List of things your horse DIDN'T spook at?

fattylumpkin

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I'm sitting here pondering some of the deeper mysteries of the equine brain after our ride yesterday! I think our run of spring spookiness is coming to an end. For weeks my horse has been randomly terrified of pretty much anything and everything, including developing a terror phobia of spray bottles and a small baby pink sponge.

But here is the list of things she didn't spook at yesterday:

-Mountain biker in neon green taking a colossal nose dive after hitting a pothole
-Floating plastic bag that wafted under her feet
-A JAS fighter jet breaking the sound barrier

The jet was so loud I thought a bomb had been dropped! I felt it in my chest and all the trees rustled like crazy, but the only reaction my mare was to stop, prick her ears and gaze vaguely into the distance. In the news that evening they reported that the boom was so loud it was heard 3 counties away and hundreds of people had called the police, but it didn't merit a spook apparently!

Anybody else experiencing signs that spring madness is finally coming to an end?
 

The Fuzzy Furry

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I have the reverse problems with CF :rolleyes3:

eg: Case 1. A truck load of dumped household stuff beside our track - CF wants to potter over to inspect (was he a vagrant bin-rustling-food thief in the past?) Other 2 horses with me both keep well away & give wary snorts....
Case 2. Bags of garden rubbish dumped on another part of our hack routes, CF pulls hard on the reins & when I relax them off, beetles straight over to try to lift the 1st sack.

Poor skinny (NOT!) CF having to rummage in spooky rubbish..... :biggrin3:
 

sparklypickle

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Yesterday pony didn't spook at
1. Bucket of water thrown on the ground near her
2.Jingling bridle waved in front of her face
But did flip out at....her shadow...
 

misskk88

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I'm sitting here pondering some of the deeper mysteries of the equine brain after our ride yesterday! I think our run of spring spookiness is coming to an end. For weeks my horse has been randomly terrified of pretty much anything and everything, including developing a terror phobia of spray bottles and a small baby pink sponge.

But here is the list of things she didn't spook at yesterday:

-Mountain biker in neon green taking a colossal nose dive after hitting a pothole
-Floating plastic bag that wafted under her feet
-A JAS fighter jet breaking the sound barrier

The jet was so loud I thought a bomb had been dropped! I felt it in my chest and all the trees rustled like crazy, but the only reaction my mare was to stop, prick her ears and gaze vaguely into the distance. In the news that evening they reported that the boom was so loud it was heard 3 counties away and hundreds of people had called the police, but it didn't merit a spook apparently!

Anybody else experiencing signs that spring madness is finally coming to an end?

We live near an RAF base and although the planes have an area they are meant to stick to flying over, they still overshoot and end up flying INCREDIBLY close to the stables. Horse and riders are so use to it they don't even flinch. I had someone trying my girl for loan the other week, I hadn't even registered the plane and they were shocked she didnt even flick an ear at it.

We'd also had a kids games day one weekend and a water bucket sat on the mountain block full of plastic toys and balls. It was windy and as I stood talking to someone, the whole thing flipped over, spilling around my mares feet. They made a hell of a noise on the concrete, rolling everywhere. All she cared about was if they were edible.

Saying that, the pigeon the other day was a horse killer, quite obviously.... :D
 

chestnut cob

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OK... yesterday I took mine up to the gallops. It's about a 40 min hack there, work on the gallops, then hack home. He's pretty fit but you'd expect him to at least be tired on the way home...

We DIDN'T spook at:
- Cyclists, lots of cyclists (he is normally a bit freaked out by them, despite all the cyclists by us being great with horses on the road). And mountain bikers.
- Tractors we had to pass close to (also something that normally bothers him)
- Several horseboxes passing us, again quite close, on tiny country lanes including air brakes hissing
- Cows peering at him from hedges
- Tractor whizzing up and down the field next to the gallops while we were working up there, so only several metres away

What he DID spook at:
- A sheep, who had the audacity to *look* at him from inside its field as we walked past
- Plants with big leaves
- Grass on the verge as we walked home
- Having his fly mask put on
 

dogatemysalad

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Low flying overhead helicopters, kids bouncing on trampolines behind a hedge, bin lorry tipping and crushing refuse, ambulance sirens, person throwing a glass out of a car, finding ourselves in the midst of a change over at a triathlon event, barking dogs running out of farm and biting horses tail, bull serving cows in a field, loose colt chasing my mare across a field, swarm of bees from a hive surrounding us, Wheel barrow falling from a moving flatbed trailer onto the road, etc etc..

However, some purple flowers blooming on a brick wall did cause some consternation. :eek::D:D
 

Supertrooper

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On one hack down a narrow country road......

A car plus caravan
A huge tractor
A artic lorry blocking the road

And best of all, I nearly had kittens when I saw it..... A car pulling a trailer with a massive speed boat on it.


He did however spook at a different coloured bush ;-)
 

Houndman

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My horse doesn't spook at close proximity shotgun blasts and bird scarers, quad bikes, motorbikes etc. This is because the farm he spent his early years on had loads of these. There was always pigeon shooting going on in the adjacent field and a bird scarer and as a youngster he just got used to it. Out hunting in March we were riding along a hedge and a bird scarer went off. My horse flinched a little but kept going whereas the other horses that I was with spooked badly. Would probably have made a good cavalry horse.
 

WindyStacks

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Mountain bike race meaning we had to go under police tape - nada. 4 apache helicopters going directly overhead from military base 200m away - nothing. String of thelwell style ponies with toddlers on board - utterly terrifying.
 

thewonderhorse

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An air ambulance that landed in the field the other day following an RTA next to the field. The chap was fine thank god.

