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I was looking at horses on craigslist (I can't seem to help myself, even though I don't have a place for a horse yet :wink:), and ran across a gorgeous gelding.

The ad claimed his only bad habit is he won't tie. The horse is ten years old. Is that too old to fix the problem? How would you go about doing that?

Or is this a depends on the horse (and what freaked him out about tying) sort of problem?
 

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It's more of a "depends on the person" kind of a thing. If you are an experienced horseman then you can probably get it done. It may not be easy and it may not be pretty so if your one of the people that can't stand to see a horse struggle or get bothered by something then you may want to steer clear of him. It wouldn't bother me any but you need to decide if you are up to it. Be honest because you won't be doing yourself or the horse any favors if youare overestimating your abilities.
 

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Thanks Kevin.

He's probably one I should pass on, plus he'll likely be gone anyway before I can really do some serious horse shopping. I was curious about what the process would be, though I guess I should have figured it wouldn't be an easy fix or the owner would have taken care of the problem already.
 

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I would use a Blocker tie ring and see if that worked. If not I might have to pull something out of the "old-time cowboy methods bag" and get a little rough.
 

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Horses end up with this problem for a bunch of reasons and the fix is not always an easy one.
It really depends on how bad they took the first training that they got.

There was an old (stupid)method that took a horse that was pulling back and the handler would tie a rope around the girth of the horse (just like a saddle cinch),the the rope would come up under the chest,around the nose and them tie to a hard wall.
The horse was left to fight it out.
The rope does not really release and the horse would in many cases completely panic.
The idea behind it was that the horse "Would just get it out of his system".
And "This will teach him a lesson".

I had one of these horses and he bore the scare on his chest from being torn open as he flipped himself over and over.
He was given to me by the person that did it and I was told that he would never tie.
This was done to him when he was 4 months old.


Something like this could take years to get the horse over it.
 

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4 months old! I just can't believe it. :-(

I think tie and let struggle works for some horses, but absolutely doesn't work for others who just keep fighting till they kill themself.
 

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I know we always start youngsters with momma tied and we hold the rope as if they are tied. Most of their beginning training without momma is still done in groups of with older horses sstanking calmly. I've never had one truly freak. Why in the world would someone do that to a 4 month old??? We don't start tying until at least 6 months to a little under a year. All depending on when the colt seems calm enough to do it.

What would you do in the case of a ten year old like this Kevin? I'm not sure of how it could actually be fixed...I know what I would try, but since I've never had the experience I have no idea how that would work...lol.
 

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I'm actually VERY curious...kevinshorses...enlighten me?

My 2 1/2 year old Clyde/TB filly has a small tying issue. Once every, say, 6 months she gets it in her head she's stronger than the fencepost she's tied to. She's only ever gotten free once and was immediately re-tied and stood nicely. It's as if she does it just to check that she *could*. Between these occurances, she never tests it, always stands with slack in the line.

How would you handle this? We had a very nice "patience post"...an old THICK tree that fell down but the trunk still stands about 10 feet tall. I've used that for years but on Eve's first freakout, she moved it so I no longer use it...since then I've had bailing twine around a fencepost...held her once, broke once. She's only really tried pulling 3 times. What do you think?

Sorry to hi-jack your topic...but it's still on the tying scenario so I think it applies. Just giving an example.
 

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I'm not Kevin but I would tie the horse properly and let him work it out.
My first preference, one that no horse can break or hurt themselves is a high line.
I have a 3/4 inch rope that can have a loop knotted in the middle and then tie between 2 strong but flexable tree limbs. The rope strung tightly about 8 feet off the ground and tied fast at each end to a good tree branch or young tree offers flex and no chance to the horse to become entangled.
I ONLY use KNECK ropes for the tie with the lead passing through a halter. a good big soft kneck rope tied to the centre loop about an arms length long and let the horse go for it. He can throw himself, sit back or anything else and he can not do damage.

Next is a truck inner tube looped around a stought tree branch or tree and the neck rope tied to that weither height and arms length but the horse could hit the tree so it is my second choice.

3rd is a good ring anchored to the side of the barn to a good post with proper lags and tie to that, wither height and arms length.

Every time you tie the horse, make it with a neck rope and something solid. this is forever or until the horse over a long times shows he will not fight.
On the side of a trailer I have unbreakable loops welded to the frame and again the horse gets a neck rope. I have seen a bad horse slide the corner of the trailer but it stayed tied .

Never set them up to win.

YOu want to be really safe, teach the horse to hobble, I teach front and back and it takes 5 minutes a day for 3 days and if the horse has a brain it will hobble without a fuss

Neck ropes are not popular on this forum but where I live, in amish country every horse is tied by them. I can see a 100 horses tied sunday morning outside a church and every single one wears a neck rope.
 

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What you are saying makes sense. I never thought about how a high line could be really useful there. I would have started with hobbles because I wouldn't have thought of the line. I'll definitely keep that in mind if I ever get in a situation in the future.

We hobble when we have a horse that paws or just generally acts up when tied. It's never fun if you are at a show, and the horse at the trailer is rearing and acting a fool while you're riding another.

Thanks for giving some advice. :)
 

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Thanks RiosDad - I understand the highline and that makes sense...but tie her to 2 trees? Kinda like crossties? I'm a little cloudy on that part.

I used a body rope when initially teaching her to tie, but never tied the body rope...just kept the line around the tree and picked up tension when needed. This is my old patience post - not the best pic to show, but you can see the red lead rope tied to it at her ear height, usually tied it with roughly 3-5 feet of slack.


