huge success (and a bit of a rant) - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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huge success (and a bit of a rant)

So last thread I talked about being kicked at while feeding one of the rescue horses and how the owner refused to train the horse to behave.

Well I had a talk with her, helped by the fact that she believed me looking at other rescues to work at meant I was leaving her place (it didn't but I let her believe that) and I got the green light to start basic training of some of the horses including the one that kicked at me.

I don't have my training lead rope yet so I just wanted to work on food aggression and backing out of my space today.

I put his food outside the pen and entered and of course he's all over me, wouldn't step back, etc. So I swished the whip at him and of course he flipped out and started running and kicking. All expected. I got him to the other side of the pen and blocked him off and eventually he quieted down and stayed still. He lowered his nose so I went to get his food. Then he started following me so we started again. More of the same until he was quiet. Again I went to get his food and he immediately came at me so out it went. He wasn't real pleased with that and we basically had to start from step 1. Got him quiet at the other side of the pen, got his food, stayed in front of it, horse stayed still..... lowered his head... I left the pen and let him eat. To me this is a huge success for day 1.

Then later working on backing him up. I don't think anyone ever taught him this because he had no idea what to do when I walked into his space. Working with a red flag at the end of a dressage whip I followed Ian Leighton's video and after 5 minutes of work got him to back out of my space w/o using the whip one time. Praised and petted him and let him be. That was enough for day 1.

I'm now ok to show up every day to work the horses a little bit to improve their manners. Whether she'll let me work on her "babies" (her favorite horses) we'll have to see.

If I can get all the horses at this rescue to behave properly I'll be a happy happy person and though I'm sure she'll grumble about it and point out my training shortcomings I think even the owner will find it hard to argue with success.

Oh... I didn't include the rant... oh well, I can let it go.
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post #2 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:15 PM
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Sounds like you made great progress! It is amazing how just a little bit of behavior training gets such good results.
I would think a rescue would be thankful for folks to help train the horses. The better trained (on the ground OR in the saddle, but especially on the ground) the horse, the more likely they are to get a home and to STAY in a home. I don't get where some people have the disconnect.
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post #3 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:26 PM
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sounds very promising.
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post #4 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:28 PM
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Excellent! Looking forward to your future reports!
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post #5 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:43 PM
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Well done you!
Once she realises that the horses are not afraid of you having been so very nasty to them, perhaps she will realise that firm fair discipline leads to a happier and safer horse.
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post #6 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Foxhunter View Post
Once she realises that the horses are not afraid of you having been so very nasty to them, perhaps she will realise that firm fair discipline leads to a happier and safer horse.
And perhaps pigs will one day fly! I like your optimism, but I have learned, especially in the last week, that common sense isn't so common these days
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post #7 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 04:58 PM
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Sounds like you had a really rewarding day. Good job!

Now I want to "hear" the rant. You're pretty insightful, so I would find the mini-rant informative.
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post #8 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 05:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karliejaye View Post
Sounds like you made great progress! It is amazing how just a little bit of behavior training gets such good results.
I would think a rescue would be thankful for folks to help train the horses. The better trained (on the ground OR in the saddle, but especially on the ground) the horse, the more likely they are to get a home and to STAY in a home. I don't get where some people have the disconnect.
Unfortunately, a lot of rescues seem to have gotten away from the save 'em, feed 'em, fit 'em and re-home 'em thought process. They "save" 'em, feed 'em and there's where I see the disconnect starting.
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post #9 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 05:05 PM
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Well done!! By doing this you are giving these horses a chance for a better life. I'm sure people who come to look for a horse would happily choose a well behaved one over a spoiled brat.
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post #10 of 33 Old 02-09-2015, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Foxhunter View Post
Well done you!
Once she realises that the horses are not afraid of you having been so very nasty to them, perhaps she will realise that firm fair discipline leads to a happier and safer horse.
OP, I'm very impressed. You had a good, workable plan and accomplished your goals. I am sorry that you are not writing about training your own horse. Some rescues are great, but, they are a business write off, and not everybody is running any kind of real stable. I "adopted" (first time) "Buster Brown", to be 9yo unregistered QH. Of the two that run this one, the wife is really the trainer, the husband is a wannabe. SHE broke in my horse.
The horses that end up in rescues are whatever horses that the owners decide to keep there. At the one above, I was told that two horses would never leave, then saw them up for "adoption" a year later, when the economy was really tanking.
I believe that your time might be better spent at a real stable, or offering training help to a newbie who has a horse with fairly easy to fix problems.
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