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I am hoping someone can help me out with my problem with my horse. I have been riding for almost 30 years and have never experienced this problem. I have a 7 year old gelding who is super smart. Last summer he developed a habit that I can't seem to figure out how to stop. He loves to go out riding, loves to go exploring, loves to have a job. My problem is that when I turn around to come home he doesn't want to go. He has a small little fit ( a little rear) and then locks up his legs and won't move. I have tried turning him tight circles but he will almost tip over instead. I hold his head right tight to my foot but he doesn't care he'll leave it there for many minutes withouth even changing his facial expression. I have used a crop and get nothing from him. He stands firmly in place and won't move. His back leg just relaxes and he just stays put. My friend who rides with me comes up beside me an pulls on the reins and he'll finally move but only a few steps an then he locks up again. If I can finally get him turned around to go back out he is then fine. I have tried riding him in different places but he knows the turn to the point when we are heading home and this all starts again. He doesn't care if my friend rides off and leaves us alone either. He loves our barn, gets lots of attention and food there and has 3 other barn mates that he loves so it isn't like he hates to go home becuase it is a horrible place. I am at a loss as to what to do. My next effort is to just let him stand (even though he'll stand there for 15 mins and then take 2 steps and it starts all over again) but I feel like perhaps I'll just have to do this over and over and perhaps he'll get bored and stop this habit. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! UPDATE: Just wanted to let you all know that my boy has taken a turn for the better. I caved and tried to use spurs. Although I didn't want to I felt it was my only option and it works great. Just had to use them gently but it was enough to get his attention and earn the respect I needed from him. Thanks to everyone for all of your suggestions. I really appreciate it!!!!
Hi All, After tons of you guys help I finally bought a horse! She is a Peruvian Paso and her gait agrees wonderfully with my neck and back. So excited:) We went on our first trail ride at home and she was great. Didn't spook at anything, tore right through the thick spots in the trail, she picks out the best places for her and her rider, she would gait really fast and smooth out in front of my sisters QH mare but when they wanted to go slow I would put her behind and she would drop down to a slow comfortable walk. We do have a few issues. One of which she isn't used to the mounting block so she wants to walk off or step to the side, another thing she does is once I am on she wants to bolt forward. Kinda crazy but she flexes so I just pull her around and she stops. I think these will be easy fixes with a little work. I have been following Warwick Schiller on Youtube and just love his methods. Another problem is she was a rescue and had apparently been abused. She is not too keen on new people but warms up nicely, she REALLY doesn't like men and absolutely hates the farrier who last trimmed her. Apparently they had a bad time of it and the lady just stopped picking up her feet for fear she would freak out on her like she did with the farrier. We've been working with her and I think she will get better. Just a few minutes of working with her before her vet check and the vet was able to do full flexion and hoof sensitivity tests on her with out too much of a fuss. Luckily the vet was a lady:) One thing is she is never aggressive about anything. If she does anything its away from you and not in a threatening way... you can tell she is just scared sometimes. Now on the trail was a whole other matter...lol... she was scared of nothing! I have enclosed a few pics. As you can tell she is a bit chunky! She was out on 35 acres of grass. The vet says Puruvians are prone to metabolic syndrome? I think. So she says the best thing is no grass or limited amounts... which is great considering thats exactly what we have... no grass...lol. I am going to post a few questions in other topics but if your here and not there here they are. Gaited Saddles? Opinions? I ride in an Aussie and I think she definitely gaited better in it than she did in a western saddle they were riding her with. Peruvian Bits? Opinions? They were riding her in a shanked snaffle with copper rollers. I have her in a shanked dog bone type bit that is thick. The chomps on it the whole ride but seems to respond well to it. I am wondering if getting an actual bit made for peruvians will help with her gait or be easier on her mouth? I am really not sure beside the obvious...ie gag bit.... what denotes making a bit harsh or soft.... i want to use the mildest thing on her I can. Grain and Hay? Right now she is on freshly baled Rye Grass Hay with a bit of hairy vetch in it and a tiny bit of 12% sweet feed at night. They get hay twice a day not free choice. I am thinking maybe she should have less sugar in her diet but not sure which direction to go in. We won't have bermuda hay for a few months now. Peruvians? Any experience with the breed? Thoughts? She isn't papered and I don't know how the registries work... if I breed her to a periuvian down the road can i register the baby? what about breeding her to a TWH and registering the baby Tennuvian? possible if she is not papered? What I really want to do is one day breed her to a shuffling appaloosa:) They seem to have similar gates and I love the spots! (If you can tell in one of the pics she actually has quite a bit of roaning on one of her hind quarters.) The first two pics are from the first day I rode her.... the last pic is after we got her home.
