Advice on getting horse to accept saddle - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 09:36 PM Thread Starter
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Advice on getting horse to accept saddle

Hello,
I have an 8 year old Appaloosa and I will say this, she is stubborn as a mule. I bought her about a month ago and once you get her saddled and on her, she rides pretty good. She does need some refresher lessons and ground work.

She wasn't ridden that much and when you want to make her work she thinks she is going to put her hoof down and say "no". Once in a while you go for a simple trail ride, just a calm walking gait and she then decides she has had enough and will stand there for over 10 minutes or more, refusing to move no matter what you do to try and get her to move.

She has a habit of puffing out when it comes to tightening the girth strap, so I just have to tighten a little walk her around and then re-adjust when it goes slack.

The problem I am having is that as soon as she sees the saddle or the pad, she refuses to stand still for it. She will trot away from me, go in circles, move away, anything to avoid it. I was wondering if anyone can tell me the right way to correct this without increasing her negative perspective she has with this issue. What should I do exactly when she does this so that I can show her what I expect her to do when I attempt this and what to do to discipline (hope that's the right expression) her when it happens? Thank you very much!
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post #2 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 09:42 PM
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First of all, does your saddle fit? She may be unhappy about being saddled because she knows it will hurt.

Also, does your cinch pinch her? That can be another thing.

While it could be behavioral and she simply needs to be taught some manners, it is wise to make sure she isn't hurting.
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post #3 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 09:52 PM Thread Starter
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Hi,
I have checked and the saddle fit is good. She has a wide red cotton girth strap. I make sure that it doesn't pinch her, but I do have to tighten it quite a bit. I walk her around and re-adjust about 2-3 different times, before the strap isn't so loose due to her puffing out.
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post #4 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 09:53 PM Thread Starter
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In my opinion, I feel that she sees the saddle as a sign that she is going to have to work or be made to do something she doesn't want to. She was out in a pasture for a few months not being ridden until I bought her.
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post #5 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 10:06 PM
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How experienced are you? How do you know the tack fits her? Also, how long have you owned her/has this always been an issue of hers?
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post #6 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 10:21 PM Thread Starter
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I am not experienced and am still learning, which is why I am posting on new to horses. I had a saddle fitter check to make sure she and the saddle were correct. I have had her for about a month and she started this issue about a week ago. I was given the advice on getting another horse due to her wanting to constantly get out and go down to my neighbors horses. She's back with fencing around the wood rails to insure she stays in, however, she doesn't want to accept the saddle now and would rather avoid it. Besides getting help on training and handling, I just wanted to see is there anything that I can personally do to correct this behavior of hers?
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post #7 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 10:41 PM
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Well. You have had her a month, but the issue just started a week ago

The mare is smart enough to exploit your I inexperience. 100 years ago when I was young and new to horses I had one or two that exploited my inexperience too.

If possible, I would get some hands on help so you can be shown how to deal with a smart, but disrespectful, mare.
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post #8 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 10:53 PM Thread Starter
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Sarah,
Thank you for your advice. I believe that is true, while I am not afraid of her, I am pretty sure she can sense my lack of confidence and experience to handle her properly. I am actually in the process of researching where I could take her to get a professional hand to step in. Here's hoping I can get not only her in check but myself as well.
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post #9 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 22wingzero View Post
Sarah,
Thank you for your advice. I believe that is true, while I am not afraid of her, I am pretty sure she can sense my lack of confidence and experience to handle her properly. I am actually in the process of researching where I could take her to get a professional hand to step in. Here's hoping I can get not only her in check but myself as well.
Great! Also see if you can find someone to come to you. Makes things easier for you and your mare.

If you are willing to post where you are from, a lot of members on here from all over the place. Could help in your search!

Keep us posted.
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post #10 of 13 Old 11-07-2015, 11:22 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Sarah,
Thanks again for your helpful advice. I am in Taylorsville, NC. Yeah, we both need some training. She really is a good mare, she is very calm and gentle, just needs help in the respect department. I will definitely keep you all posted on our progress. Thanks again!
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