The Horse Forum banner

Horse major personality change

2220 7
I have had my 8 year old QH gelding for 10 months now. When I first purchased him, he would go off on a trail by himself (he was previously used as a trail horse), stood still in the crossties, let me catch him, hardly spooked and was a very easy-going horse.
The past 4 months however, he refuses to leave the farm so much so that he whirls around and tries to bolt back to the barn and the more I ask him to go, the worse he gets to the point he rears and backs up rapidly while spinning. He has also been fidgeting in the crossties and almost every time I put him in them, he twists around in them until they snap and then he will bolt out of the barn.
When on a trail ride with others he continually bucked and would half-rear and fidget when I asked him to halt for any reason. He continues to buck and spook over the same things he sees every day.
He won't let me catch him and today I spent 15 minutes trying and every time I got close, he whirled away and kicked directly at my head each time.
He is perfectly healthy, no saddle problems, teeth done a few months ago, no hoof/leg problems etc. I don't let him get away with bad behavior either. If he misbehaves, I lunge him, make him back up, and move his hindquarters and shoulders away from me. I don't understand what is going on. I was riding him 2 to 3 times a week as well. He stays out 24/7 unless the weather was cold. He has been pastured with other geldings but right now is with three mares. I have a trainer but I'm to the point of selling him. He is getting more and more aggressive and I've had too many close calls recently.
Any advice is greatly appreciated thanks.
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

· Premium Member
Joined
·
24,143 Posts
It sounds like he could be hurting when you're riding him. I know you said saddle's fine, but how was it checked? Also there are other reasons for pain/discomfort aside from saddle fit & teeth. More to bit problems than bad teeth too.

Lack of magnesium & too much potassium are common reasons for 'behavioural issues', and other diet & nutrition factors can have a bearing, so I'd consider that carefully. What do you feed him?

Other than that, it is likely that (respectfully) it is you or something about the way you deal with/ride him that he is not dealing with well.... or dealing with very well but not in a way you like. ;-) Without more info, can't say what that might be though. What has the trainer said about it? Have they ridden him & how did he behave for them?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3,459 Posts
How long has he been with the mares?

It could be caused by pain but I'm thinking it isn't. Pain usually causes a sudden change in behavior.

To me, it sounds like he has become buddy sour or has lost his respect towards you. More likely the latter if he was just moved in with the mares and because of the way he behaves when you ride with others.

Many times that a horse changes owner, it is good for a period of time. After some time, they test the waters just like in a herd, to see if they can move up in the herd hierarchy. They will do small challenges at first that many do not notice or just let slide. After some more time, the challenges then get bigger to the point where you are.

You can ask your trainer to help you. Just remember not all trainers are good with training horses vs people. Some are better at training people. Some are better at training horses. Some can finish horses but don't know how to start them or fix problems. Some can start or fix problem but not finish them. Just because someone is a trainer doesn't mean they can do it all. A riding instructor may not know how to train a horse. I usually can get horses to do what I want but have no expertise in training others how to ride.

My first action with your horse would be to get his ground manners back in check, especially about when tied. You say you correct him when he misbehaves but you might not be firm enough since he continues. I think you need to put a little fear back in him, a "come to Jesus" meeting is in order. If he had always been fearful or acting out of fear, it would be different.
Posted via Mobile Device
 
  • Like
Reactions: natisha

· Registered
Joined
·
6,080 Posts
Sounds like he started acting up and it escalated quickly to many areas. Pain would have nothing to do with his crosstie behavior.

I first would separate him from the other horses, they tend to appreciate you more when they are lonely. His personality should calm down some and then you can get more focus from him.

You have so many issues that they need to be addresses individually such as when in cross ties this is now part of him knowing he can get away with.

If a horse whirled and kicked at me I would be carrying a buggy whip so that I could reach him with out getting close enough to get kicked and he would get a spanking.

My concern is that with all of these new bad habits you are not capable of correcting them or they would not have gotten so out of hand to begin with.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
7,141 Posts
Spoiled and herd bound. Period. You need to get his respect back. When he runs from you what do you do? Personally, I chase mine, but we have "practiced" this in an indoor and round pen, initially on a line. Is he ever refuses to come to me and FACE me-me gets chased away and made to work-then we try again. Basically- getting respect.

SOme horses will not tolerate being separated from their friends unless they are pretty confined-like he is in the barn alone…..for increasing amounts of time.

This is why I am so happy to finally have a horse to is happy alone.
 

· Banned
Joined
·
2,469 Posts
Some geldings just shouldn't be pastured with mares. It appears he's one of them. All of the above applies.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top