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You are in... Forums > Riding and Training > General > Naughty or a problem?

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s16nyg

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 14

s16nyg says:

Naughty or a problem?

hey all

had my loan horse (16.2 15yo warmblood) for a few months now and ive noticed more and more problems the more time i spend with him :/

i had his teeth done last week as hadnt been done for 4 years...luckily they were ok.

i had his back and neck checked and sorted 4 weeks ago as he didnt feel right when was riding and she has shown me that he works too mcuh off the forehand so am working on that.

the latest is he doesnt like to be caught and then when in the stable will turn his bum to me if i try and come in to groom or tack up. doesnt make a diff if he is tied up either. he got quite aggressive sunday, turning his bum all the time with ears back and i got scared for the first time ever.....

he is normally a lovely horse but i cant help think something is up? a trust thing or behaviour??

any advice appreciated!!!!!

thanks

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soniadevereux

Joined:

Jun 08

Posts: 4347

Re: Naughty or a problem?

do you ride him every time you see him or do you spend time with him grooming him and generally spending time with him,?

 

Horses - if God made anything more beautiful, he kept it for himself. ~Author Unknown

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s16nyg

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 14

s16nyg says:

Re: Naughty or a problem?

both really. do you think i should just bring him in and pamper him a bit?x

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soniadevereux

Joined:

Jun 08

Posts: 4347

Re: Naughty or a problem?

 I would pamper him the days you are not riding. Some horses enjoy their work and some enjoyed being pampered so they are not working all the time when they see you.  When you do ride him, do you give him a good groom and give him a feed and spend a bit of time with him, or just feed and turnout? Horses need to know when they are being good, so pampering him will help i think. xx

Horses - if God made anything more beautiful, he kept it for himself. ~Author Unknown

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s16nyg

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 14

s16nyg says:

Re: Naughty or a problem?

i try and groom but he just doesnt seem to like it. maybe ill just try some massage or something and a soft brush? this is all if i can catch him mind! x

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jenhavocmanny

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 654

Re: Naughty or a problem?

Why don't you try Join Up ?

 

I do this with my H when he starts getting snotty with me. Really works with him, he kind of goes "sorry mum! "     Help with catching too.

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s16nyg

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 14

s16nyg says:

Re: Naughty or a problem?

fab thanks both shall try this. jen i dont have a paddock as such, can you do it any other way?x

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jenhavocmanny

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 654

Re: Naughty or a problem?

I'm not sure, think it depends on the horse, but have heard it can be done on the lunge.  Also possibly you could make an area with electric fencing, or jumps and wings etc? You could also do ground work with him even just in the stable and teach him that it's not acceptable to show you his bum!

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Rio186

Joined:

Jan 11

Posts: 99

Rio186 says:

Re: Naughty or a problem?

Hey, if you want a good book for bond building tips etc, try 'Perfect Manners' by Kelly Marks.  It was literally a life saver for me!

Also, a very strict routine helps with horses generally.  If you can stick to doing exactly the same thing everyday at the same time and only changing it little by little, it helps them feel less insecure.  If a horse is acting up, there is usually something wrong, so try and find out what it is.  Taking him into the arena on a leadrope and doing a few exercises (moving him around, over poles etc.) can be just as effective as join up (basically the 'dominant horse' is in charge of where the submissive horse moves and puts his feet etc.).

The catching is another way to use the join up principals without a pen.  Just use the same rules, every time he is walking away from you, use aggressive body language - direct eye contact, square shoulders etc - and when he stops to look at you, stop, drop the eye contact, round and turn your shoulders.  Wait for a few seconds, and if he doesn't walk towards you, keep the same body language and move quietly up to him.  If he walks away, go back to the aggressive body language and repeat.  If he lets you go up to him, let him sniff your hand, give him a scratch on the withers and walk away for 5mins or so.  Then do it again and again.  Put the headcollar on, and take it off as many times as you like.  If you spend a week doing that 3 times ever day, I bet you won't have anymore problems!

 

Turning his bum to you is usually described as defensive rather than aggressive behaviour (attacking is head on aggression, such as baring teeth or biting), so you may want to find out why he is feeling threatened (could just be down to a bad past experience in a stable).  Or he may have figured out that the best way to get a person to leave him alone is to turn his bum on them, you just have to figure out first what he want's from you (think about the way he is getting you to react), and second why he wants that.   Sometimes, we do things wrong without even realising it, especially with sensitive horses.

 

Hope any of this helps, and that you manage to sort it out.  Sometimes, it just takes a horse a while to settle in and get used to a new handler.  Just be calm and consistent, and eventually he should quieten down.  The more you can read up on horse psychology and behaviour the better.

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SarahR123

Joined:

Feb 10

Posts: 451

SarahR123 says:

Re: Naughty or a problem?

My WB mare isn't always great in the stable and because she's so big and the space is so limited it affects how I am around her and I think she can use this to her advantage when she's of a mind to.  I always do her outside if I can where there's more space for both of us and she's better behaved.  She is also touchy about grooming on one side which is her "colicky" side - as a result she has some learned behaviours on that side and takes some convincing that a groom is OK. (It's also her near side so the "work" side if you like!)

 I agree Perfect Mannersis a great book but, at the risk of being a bit controversial (& following a horse psychology course with Kelly Marks), my girls seem more relaxed and less stroppy now we've loosened the routine a bit (because of her tendency to colic I was rigid with feed timings and everything really).  Now I don't always bring her in to feed her and I don't always feed her at exactly the same time - especially at this time of year when she's really only on a snack that includes her vits and mins.  As with everything horsey, it's a matter of finding what works for you and your horse.

 

Rio - I'm really interested to read that bum turning is defensive - another day and another new thing learned!  I've always taken it as a warning "I might if you don't watch out..." and I guess it sort of backs that up a bit! Thanks!   I'd definitely back up the non-aggressive posture too.  It's amazing how simple it is and how well it works! 

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3MoodyMaresMum

Joined:

Jun 09

Posts: 827

Re: Naughty or a problem?

My WB is naughty in the stable too sometimes, but I learnt over the years that her big problem is her stable is her space, so I needed to learn to work around it.  I like the fact it is her space as it means she feels safe in there, but it can make it difficult to work on her. The one thing she really does object too is being groomed in her stable, if she is in she will lash out with front legs, try spinning round and planting her rear end in your face, but take her outside to groom, she is as good as gold.

I can do almost anything to her in the stable except groom, so if I were you I would let you lad have the stable as his space and take him outside to groom him, also don't always go into the stable to catch him, go in just to pat him or give him a treat.  My TB now because of all the Vet visits if I go in with a head collar she thinks the worst, so I am working on the head collar meaning nice and not always nasty things will happen - which is going OK until she sees the Vets car then if I h aven't caught her beforehand - forget it!

Just work with him, but I know what you mean about being nervous, trouble is he will p ick up on that and take advantage so stay safe, you'll get there warmbloods are very intelligent but also they are totally loyal when you get the connection.

There is no greater gift than to share time with a creature of such beauty - The Horse.

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