So I am riding my new Peruvian in a dog bone type bit with a copper roller. She direct reins or neck reins. I prefer to direct rein for the most part as I have a bulging disk in my neck that prefers equal balance in my shoulders. Should I be riding her with just a plain o ring snaffle? I am a little worried about not having a curb chain, should i be? What about bits specifically for Peruvian horses? I want to ride her in the best thing for her and her mouth. She flexs really well and is pretty light in the mouth but out of practice... I don't want to do anything to harden her up.
So... I haven't been on here in ages... been caught up in life, and I'm finally stuck. I need help. I can't figure this one out for the life of me, and have finally opted to asking others for some help and ideas! I’m just plum out of them. Everything I’ve ever done to help this issue just isn't working. I'm willing to take consideration on any and all ideas... I’m officially stuck with this mare. About the mare: She's coming 5 She is green broke She's extremely light, and responsive. Does excellent in the arena no issues.. Practically bombproof on the ground and in the arena Has been desensitized to a ton of stuff.. And doesn't spook at anything around the barn/farm/arena/anything as long as she's not under saddle. My problem: She has developed a nasty spooky habit ONLY on the trail.... History: About a year ago, we were trail riding down a familiar trail, just new direction. We've gone down it before, just never as far as we had gone.. So I guess to her it was a pretty new trail. We had another, experienced trail horse with us.. One who's not spooky at all. And Up until this day this filly didn't spook at ANYTHING on the trail. It didn't matter if it was birds in the brush, dogs, ducks.. She didn't bat an eye. Well I was riding on a confidence high and stopped paying attention (I know my mistake) and was taking pictures playing on my camera, and didn't realize a small flock of ducks off to the side of the trail in a creek. By the time I realized them they had started to take off out of the water, and this mare LOST it. She flipped a lid. Normally I would have had no issue handling the spook but I wasn't paying attention. She did a 180 and bolted and tried to save my seat but it came to bailing or landing on a fence and busting ribs and possible other painful things.. So I bailed. (This is not the first time this mare has had a rider come off) The other mare spooked when we spooked (we made quiet the ruckus). After I came off... and we got her caught.. I did get back on. We didn't particularly finish our trail ride (which makes me think this is part of the problem) but we did keep riding. Since this day... her spooks are awful out on the trail.. They are 90*- 180* litterly in one- two steps and she tries to bolt. Now I haven't come off since, because I’m aware of the issue and pay attention the entire ride. I am able to get her under control before she bolts but she's litterly terrified and it takes a good 10-15 minutes to get her to where we can go on and then she's hyped up and nervous the rest of the ride. ANYTHING will trigger this and I haven't noticed any warning signs. She doesn't get ancy, any more alert than she already is or isn't. It’s just a sudden thing as far as I am aware. Now I have taken her back to the area she spooked at, on the ground. We have done a ton of trail desensitization on the ground. I've ponied her out on the trail. AT first she spooked a bit but now she doesn't bat an eye. But it’s anytime someone is in the saddle it’s like she's a completely different mare out on the trail. I don't allow ANYONE else to ride her on the trail because if you’re not experienced you will be dumped if she does this, and I don't want anyone to get hurt. At first I didn't keep her busy on the trail hoping the more we did it she'd get over it.. Didn’t work.. I tried keeping her feet busy on the trail and her mind on something other than her surroundings.. That didn't work. I just don't know what to do anymore. She was an amazing trail horse and now I’m afraid she'll never be trail worthy again because of the danger she could be to herself and the rider. I feel like she has lost her trust in me as a rider, and in riders in general.. And I don't know how to get it back.