groundwork question - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 12-10-2015, 03:16 PM Thread Starter
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Red face groundwork question

I have an 12 yr old gelding who has been a lawn ornament for 5 yrs. (my fault. No excuses)
I am wanting to begin some groundwork to build up to riding but we are having some issues. I am in WV and there are no trainers unless you are in to english. I have asked for help but no one has been forthcoming so I am setting out on my own.
Does everyday stuff with him like feeding count as part of the groundwork? He can be pushy and aggressive around feed and has ran me up on the fence a time or two (He was after the other horse and I was in the way). How do I handle this? I will never sell him due to the meat guys buying them. He's just a fat little horse that I've fed well, kept his hoofs up, and loved on but now I want to ride. I assure you I deeply regret letting him get out of hand and I don't have any experience but I am willing to learn. any books i can read or videos? selling is NOT an option
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post #2 of 4 Old 12-10-2015, 03:48 PM
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post #3 of 4 Old 12-10-2015, 03:56 PM
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Anytime you interact with your horse you are training him. You can lay some fundamentals down even if you are just feeding him or brushing him. The important thing to let him know is that you are the boss!!! You need to assert yourself and let him know he needs to respect you; it is unacceptable for a horse to 'run you down' when you go to feed him. Using your voice as well as an aid (a lunge whip), you can quickly teach him that he needs to pay attention to you and show some respect. I think it's great that you want to move forward with this guy; laying some ground rules with him will help a lot when you actually start to work more with him and eventually start riding.

I have a lawn ornament myself (he can't be ridden due to lameness), and was terrible about pushing on me and being disrespectful. It only took a few short lessons with him to show him he can't walk all over me....and we definitely enjoy our time together much more now.

Best of luck!!
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post #4 of 4 Old 12-10-2015, 06:07 PM
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well, you've got a great point to start with; getting him to have enough respect for you that he will not be pushy at meal time. food aggression in horses is a mortal sin, IMO. can NOT be tolerated, at all.
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