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Bad Attitude :(

turn&burn92

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Hi guys,

I have a 5 year old gelding and I have had him for about 2 years now. I got him and he was a real sweetheart. Great horse. Good looking. Did anything I asked, and so far trained very well. In the past year I haven't been able to ride much. School, job, etc. Anyways, I have recently been working with him again and realized that he has developed a few bad habits. It's a little bit like he forgot how to be ridden. He will sling his head when I turn him, I will ask him to go forward and he will go backwards, things of that nature. I can handle those issues, no problem. But, over the past month or two he has just had a real edgy attitude. Like I will go to catch him and he will nip at me, or I will lounge-line him and he will spin around and kick, pull at the lead rope and try to get away. He has accomplised getting away a time or two by giving that sudden jerk that just pulls the rope clean out of my hand, rope burns and all. He is a real big horse, (16 hands, and roughly 1250lbs). I'm not a very big person and at times he can be very intimidating. I was wondering if anyone has any ideas on some attitude adjusments or excercises that might burn down some energy, and make him more apt to listen? Any suggestions are VERY MUCH APPRICIATED!!! :nod:

Thanks, Kate.

Thanks, Kate.
 

Pickles Dillman

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Hey There T&B! :tiphat:
You are very welcome to call me. I have a hard time explaining what I am trying to say in writing. I deal with these things on a daily basis. You can take a look at my web-site and get my phone number from there.
Talk to ya later, Pic Dillman
http://www.dillmantrainingcenter.com
 

kscowboy

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pasture bound , herd bound , at 5 years old probably still immature , need to reteach , reinforce the lessons he already learned but may have forgot. Don't get impatient with him , assume he has forgotten and reteach and extend the time in the round pen. Might start off leads and work him until the piss and vinegar wear off then begin on lead with basics , have a plan on what you want to work on each session and do only that , on each successive session repeat all past lessons to reinforce those. sounds like he needs to learn how to work again. you don't mention the breed but some mature later than others and need to relearn each season.
 

turn&burn92

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He is a Harlan Bred Quarter Horse. That pretty much means that he's bigger than most Quarter Horses. Anyways, I love this horse to death, but with his attitude I have considered selling. I am a barrel racer and I bought him started, planning to finish him the same year. I bought him in late summer/ early fall and rode everyday until it got cold and I couldn't stand it anymore. Then by spring he had developed these attitude issues and I knew it, but never had time to work on them. Now I have more time and it's gotten worse and now I am stumped on how to approach them.

Thanks, Kate
 

turn&burn92

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Here are a few pics of him... enjoy! :)


Camera date is wrong, this was in february and the saddle is my biggest barrel saddle and on him it looks tiny...


Me riding him one day with one of my friends (she took the picture)


Small I know, but the black horse is 16.2 hands and around 1250lbs to compare the size and the black one has the uphill advantage...


Me leading him up to the barn...

These are about 6 months old... I will have to take and post new ones... you wouldn't think he would grow in 6 months but the grass has muscled him up quite a bit...
 

cowwrangler

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he is a nice looking horse,hopefully he gets straighted out,bring him over i will take him :nod: :nod:
 

turn&burn92

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:lol: Thanks. I have decided to ride the mess out of him... I'm going to take him to a few rodeos and to the National Championship Chuckwagon Races this year... that should be good for him... I am just wonderin if there are some ways to get him tired and willing to listen to me.
 

chippie

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Let's look at your time line.

He is 5 years old and you bought him 3 years ago as a 2 year old. He was started in barrels and you hoped to finish him that year.

I think that you need to slow down. It sounds like you may have burned him out. He had a break and now decided that he doesn't like his job. Go back to basics and forget about the barrels for a while.

Work him on the ground in a round pen where he can't get away from you. You need his respect when you are on the ground because if he does not respect you there, he won't respect you when you are on his back.

Take it slow back to basics as suggested. Be sure that he knows his leads, knows how to go slow and speed up when asked, then slow down again - work on your transitions. Teach him to move off of your leg and two-track. Work on flying lead changes by doing figure 8's and serpentines out in the pasture.
Get him listening and his mind working on what you are asking him to do.

When you are ready to move onto working on barrels, practice turning around one barrel - slowly, moving him into the pocket with your legs.

When you practice the pattern. Don't run it all of the time and only practice it a time or two. Horses love to run. When you make it become boring work where they get tired, and you keep repeating the pattern, they quit and become sour.

It takes years to make a good barrel horse. Many professional barrel racers do not ask for real speed until all of the basics are solid which may take several years. A winning barrel horse is not made overnight.

Check into Cherry Hill's 101 Exercises for the Arena. It is a good book and will give you a lesson plan to teach your horse the basics. Good luck. He is a handsome horse.

PS. Get his teeth checked - he may have points or caps that need to come off. Recheck your saddle fit. He has probably filled out and your saddle may no longer fit.
 

turn&burn92

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He loves his job.. the few rodeo's I have taken him to we place in the top 5... the main trouble is at home... he's a different horse at the rodeo's... it's just workin at home where I hit trouble. Thanks for the input!! :nod: :cboy: You had some very good points...
 

peg4x4

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He's got a TOOTHACHE!!! Go to the vet,get his teeth checked.. Beautiful horse
 

msscamp

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turn&burn92":2qzxi4lf said:
I am just wonderin if there are some ways to get him tired and willing to listen to me.

