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I am training an 8 month old filly a daughter of a friend rescued from slaughter. She was rescued at three months old with her mother, and when she was weaned a month or two ago she was(and still is) kept in a pen right next to her mother's, so she is still very attached. She was being halter trained in early December, but it was stopped when her owner lost the time for it.

She's somewhat weary of people, she's not dangerous per say, she's only about 13h, not too big...but she has no training. I have no round pen, at all, no access to one. She'll let me pet her almost everywhere. She is pretty calm around me, and is good at respecting space from what I know. She'll back up, or move her butt/forend when I ask and she figures out what I want.

Anyways, I want to have an idea of what to do. I've been trying to get her used to a lead rope, but it freaks her out, and since she can't be caught without a halter or lead rope, I can't get her used to anything because she moves away all the time. She's been nippy because I've been giving her treats , and when the rope comes out she's started turning her butt(not sure if that's from disrespect or she's just turning away, either way its dangerous). I want to correct her but when she doesn't completely trust me yet already, and I have no round pen, how do I find a happy medium of respect?

I am going to teach her ground training and use her in 4h. I plan on halter breaking her, then teaching her showmanship, and de-spooking her. I want this horse bombproof. But to start out, I want to know how to get her to respect and trust me, and get used to the halter in the process. Please give me any advice you may have! Thank you!
 

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If you can get her into a smaller pen I would try to do something like a round pen. Make her move her feet till she sees that your the boss. Once she see that she will follow you anywhere. Get the halter on and work at it. she pulls away follow her but keep her head bent toward you so she can't run away just move sideways till she stops. Knowing it won't hurt her will being to lead with no issue. I have worked with 3 foals in my time raise, trained and I ride them all. I don't have a round pen as well, it is a pain not having one but you can get things done. I hope this was helpful.
 

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If you can get her into a smaller pen I would try to do something like a round pen. Make her move her feet till she sees that your the boss. Once she see that she will follow you anywhere. Get the halter on and work at it. she pulls away follow her but keep her head bent toward you so she can't run away just move sideways till she stops. Knowing it won't hurt her will being to lead with no issue. I have worked with 3 foals in my time raise, trained and I ride them all. I don't have a round pen as well, it is a pain not having one but you can get things done. I hope this was helpful.
Very vague and dangerous advice. You cannot simply put them in a pen, make them move a bit, and voila have a horse that's your bestest friend ever who will let you throw a halter on... Or even follow you for that matter! Horses will not automatically lead once they "know a halter doesn't hurt" - this kind of advice will get someone seriously hurt.

OP, please seek professional help. You need to learn how to read the situation and need to be taught how to apply pressure and release at the exact right instant. We all start somewhere, it is not a bad thing to admit you're in over your head - this is a terrific learning opportunity but IMO you need someone who's been there, done that to show you the ropes and help you out. Training a youngster is an art, IMO. I'm currently watching a 2 year old at my barn get completely ruined by people that haven't the first clue but feel that they don't need help - they think they're horse experts because they watched some DVDs. Now the filly is running and striking at them.
 

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If you can get her into a smaller pen I would try to do something like a round pen. Make her move her feet till she sees that your the boss. Once she see that she will follow you anywhere. Get the halter on and work at it. she pulls away follow her but keep her head bent toward you so she can't run away just move sideways till she stops. Knowing it won't hurt her will being to lead with no issue. I have worked with 3 foals in my time raise, trained and I ride them all. I don't have a round pen as well, it is a pain not having one but you can get things done. I hope this was helpful.
This is exactly what I do with a horse I am training. Most trainers do this as well. It is very effective and works great. I use Clinton Andersons method and his first steps in training a horse is lunging for respect stage one- establishing direction. Step two- change direction. I recomend watching him a couple of times because his method is simple and works wonders. I had never trained a horse before and I watched him and the horse I trained not to brag or anything but is better mannered than one I had proffesionaly trained. But good luck and I hope your training goes well for you.
 

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If you can get her into a smaller pen I would try to do something like a round pen. Make her move her feet till she sees that your the boss. Once she see that she will follow you anywhere. Get the halter on and work at it. she pulls away follow her but keep her head bent toward you so she can't run away just move sideways till she stops. Knowing it won't hurt her will being to lead with no issue. I have worked with 3 foals in my time raise, trained and I ride them all. I don't have a round pen as well, it is a pain not having one but you can get things done. I hope this was helpful.
She's too young to be round penned and this is very dangerous.
Try to get halter on her with a short drag rope and try leading her a bit. Then find someone to help you.
 

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This is exactly what I do with a horse I am training. Most trainers do this as well. It is very effective and works great. I use Clinton Andersons method and his first steps in training a horse is lunging for respect stage one- establishing direction. Step two- change direction. I recomend watching him a couple of times because his method is simple and works wonders. I had never trained a horse before and I watched him and the horse I trained not to brag or anything but is better mannered than one I had proffesionaly trained. But good luck and I hope your training goes well for you.
Not with an 8 month old foal that has barely been handled.
 

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Yes, don't round pen train a weanling, please. They aren't physically or mentally ready.

When I first started with mine, I do a low energy "approach and retreat" game to get the foal hooked on without a lot of drama. Don't give any more treats. If she turns her butt to you, just push her butt away from you.

This is what I did with my filly to start teaching her to give to pressure:


But you really need a trainer or someone experienced with foals (that does not round pen them) to help you. Asking for help on the very first steps on a forum does not bode well for the rest of training.
 

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^ what a great job! Teaching her something, but low pressure....no round pen, no dramatics, just asking quietly....receiving....releasing...and a nice scratch for a job well done. Your filly is cute as a button!
 

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This is exactly what I do with a horse I am training. Most trainers do this as well.
No, to my knowledge, most trainers would not do that, particularly with an 8mo baby, as it can also be hard on bodies, let alone immature ones.
 

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Try to get halter on her with a short drag rope and try leading her a bit. Then find someone to help you.
Just as immature horses are more easily hurt when lunging, so they are if fighting/jerking against physical pressure or being forced. Especially as the OP says they don't have a small safe area & not so experienced, I wouldn't be putting a halter on the horse until it's already comfortable with ropes around it's face & already understands how to yield basically to pressure. I would absolutely not leave a halter on the horse in the paddock either. Looping a loose rope around the neck or nose is a safe way of starting, so if in worst case scenario, you can just let go an end & the horse is free. If the handler is competent, and there is a safe working area, where the handler can allow the horse to move away/resist when it feels the need, without getting out of control or putting too much pressure, it's pretty easy to teach them to yield to halter pressure without force.
 

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If there is an emergency I don't think a halters going to make much of a difference if the horse is not trained to it.
 

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Yes, obviously training is the important part but I think once the horse is "gentled" she won't need a halter kept on all the time. They go together imo.
 
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