Driven before? esp Irish peeps.

scruffyponies

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So, fatty cob apparently came over from Ireland as a 4yo. He has only been ridden (to my knowledge) in the UK. Now in his late teens.
Yesterday I put a harness on him, long reined him in blinkers, and ran a cart up behind him to check fit - frankly I was surprised I could get him between the shafts.

He was totally phlegmatic about the whole business, long reined well, and stood on 3 legs with the cart on him whilst I had a chat with someone.

He's a good egg, and wouldn't be the first to take it well. He's also built like a tank, really short backed, and if he were a 2 or 3yo in my yard, I would have had him in harness from word go.

What's the chances he was driven in Ireland as a youngster, do you think?
 

scruffyponies

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It is a possibility but I would still run him through the drag a tyre ect before putting to.
I should have said, it won't change what I do with him. I did once put a horse to and drive away that 'has been driven before' to find out when it became obvious how green he was that he had only had harness tried on in the yard . I was lucky!
 

The Xmas Furry

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It is a possibility but I would still run him through the drag a tyre ect before putting to.
Definitely this!
We had one in many years ago who was ridden. Had heard he had been in harness previously but no info more. Owner after 3 years decided to put harness on, long reined neddy for a week, then put him to. All absolutely fine.... till she asked for a turn and he went batshit and kicked himself out of the cart and buggered off. After more digging, it transpired he had indeed been driven but had an accident and was sold as a riding animal only.
Tread carefully!
 

scruffyponies

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I have also had the other way... little pony we 'broke' to drive. All went well. Learned many years later that he had been trotted up and down a racing yard in a cart when he was a youngster, as he was being broken for the owner's young child and nobody was small enough to ride him.

I break everything we have to drive, figuring it might one day make a difference to their future. Most take to it easily enough, and it's not that unusual to not be able to tell whether they have done it before!
 

Auslander

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If I hadn't had Ivan the Terrible since he was 2, I'd swear he'd been driven before. He was completely accepting of the harness, dragging stuff around, stuff touching his sides, and the cart. The only sticking point we've experienced is his Shitlandish temperament - he gets stroppy when he's had enough ("Had enough" can be anywhere from 30 secs to half an hour into his sessions!). He was exactly the same when we backed him to ride. I don't trust the little stinker an inch, but it's not because he's green, it's because he's a b*gger!
Some of them are just "born broke"
 

Mrs Jingle

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It is very possible he has been driven, but probably not much more likelihood than if he originated from the UK. I would proceed with caution, but sounds like you might just have struck gold with one of those who just takes it all in his stride without so much as a buck or a fart. Good luck!
 
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