She freaked on it once and made the trunk move in the ground so I don't use it anymore. The time she freaked tied to it though she got over herself, stepped up, I left her there for another 5 minutes, and untied her to carry on with whatever we did that day.

I don't have a barn to attach a solid ring to for tying...and have yet to sink a post more than 3 feet in the ground as a new patience post. My best bet at the moment sounds like I have to find new trees...yes?

Also, a neck rope is basically a tied loop that can't tighten around the horse's neck with a lead under the chin and through the halter loop, right? I've seen them before but never fully understood how they worked...it's the same basic idea as a body rope, but using just past the pole, yes? Sorry if this makes me sound stupid, I've never dealt with a horse that pulled...well, one but she flipped herself and never pulled again after MANY tying sessions with the patience post in the picture! I'll try to find a better pic...
 

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There we go...


But since I saw her MOVE it, I'm scared to use it...don't want her to take it down and spook her with it or have her hurt...

I'll look into sinking a 12 foot railway tie in the spring...sink it 4-5 feet and have 2 rings available. One regular height, one at the top.
 

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I like riosdads methods. When you tie a horse high up it takes a lot of the power away from them. The reason I like the tie ring is that it teaches a horse to use its brain. The halter doesn't pull tight and cause pain further panicing them so they soon see no reason to pull back. As far as occasional pullers, if one of my horses pulls back they have no chance to get away. I use rope halters with tied on lead ropes so there is no hardware to break and they are tied to a steel hitch rail set in cement. When they spook I might wave my arms or hat at them untill they quit fighting which usually takes only a few seconds. If it takes very long I have a bigger problem and I start with the tie ring.

When I was a kid my dad had a horse that was given to him because of the problems he had. He was prone to bucking and would not stand tied. My dad cured the bucking with a lot of hard riding but the pulling back was much harder. After a couple months he would still pull back unexpectedly. One day I had tied him to the middle of a wooden rail fence, when he pulled back he tore the rail off the fence and the rail flattened my dad. That was the last time I tied a horse to the middle of the rail and the last time that horse ever pulled back. My dad used an old lariet to make what he called a war bridle and tied him to a huge cottonwood tree that was growing in the middle of the corral. Then we rode off for the day to move some cattle and put out salt. At this point the horse had broken enough equipment and injured enough people that he had to get better or be put down so if he broke his neck fighting the rope then so be it. It bothered my dad to ride away and leave that horse, not knowing if he would be alive when we came back but it was the only option at that time. When we came back the horse was standing at that tree with slack in the rope and much skin missing from his head. I might try something like that if the case was severe enough and it was the last option. I haven't seen a horse that bad for a long time. Rarely do I need to even have to use the tie ring. When I break a horse to lead they usually give to pressure well enough that they don't pull back much and get over it quickly.
 

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I understand the highline and that makes sense...but tie her to 2 trees? Kinda like crossties? I'm a little cloudy on that part.
Nope the rope is tied to two trees, and the rope the horse is on is tied to that rope. Here's a picture. :) You would need it higher for what RD was talking about, but we had three very broke trail horses on here. I use a very flexible rope for mine, but for pulling I think you would be more worried about being sure it was strong enough.


PS I love your horse. :)
 

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Thanks so much SmoothTrails...that wasn't making sense in my mind! LOL now I get it...either way I need to find suitable trees and frankly, I don't think I have them. And thanks, I love her too!

So far, the pulling has been our only REAL issue, and like I said, it's occasional. As if just to make sure I'm on top of things. Most often I'm able to just loop her lead around a post and she doesn't even back up to create tension, nevermind trying to pull free. 2 out of 3 times she did it, she got nowhere...the 3rd time she was tied back up and it went well. I'm not sure I'd even call it a problem at this point, more of a training glitch? She's testing.

I still don't fully understand the tie ring though...are we just talking about a solid ring sunk into a post? We have a couple around, it's just a screw in with what looks like a bull ring attached. I've been using ONLY her rope halter, with tie on lead, since about March or so...she was getting pushy with her leather halter and just forgot she needed manners. We've been doing alot of leading and ground work, lunging and voice commands...she's smart as a whip, but selectively dumb as an ox. It's as if she temporarily forgets that she's tied and panics when she feels the tension. It's over in 5 seconds, but I'd like to reinstill the fact that she's going NOWHERE when she's tied!
 

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When I refered to a tie ring I meant the Blocker Tie Ring.
 

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OK, just googled it...it gives slack if pulled hard enough, but what prevents it from just slipping right through? I don't see Eve as the type to pull in a blind panic until she's free of something like that, that would take too much effort on her part. She's kinda lazy that way...but she'd give a couple good hard pulls. The idea behind it is that is all the horse would need to realise they're not being eaten and just step up?

I have to run to work now, but look forward to all the replies this evening! Thanks!
 

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You have to use a long lead rope, about 15-20feet.
 

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Here is a picture of the 4 month old colt that I had mentioned before.
The horse is 11 now and is owned by a student of mine.
You can still see the scar on the right shoulder.

It took some time to get this fellow over his hard beginning and to accept that people were here to help his life.
He ties fine now and has a very happy life.

 

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Ok so I have a question about this as well ... I have quickly read through some of this but didn't see what i needed...

My gelding randomly pulls back- and normally it is when he has my nice saddle on him (yeah great timing). It is sporadic (about once or twice a month) and out of the blue. After the pull back you can tie him up and he is fine and then when i go to ride him he is fine too.

I thought that maybe he was training to ground tie (that is what the guy did when i went to ride him) but he will stand for a min. and when i go get something else he walks away or follows me.

I don't have any trees to tie him to... I have a hitching post and the secure in the ground. Should I tie him to that and just leave him for a long amount of time?
 
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