Sure there are. Do you have any plowed fields nearby? Trot him up and down the summer fallow. After about 3 rounds, he will be sweating and way more willing to listen - after 5 or 6 rounds, he will be even more amenable(sp?). If no summer fallow, any sand draws or sandy patches? Sand will do the same thing. If neither are available, start him out at a trot and ride the kinks out, then kick him up to a brisk lope for a few miles. Wet saddle blankets are a key factor in a horse's willingness to listen.
 

turn&burn92

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I don't have any plowed fields... just a round pen and wide open fields... thanks, that's what I am working him on now... long roads and wet saddle blankets!
 

turn&burn92

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Okay to clear things up, I bought him as a 3 year old, started. I have owned him for 2 years, and he's 5. I am not sure if thats what I put, but if it was, I apologize. He was turned out for 1 year, not 3. And that was simply because school and a job to buy his feed, got in the way. I am now fixed and in a better situation and I can afford to train and rodeo like I wanted to. The basics are covered and he's ben worked to death on them in the last few weeks. I'm not trying to "make a barrel horse overnight", I have barrel raced and rodeoed with my older sister for 15 years now, and I am aware that the greats of the sport are not trained overnight. I am trying to be very patient with him and keep in mind that he's still young. I am just looking for ideas, opinions, etc.

Thanks, Kate.
 

Just_a_girl

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He's probably just been enjoying the pasture and his buddies for too long.....If he's buddied up with another horse or he's learning bad habits from another then I would separate them for awhile. Wet blankets, exposure, ride, ride, and more riding, and patients will be your best bet....but it sounds like you already know that. ;-) Let us know how he does.

good luck.
 

talldog

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chippie":2igoc7hx said:
Let's look at your time line.

He is 5 years old and you bought him 3 years ago as a 2 year old. He was started in barrels and you hoped to finish him that year.

I think that you need to slow down. It sounds like you may have burned him out. He had a break and now decided that he doesn't like his job. Go back to basics and forget about the barrels for a while.

Work him on the ground in a round pen where he can't get away from you. You need his respect when you are on the ground because if he does not respect you there, he won't respect you when you are on his back.

Take it slow back to basics as suggested. Be sure that he knows his leads, knows how to go slow and speed up when asked, then slow down again - work on your transitions. Teach him to move off of your leg and two-track. Work on flying lead changes by doing figure 8's and serpentines out in the pasture.
Get him listening and his mind working on what you are asking him to do.

When you are ready to move onto working on barrels, practice turning around one barrel - slowly, moving him into the pocket with your legs.

When you practice the pattern. Don't run it all of the time and only practice it a time or two. Horses love to run. When you make it become boring work where they get tired, and you keep repeating the pattern, they quit and become sour.

It takes years to make a good barrel horse. Many professional barrel racers do not ask for real speed until all of the basics are solid which may take several years. A winning barrel horse is not made overnight.

Check into Cherry Hill's 101 Exercises for the Arena. It is a good book and will give you a lesson plan to teach your horse the basics. Good luck. He is a handsome horse.

PS. Get his teeth checked - he may have points or caps that need to come off. Recheck your saddle fit. He has probably filled out and your saddle may no longer fit.
Great Advice--- That's what we do down South !!! :tiphat:
 
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I know I'm probably going to get shot down for saying this, so please be kind. If you don't agree, thats fine. For your gelding, have you tried any type of bodywork? Such as massage, chiro., Equine Touch etc? Your gelding is still figuring out his body and getting more muscles tuned up and toned up. He honestly sounds like he's painful, nipping at you in pasture and such. I would very much recommend some bodywork. Just like us people, horses work very hard too and sometimes their discomfort shows differently than humans. They obviously have no voice to talk so body language is their way to get it across. Try some massage first and perhaps then some chiro. They work great hand in hand, and I would bet money his attitude would change! Best of luck with your horse!!
 

turn&burn92

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I have tried chiro and it works sometimes... sometimes it doesnt. it just depends. Also, I have sent him to a professional trainer and he's doing amazing. He's being trained for barrel racing and pole bending. He's just loving it! The trainer says he's one of the best horses he's ever had to train. He says he's so calm that you'd think he's 30! He just needed more riding time than I had to give him, as far as training goes. Now that I am steadily working and am freed up on my weekends and afternoons, when I get him back in a month or so I will be working with him everyday. Anyway, just giving an update! Thanks for all the advice! :tiphat:
 

warpaint

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Allsparksowner":3j89tnjt said:
I know I'm probably going to get shot down for saying this, so please be kind. If you don't agree, thats fine. For your gelding, have you tried any type of bodywork? Such as massage, chiro., Equine Touch etc? Your gelding is still figuring out his body and getting more muscles tuned up and toned up. He honestly sounds like he's painful, nipping at you in pasture and such. I would very much recommend some bodywork. Just like us people, horses work very hard too and sometimes their discomfort shows differently than humans. They obviously have no voice to talk so body language is their way to get it across. Try some massage first and perhaps then some chiro. They work great hand in hand, and I would bet money his attitude would change! Best of luck with your horse!!

You have every right to your opinion but,

I believe there has been alot better advice given than touchy, feely.
 

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