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To train or not to train.....?

  • Train on your own with books and videos.

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Discussion Starter #1
My 2 yr old was given to me as a yearling and is my first horse that is officialy my own. I know a lot about care and just a little about ridding, nearly nothing about training. So though Im training him myself, I have a trainer helping. But I constantly worry that Im just not quailified to do this,even with assistance. I just dont like the idea of someone else training him....What would you all do?
 

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If I were you I would get a gentle old horse and learn to ride before I accepted the responsibility of a young horse. I think your horse would be much better off if you sent him to a trainer and let the trainer ride him for at least two months while you take riding lessons at least twice a week. If you can't do that you will not have too much success training him. A young horse needs a balanced capable rider for the initial training. If you are off balance and inexperienced then the horse will be much more likely to develop bad habits.
 

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I too voted to send the youngster off to the trainer's. To bring a baby up to be a solid and reliable good citizen takes a lot of experience on top of pretty excellent riding ability. Those first rides can be key in setting the baby up for his using life, and if something goes wrong then you're well set for issues later. So, I would find a good, reputable trainer to do the starting, and look into taking some riding lessons on a horse that matches you and your skill level in the meantime. If your trainer will allow you to "visit" and see what he/she's doing, and even give a "lesson" to get you and your guy settled, so much the better. If in doubt, get help before things go south.

Good luck!
 

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I too voted to send the youngster off to the trainer's. To bring a baby up to be a solid and reliable good citizen takes a lot of experience on top of pretty excellent riding ability. Those first rides can be key in setting the baby up for his using life, and if something goes wrong then you're well set for issues later. So, I would find a good, reputable trainer to do the starting, and look into taking some riding lessons on a horse that matches you and your skill level in the meantime. If your trainer will allow you to "visit" and see what he/she's doing, and even give a "lesson" to get you and your guy settled, so much the better. If in doubt, get help before things go south.

Good luck!
If trainer does NOT allow that stay away from such trainer. As far as possible. :D

I agree with other people, if you have enough money and know a good trainer it's better to send him there and take lessons under the trainer (although some trainers don't like anyone to ride horse in training for first couple weeks). If you don't have enough money (good trainers are NOT cheap) - go with the lessons from good trainer. Learning from books/videos is great (AND beneficial) but unfortunately not enough when you deal with the horse in real life.
 

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If you have to ASK if you should be training this horse, you probably shouldn't be. From the sounds of it I would say you and the horse would benefit much more from sending him to a trainer (not I don't agree with the 'having no part' thing, I would never want to not have ANY part in my horses training) than you would from training him yourself.

I got my first horse, a very HOT mare. I didn't take lessons or 'officially' have a trainer, but my mom has ridden for a long time and was always supervising. Let me just say my horse went through ALOT while I was trying to learn what exactly I should be doing with her, and she proved to be the most tolerant horse I have ever seen. Looking back on it, I feel AWFUL for what I put my mare through (hauling on her mouth, getting ****y with her when I wasn't clear with her, etc). It's just something you can't undo, and if you don't have a tolerant horse like this mare, it could be a disaster. You could also cause a huge mess for a trainer to undo when you finally decide you can't train this horse yourself.
 

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If trainer does NOT allow that stay away from such trainer. As far as possible. :D
Completely agree with this, if a trainer doesn't allow you to see your horse - there is a reason, never heard of it being a good reason either.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Just to be a little more informative, I have been ridding and working around horses for many years, Ive just never owned one. I am taking ridding lessons because though I can "ride" anything you put me on,it isnt going to be pretty lol. Im not good with the finer points, like keeping my hands really still and not leaning forward.I want very much to be as much a part of Salems training as I can, I think that really benefits the bond and understanding. As for getting rid of Salem and getting an older horse, I wasnt even looking to own a horse to begin with,he was given to me and I accepted him because Ive never seen such a sweet quiet young horse.His personality won me over completely and I dont think I would find another horse that would get me like that.I just kinda wondered what other people thought about "self-training" and hoped someone would have some suggestions for how to make this as good as possible for us both.
 

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I think it takes a much bigger person to admit they need help than it takes to be one that thinks they can do everything.

I vote send to a professional trainer. Find your self a trainer that knows you want to learn and the trainer can train the horse while he teaches you what he is doing.

You most certainly do not have to all of your horses training to have a bond with them. Life is not that much of a fairytale.

I know a lot about care and just a little about ridding, nearly nothing about training.
You posted that line. Read it and think about your horse. Do what is best for your horse!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I dont want to sound like Im arguing,I asked for everyones advice. But I dont need to read or think about what I said.I would never even consider sending him away to a trainer where I cant see every little thing that happens,I dont trust anyone that much. I say "bond" and I dont just mean a loving sunggly thing, Im referring also to the respect a horse has for the person who taught him respect right from the beginning. I see too many people at the barn where I work and board who send a horse to a trainer,trainer tells them what to do and after two weeks of things being ok, they cant figure out why the horse is misbehaving again. I dont do anything new without my trainer,she shows us and then when I can do it to her satisfaction,we practise on our own.
 

