How can I make my horse not food aggressive? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 30 Old 12-27-2015, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Question How can I make my horse not food aggressive?

He pins his ears back at any site of food, even if its not for him. He chases other horses away from the hay and he "fake lunges" at my mom when she is within 5 feet of him while hes eating. We don't touch him when hes eating because I respect that its his time, but I hate that he is so obsessive over his food.
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post #2 of 30 Old 12-27-2015, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by hannahnicole View Post
He chases other horses away from the hay and he "fake lunges" at my mom when she is within 5 feet of him while hes eating. We don't touch him when hes eating because I respect that its his time, but I hate that he is so obsessive over his food.
And THERE is your problem. He has learned that he can chase you off and that will ESCALATE from food aggression to just plain aggression!

You need to smack the crap out of him ANY time he shows ANY kind of aggression toward ANY human. He has to learn that that behavior will never be tolerated and his aggression results in PAIN for him.
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post #3 of 30 Old 12-27-2015, 11:09 PM
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I just watched a video about this today. Here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfFxYgY_5g0

There are a lot of other videos about it by other people on YouTube, too.
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post #4 of 30 Old 12-27-2015, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Alhefner View Post
And THERE is your problem. He has learned that he can chase you off and that will ESCALATE from food aggression to just plain aggression!

You need to smack the crap out of him ANY time he shows ANY kind of aggression toward ANY human. He has to learn that that behavior will never be tolerated and his aggression results in PAIN for him.
We don't walk away when he does that to us. We just stand there until he stops and then just keeps his ears back. Last time my mom flicked a horses nose for biting he lunged at her and trampled my mom breaking her arm and two ribs. I just want a way to do it without hurting him because of my fear of that. Although he is very sweet and docile towards me without food, it just looks bad on us that he acts like that with food. But tomorrow morning I will bring out his bucket and I'll have a crop in my hand. Thankyou for your reply! Have a nice day. :)
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post #5 of 30 Old 12-27-2015, 11:12 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Jan1975 View Post
I just watched a video about this today. Here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfFxYgY_5g0

There are a lot of other videos about it by other people on YouTube, too.
Thankyou for that! Have a nice day. :)
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post #6 of 30 Old 12-28-2015, 01:26 AM
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Originally Posted by hannahnicole View Post
We don't walk away when he does that to us. We just stand there until he stops and then just keeps his ears back.

And, he never has any consequences....


Last time my mom flicked a horses nose for biting he lunged at her and trampled my mom breaking her arm and two ribs.

I'm sort of reading into this a bit and making an assumption that your mom gave a sort of off hand slap to the nose... while that will work a lot of times with lots of horses, it didn't that time. She needed to "get big and mean" in a hurry instead. More about that lower down in this post...


I just want a way to do it without hurting him because of my fear of that.

Can you hit as hard as a horse can kick? You're trying to stop a situation from happening that, if left alone and not corrected, could easily escalate to be life threatening.


Although he is very sweet and docile towards me without food, it just looks bad on us that he acts like that with food.

If he is allowed to continue getting away with the food aggression, then it will most likely escalate.

But tomorrow morning I will bring out his bucket and I'll have a crop in my hand.

Be ready to use it! Not just a little bit either.

Thankyou for your reply! Have a nice day. :)
In my opinion, I think this is where you're headed as things stand now:
https://youtu.be/vZRLA7Ivh7Q

So, I stated that I would have more on getting "big and mean". I'm 5' 6" and 130 pounds... sort of smallish for a guy, right? that doesn't matter one tiny bit! When I see a need to do so, I can make that 1,000 pound horse think I'm bigger, meaner, and tougher than he/she is and that I'll most likely kill it if it doesn't change it's ways. All without doing any harm to the horse! Sure, it may feel a bit of pain if needed but, it won't be harmed.

An example was fairly recent. I was at a horse facility, just a small family farm really, and wanted to go take a look at a mare in the pasture. The gal who I had been riding with earlier, the owner, said "Go ahead!" I had been in the pasture before but never alone. I had had one of the owners with me.

