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You are in... Forums > Riding and Training > Hacking > My nice pony has turned into a nightmare!

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cc1976

Joined:

Jul 08

Posts: 8

cc1976 says:

My nice pony has turned into a nightmare!

I have owned by fell mare for nearly 5 years and although I did have problems with her when she was younger (running backwards/rearing and bucking etc) over the last 3 years she has calmed down into a nice little mare and most of the time she was more likely to be lazy on a hack than a handful!  Following a severe case of laminitis she was brought back into work over a year ago and the problems only started last autumn on my first 10 mile fun ride where she flung her head around so agressively that she got the reins off me and I had to dismount before she bolted.  Since then the behaviour settled for a while until more recently when the head tossing returned when out hacking when she is returning home or if asked for trot.  Also at times when checked for her behaviour or asked to stand still she jumps around, bounces on the spot or runs backwards, refusing to do anything asked of her.  I know from her past that she does not suffer from lack of confidence (very few things scare her particularly humans!) and that this behaviour is basically turning into a bad habit.  I have tried spinning her in circles, lessons (Parelli helped the most when she was younger), various hormonal supplements and generally trying my best to be assertive but I am fast loosing my confidence.  I am planning more lessons but would be grateful if anyone can offer advice?

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katz

Joined:

May 09

Posts: 704

katz says:

Re: My nice pony has turned into a nightmare!

 Fristly your girl is beautiful and got a cheeky twinkle in her eye!

if you've had her teeth,back saddle and bit checked!

i would advise going back to doing some very basic schooling 

my girl is a very dominate mare who will rule the roost if you let her! so also has suffered alot in her pass and was a recused at 2yrs old and her owner was prosucuted but that does not excuse bad behavoir if our girl dosent think that we are strong enough to be her leader she will take over and really have to do everything in a calm confident manner i know this is'nt always easy.

ive lost my reins due to sky snatching them out my hands and i had to slowy pull her head up by her mane to get the reins back which were just behide her ears! this is not a nice feeling 

you could try and bridge your reins 

or if you feel it coming really squeeze the rein like you were squeezing water out of a sponge and release then repeat if nessary she wont like it at frist but this works for me also keep your elbows tucked in to your sides this will keep them flexible and your have more time to react

lessons would be great!

but try to do some very basic schooling walk at a pace you want to go at going in the direction you to ask for halt if she doesnt walk on a few steps and ask for it again some horses find it really difficult to stand still, mine does

and walk on a really long rein to let her stretch out then take the reins back

those are a few things that have help me with sky she still snatch occasional but no where near like she use to you 

i hope this helps a little 

you've come this far dont give up yet you can do it!

Kat

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cc1976

Joined:

Jul 08

Posts: 8

cc1976 says:

Re: My nice pony has turned into a nightmare!



Thank you and I will upload some more photos soon as these are from when I first bought her when she was 4!  You are spot on about her cheekiness!
 

Sorry to hear about Sky's bad start in life but at least she has ended up in a great home.  She is a really pretty girl and looks like she loves attention.

Her teeth, saddle etc are fine but I know she doesnt like the bit (a lozenge type pelham).  I use the pelham only when I need more control  (the running backwards in the pelham is slightly worse than her french link fulmer snaffle but she cant get the reins off me when she is in the pelham) - problem is she strongly objects to being told what to do and does have a soft mouth so basically fights the pelham!  You are right about the attitude as like you mare she is definitely a dominent type and reacts to being told off through various ways which include foot stamping, squealing or as previously mentioned!  It is really difficult to find a balance as to keeping your cool whilst also making sure she doesnt always get the upper hand and I think that is why Parelli has helped in the past but she will also have the ability to revert to her old ways when she feels the need!

I will try using the snaffle with the technique you have mentioned to stop her snatching the reins to see if this helps and will also try more schooling.  Again this isnt easy as she has always hated the school which I think is partly down to bad experiences she had in the school whilst being broken in and also because she has to do what you ask.  My new instructor does seem to be slowly getting the better of her so fingers crossed once my lessons recommence that should help.

Thanks again for the tips.

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cc1976

Joined:

Jul 08

Posts: 8

cc1976 says:

Re: My nice pony has turned into a nightmare!

Kirsty, sorry to hear you are experiencing similar problems but also good to hear you are starting to see some improvement

Will def try the hacking lessons as was thinking of asking my instructor to hack her out to see what she thinks is the problem.

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