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Signs of a Beaten Horse

834 Views 12 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  krisadreyer
I’m trying to figure out what is wrong with a pony. He isn’t mine, he belongs to a family friend. He was pretty underweight when they got him. At first, after getting him to a healthy weight, he was a good little pony. He was sold as a kids pony. But now he is bucking and is very hard to catch. I’m working with him in a round pen right now and if I walk up to him he is extremely jumpy and literally shivers if I put my hand out. He is very protective of his right side. If I put my hand too high he freaks out. Not like a normal spook but eyes wide and shivering. Hates being patted. Once the halter is on he seems like he’s shut down. He seems zoned out. I think who ever broke him just threw a saddle on and rode him. Skipped everything else.
I’m not saying he was abused but it seems pretty likely, to me. What do y’all think?
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So I’m going with “he was started wrong or too quickly” conclusion. I worked with him again today and I got him to join up with me twice and we ended the session there. When I work with him he just shivers and I feel so bad. I can just tell he is shut down, like when i look at his eyes he is looking past me, if that makes sense. Like he’s reacting in his head but his body is standing still. I almost want him to react to see him come back to reality, but of course I won’t force him. He started to open up when we joined up. He likes hay pellets so far. He does get curious but then just shuts down again. I tried a tiny bit of desensitizing but after a slight reaction then back to being shut down I stopped. At the moment I’m really just trying to figure him out. Not really train him. I’m also going to talk to his owner about his behavior and why he is suddenly acting like this.
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