This time, as I entered the pasture and started toward the mare in question, a gelding that is a fairly dominant horse among the herd took exception.

He pinned his ears and started a fast walk toward me.

It was his challenge and it was dangerous. I could run for the fence and dive out of the pasture. That would have kept me from being kicked/bitten/struck but it would also mean that I would never be safe going into the pasture alone in the future.

So, I kept on going, as if nothing in the world was wrong. I watched him from the corner of my eye as he approached. When he got within striking range, I exploded in his face, smacked him HARD on the nose, and backed him up a good ten yards until his ears came forward. I did not give him any option but to go backwards!

For the rest of my time in the pasture, that gelding followed me around like a puppy dog but, at a respectful distance.
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post #7 of 30 Old 12-28-2015, 01:59 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Alhefner View Post
In my opinion, I think this is where you're headed as things stand now:
https://youtu.be/vZRLA7Ivh7Q

So, I stated that I would have more on getting "big and mean". I'm 5' 6" and 130 pounds... sort of smallish for a guy, right? that doesn't matter one tiny bit! When I see a need to do so, I can make that 1,000 pound horse think I'm bigger, meaner, and tougher than he/she is and that I'll most likely kill it if it doesn't change it's ways. All without doing any harm to the horse! Sure, it may feel a bit of pain if needed but, it won't be harmed.

An example was fairly recent. I was at a horse facility, just a small family farm really, and wanted to go take a look at a mare in the pasture. The gal who I had been riding with earlier, the owner, said "Go ahead!" I had been in the pasture before but never alone. I had had one of the owners with me.

This time, as I entered the pasture and started toward the mare in question, a gelding that is a fairly dominant horse among the herd took exception.

He pinned his ears and started a fast walk toward me.

It was his challenge and it was dangerous. I could run for the fence and dive out of the pasture. That would have kept me from being kicked/bitten/struck but it would also mean that I would never be safe going into the pasture alone in the future.

So, I kept on going, as if nothing in the world was wrong. I watched him from the corner of my eye as he approached. When he got within striking range, I exploded in his face, smacked him HARD on the nose, and backed him up a good ten yards until his ears came forward. I did not give him any option but to go backwards!

For the rest of my time in the pasture, that gelding followed me around like a puppy dog but, at a respectful distance.
wow wow, your very brave for that. I totally understand what your saying and its great advice. i just have one question. will he still like me after that. that might sound very cheesy but he is my very first personal horse and i want to have a great relationship with him. thankyou

-hannah-
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post #8 of 30 Old 12-28-2015, 02:16 AM
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Originally Posted by hannahnicole View Post
wow wow, your very brave for that. I totally understand what your saying and its great advice. i just have one question. will he still like me after that. that might sound very cheesy but he is my very first personal horse and i want to have a great relationship with him. thankyou
Yes, your horse will "like you" even MORE! He'll respect you and you'll have moved way up in his view as "the leader".

Watch the videos that have been linked in the other replies.
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post #9 of 30 Old 12-28-2015, 02:51 AM
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With horses they either respect you or don't.
My TB has feed time issues and one time he aimed a kick at my head not close enough it would land but close enough he was trying to intimidate me.
I just picked up the lunge whip and I made him regret that thought very quickly (I did not hit him I just chased him) when I did let him in he was hesitant to come towards me and the food. I let him in and then I chased him off his dinner. I'm the boss and I won't accept anything less then ears forward and a calm walk when I have food.
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post #10 of 30 Old 12-28-2015, 03:07 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Rainaisabelle View Post
With horses they either respect you or don't.
My TB has feed time issues and one time he aimed a kick at my head not close enough it would land but close enough he was trying to intimidate me.
I just picked up the lunge whip and I made him regret that thought very quickly (I did not hit him I just chased him) when I did let him in he was hesitant to come towards me and the food. I let him in and then I chased him off his dinner. I'm the boss and I won't accept anything less then ears forward and a calm walk when I have food.
how long did it take for him to get out of the food aggressive habit?
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