I want to clarify that I’m really just looking to build my knowledge rather than looking for actionable tips, as the horse isn’t mine and the BO isn’t taking suggestions.
I wrote about this guy in the past. He’s a rather older horse, forever used in lessons, I know nothing about his background, other than the fact that he’s the beginner horse n.2, after the even older pony mare. He used to be used in a class for blind riders, too. Cool headed, sure footed and calm, slow and steady, the real school master.
Well since a few months, he’s a bit of a terror. He’s quiet and compliant and same old - until he is not. I’ve fallen off twice, both times because of an unannounced and unplanned change of direction with a little jump sideways and a buck. I’ve seen him bolt and buck, I’ve seen him canter and go down with his front legs pulling his rider to the ground like a catapult. Last night, he nearly tossed me for the third time, same procedure. I won the argument by staying on and repeating the exercise until he complied, but it wasn’t exactly pleasant. I also have to admit that I stayed on because I was kind of expecting him to throw a number sooner or later but still, it’s not fun to ride anticipating disaster. I had him for hacks outside and he’s very quiet. I have a hunch that it isn’t really pain - the reaction timing is inconsistent, he’s not exactly giving an explosive response, and this has been going on for a while now - various riders, various conditions. I can only describe this as he’s bored. Bored of beginners, to be precise and he’s learnt that if he suddenly stops or squirts sideways or bucks lightly,
they (we) fall off. He’s not mean, but could it be that he is just saying “I had enough”? I can’t really request another horse at the moment and I am hoping that learning to deal with him will teach me some skills, but is there anything I can try to do with him specifically? He shows no sign of tension, just randomly accelerates on one side stumbling and jumping and trying to buck while you’re merrily posting trot.