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You are in... Forums > Welcome To Your Horse Forum > The Yard > Catching a moody mare!

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malijo

Joined:

Mar 12

Posts: 11

malijo says:

Catching a moody mare!

Hello all,

It's a lovely day today and I thought that I'd go for a lovely ride.  BUT, I spent two and a half hours trying to catch my mare and in the end I had to give up.  I don't normally give up but my lift back home was waiting for me and had to go.  I came home feeling really fed up and really p***ed off that I gave up, I just know she'll remember today and try it on the next time.  I have had one or two problems in the past catching her, it's never taken any more than 15 mins on a bad day, but normally she's happy to see me.

Does anyone have any hints and tips on catching a really moody mare, I even went and got a juicy apple to tempt her, but the girl was not for tempting!

 

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kevinhiatt

Joined:

Aug 10

Posts: 5588

kevinhiatt says:

Re: Catching a moody mare!

Now I know the problem only too well with a Mare that takes the mick, waiting for you to catch her then just before you put the lead rope on she runs off then allows you to get close again then runs off again, its all a game to her but I am too old for that nonsense. Firstly its nice weather secondly my mare is in season and she is sweet on a gelding so get him in first, this worked when she suddendly was without her boyfriend.

Gypsy Gold does not chink & glitter.It gleams in the sun and neighs in the dark.Tonka & Lara my beautiful horses RIP, Nelson,Chloe & Kitty the cats.

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Rio186

Joined:

Jan 11

Posts: 99

Rio186 says:

Re: Catching a moody mare!

Hey, loads of people say that a great way to break the habit is just to catch them, give them a groom or a treat, and then let them go again.  If you do this loads of times (and keep your day free so that you don't have to give up)  then they should eventually stop expecting a big day out of it.  But you have to make it easier for them to be caught than to keep avoiding you.

 

If you keep 'aggressive/assertive' body language (pressure, direct eye contact, straight posture, wide shoulders and arms etc.) whenever she is doing the wrong thing (i.e. walking away from you), but the second she pays you some attention, looks towards you or stops walking away, then switch to passive body language (stop, drop eye contact, round shoulders and turn slightly away) to give her a break as reward.  If she walks away again then switch back, but if she doesn't, try walking up to her, keeping passive.  Anytime she walks away from you go assertive, and anytime she makes an effort to do what you want her to (i.e. let you go up to her) go passive and give her a break.  If you keep the pattern, it almost always works!

The trick is to catch her, give her a pat and/or a treat, and then let her go again... after a break go back and do it again.  You may have to keep the whole day free!  The more you do it, the less time it takes each time, until she learns that it's easier to be caught then it is to keep walking way.  Its all the same principals as join up basically.  But like I said, it also helps to just catch her to spend some quality time together, give her a quick groom, or just a pat once in a while, so that she doesn't always expect work.

 

Hope any of that helps at all, no worries if not.  Best of luck!!!

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pippixox

Joined:

Apr 08

Posts: 1287

pippixox says:

Re: Catching a moody mare!

keep her in a smaller space/field to start with so you stand more of a chance!

now the spring grass is through i guess apples are less tempting as she has plenty to eat. if she out with others? my friend used to have to bring in the other companion to gets hers in as it didnt want to be left on its own.

agree you need to allow loads of time. must be so frustrating :s

my horses are my medicine, without them im even more crazy!

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pippixox

Joined:

Apr 08

Posts: 1287

pippixox says:

Re: Catching a moody mare!

dont know if this is the correct way of doing it,,,, but one day my mare, who at the time was only in a small paddock with one other, decided she didnt want to be caught, which is very unusual for her, so instead i imitated a bit of 'join up' i guess and kept chasing her off, not letting her stop and graze, basically pestering her untill she gave in as she realised she wasnt going to be left to eat! as to start with i would walk up to her and she would just walk away just before i was close enougth, so then chased her off and got her cantering round.... but not sure if this is what you should do. but worked because she actually had to do some work and couldnt just graze

my horses are my medicine, without them im even more crazy!

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kevinhiatt

Joined:

Aug 10

Posts: 5588

kevinhiatt says:

Re: Catching a moody mare!

Is there a right or wrong way? we all have our tricks it whatever works and what you have used on one horse don't work on another grrr. thats what we like about our horses, and have you noticed when you are in a hurry they play up. I should have thought twice about buying a mare but had a rescue TB Chestnut Mare who was lovely now have a Belgian Warmblood Mare who is more of a TB than the rescue horse. People who keep saying to you that with all the years you have with horses you should know what you are doing, sorry but each horse is different and I was lucky to have my soul mate in Tonka my first horse who I had for 21 years, he would play and not want to be caught but he was playng as easily caught. We all have our problems with our horses mine is new from last September, and because I treat her with respect she takes the mick, my system is softly softly catchee monkey as the saying goes suddendly will get there as will you just keep tryng and suddendly wow.

Gypsy Gold does not chink & glitter.It gleams in the sun and neighs in the dark.Tonka & Lara my beautiful horses RIP, Nelson,Chloe & Kitty the cats.

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greyandbay

Joined:

Mar 10

Posts: 3413

greyandbay says:

Re: Catching a moody mare!

Both Rio 186 and pippixox have the right ideas, so I'd try one idea first and if it doesn't work do the other - good luck !!

The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man - Winston Churchill

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