it will soon be a thing of the past.
Last edited by SilverMaple; 08-07-2019 at 04:57 PM.