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I really wish people would give up on this romantic notion that the only way you can have the complete love and respect of a horse is to train it yourself from the beginning, or that your bond with your horse will be enhanced if you "learn together." Equine brains don't work like that. They just don't. A horse, given the opportunity, is capable of establishing a strong bond with his herdmates, new herdmates even.

What I am saying is that, "I want "the respect a horse has for the person who taught him right from the beginning" isn't a good reason to train your own horse.

As far as the people at your barn who's horses are misbehaving and being sent off to the trainer's, chances are that the horses are misbehaving because of something their owners are doing. So if the owner doesn't change their behaviour and goes back to the same thing which caused the horse to act out in the first place, then of course the horse will resume misbehaving. You don't need to back your own horse to avoid this. You just need to learn good horsemanship skills and know something about equine behaviour.
 

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Kevin is completely right. Green + green= black and blue. Ultimately your relationship with your horse will suffer because you won't know how to ask him for what you want and he won't know how to give it to you. It is so easy to ruin a horse.

I also just got my first horse who is my very own and have a trainer helping me learn to ride and work with him. My horse is a 20 year old schoolmaster TB. There is nothing I love more than being able to just hop on him and learning new things from him, because he demands that I ride properly or he won't comply. When I get on a less well trained horse it is glaringly obvious that I could never survive a greenie at this point in my riding.

It is awesome that you have this new baby, but will be more awesome for both of you if you send him off to a trainer and then find a very experienced rider to lease him until you are ready for him. Even a free lease would be better than letting him sit, because you're going to want to keep all that expensive training on him.
 

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In situations like this, it almost always boils down to this questions:

"Would you like to pay for a trainer NOW or LATER?"

All the arguements you have for not wanting to send your horse to a professional are the exact arguements for why you SHOULD. Because one day, someone else will probably end up owning your horse, and they'll be stuck with the problems created.

If you have a trainer working with you, then perfect. Just don't think you can do it alone. You aren't doing your horse any favors. I would LOVE to have the cash to work with a reining trainer with Jynxy, but alas I don't and I don't delude myself either that I have the ability to train Jynxy to do reining. So I won't bother, because I'd rather wait and do it right then start some half cocked scheme by myself and screw her up in the head.

Bond shmond. I bought Jynx when she was 2 years old and that brat won't get out of my back pocket. I raised my gelding from birth and I owned him for 15 years, and within six months, he didn't have a CLUE who I was. Horses are not fickle like humans. You are nothing but a feed machine, and depending on the horses personality, something to rub against joyfully. Don't pretend it's anything else.
 

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I started out like you...I could ride anything, was it pretty? no...could i really train? Not really...did i train my first horse? yes...was it pretty? no....

I got my first horses and thought i knew everything...I had done some personal research and gone from there. Now my gelding may be super sweet and easy to handle and ride like a charm but im slowly discovering training gaps now that im more experienced. I have never had the option of paying for a trainer or lessons. Recently ive gotten to work with two very good trainers for free because they are nice guys and work where i work. Ive learned better now and i seek them out for my issues.

My point is I wish I had someone like them 2 years ago when i got my gelding. He was green broke to the max but I took him on by myself. He is wonderful BUT there are so many training gaps...and some things hes been taught interfere with trying to fix these gaps so I keep having to come up with totally creative ways to fill in said gaps...

Now that im a million mistakes and thousands of saddle hours later, and after being taught and trained by different professionals Im confident enough to do my own training. I know I can do my own training.

If you are confident enough to know you can ride and that you want to train seek out help...lots of it...your on the right path with your trainer and taking lessons. If you confident this will work.

Now if your NOT 100% confident that you can do this with the help of your trainer then dont do it. Send your horse to the trainer and continue your lessons. There will be pleanty of time to personalize training and bond with your horses after they come back from the trainer.

there are my opinions take then how you like. Just dont do this alone and end up with the gaps that i am having to fix. Be glad you can afford a trainer and dont have to use free (but great an offered!) help...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
As far as the people at your barn who's horses are misbehaving and being sent off to the trainer's, chances are that the horses are misbehaving because of something their owners are doing. So if the owner doesn't change their behaviour and goes back to the same thing which caused the horse to act out in the first place, then of course the horse will resume misbehaving.

If you trained WITH the trainer, you would know what not to do,what works for your horse.
 

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If you have already decided you are doing it correctly why did you ask?
 

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i think you should either send it away to a trainer for a few months while you yourself take tons of lessons, or sell it and buy a old been there done that horse.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
If you have already decided you are doing it correctly why did you ask?
I was just wondering how other people handled similar situations. Figured maybe someone would have some little tips, good tricks for training certain things.
 

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There are no tricks just hard work.
 

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Yes, that helps.
 
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