However he spooked at a plastic tub I had outside his stable.

Dimwit.
 

JFTDWS

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Mine has been utterly chilled about the air ambulance landing, fire engines on narrow country rounds with sirens going (they did stop them when they saw us!), has used flat bed agricultural trailers as climbing frames, and god knows what else. He's had deer jump across his nose on tracks, a whole race of cyclists cut him up, dogs jump up and bite his nose...

He nearly had me in the warm up yesterday because a tiny bird flew up outside the arena...
 

Houndman

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My horse does spook at rustling papers sometimes. I do use that to my advantage sometimes when he is being stubborn and get a paper out of my pocket and rustle it behind his head to make him cross a stream or wake him up. Soon he will work it out I guess and stop being bothered.
 

millikins

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We ARE the small pony, complete with cart and quite frequently cause issues! I always stop and ask if riders want me to pass them or let them get their horse past us. On a drive year or so back, we met skip lorries, a train, local pub having a beer festival complete with marquee, generator, music etc, a Unimog towing a rattling, clanking trailer of logs, didn't bat an eyelid. On way home, there were two white ducks on the grass verge, she was across the road, up the kerb....
 

frostyfingers

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Years ago I took my 12.2 Welshie to do pony rides at the local fete. The organisers had arranged for a large heavy horse to pull a dray for rides too and thought it would be great to have photo of little pony and huge horse together.....Nothing on earth would persuade him to stand next to the horse and in the end we had to do the rides in a separate field as he kept looking around for this giant animal!

My current horse is a random spooker - sometimes things are totally ignorable, others they are utterly terrifying. His general rule appears to be that if it's big, loud, mechanical and whirling it's fine - hedge cutters, dustbin lorries, tanks (there's a parked one near us), tractors are all absolutely fine but holes in the road, puddles, different colour tarmac, white paint, fluttery leaves and clumps of grass that were definitely not there yesterday are all worthy of a good sideways leap at the very least, or a stop dead, snort and whirl round. He's pretty wary of walkers in rustly clothes and ramblers and cyclists are the work of the devil - even if they are coming towards them and he can see them he tries to run away. It gets very wearing sometimes.
 

MiJodsR2BlinkinTite

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Yesterday aft out hacking we kept meeting huge green tractor-dragons hauling silage back to the farm; there were four of them in total, all going to and fro the field and we just kept meeting each other and then the whole thing got hilarious and we all ended up just smiling and waving........ it was fantastic, and a big Thank You to the farmer and his contractors/workmen who were obviously rushed and trying to get everything in before today's rain; yet still managed to keep in good humour! Horses didn't turn a hair or a whisker at huge great dragons heaving past them and us having to squish into tiny gateways.

But these are the sort of horses that can deal with all that, plus some, and then spook if a butterfly flitters up under their backsides! Daft things. That's horses for you.
 

mairiwick

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On our hack on Saturday, we rode past yapping dogs, small excited children and a huge field sprayer with no issues.
The jogger behind us however, was obviously a hit man out to get us...
 

Archangel

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1. Randon people hiding in the bracken and then jumping up wearing huge wooden masks. Horse was fine, I nearly had a heart attack.

2. Just sitting on my young mare for the first time in the school, someone unloads a bumper car and throws a load of chains on the roof. Then a few minutes later, lorry backs up and empties a load of gravel, terrible noise and scary as the back tipped up. Mare jumped a little but was fine.

3. Full sister of the above mare, her first hack out after being backed and all by herself. Bridleway is in a hollow behind houses. A bonfire has got out of control and as we approach spreads down the bank - not a huge fire but smoke and flames at head height. The cows in the adjoining field have come over to investigate and bust out over the fence and we now have loose cows, newly backed horse, a fire and now people on the bank. Horse just took it all in her stride. Amazing.

Then just to show how fragile they are... sire of horse 2 and 3. Someone gave me a kettle as I was leading him, I momentarily put it in the hand carrying the rope - he sniffed it, spooked, slipped and flipped over backwards (he was OK)
 

pansymouse

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I rode through a pre mobilisation exercise on Salisbury Plain complete with camo nets, tents, tanks, tanks with camo net over them, soldiers with guns and branches in their hats, generators; the works - not a twitch. Then she spotted some grass that was a slighter darker shade of green and launched into a massive hissy fit.
 

alainax

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Didn't spook at -

Kamakaze grouse who hide in the bushes waiting to pouce, - flap dart and run out in front of you.

Did spook at - A log.

Go figure :p
 

PolarSkye

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Flappy plastic bags (just wants to put his head in them to see if they contain anything edible), large tarpaulins (will walk over and/or past those), men felling trees (right next to the school), hot air balloons, dogs hanging off his tail/chasing him/walking underneath his belly, baby buggies, umbrellas, footballs in his field, man on pogo stick bouncing up and down right next to him . . . none of these have worried him.

P
 

StormyMoments

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Rio is actually very good the majority of the time he didn't spook at -
A road sweeper that was sweeping the path - we just walked on by.
A hot air balloon landing on the common about 50 yards from where we were riding.
Freight train going past about 5 steps away from us
A car accident involving 3 cars about 200yards behind us
Kids playing basket ball
A tank charging up behind us

However... he threw a fit about his water bucket having moved in his stable... took 20 minutes to get him in the stable and then he stood there snorting like a dragon, quivering at the back of his box and then there was a sudden noise and then he was trying to climb the back wall... I think if he could get more than his head out of the back window he would have climbed out.
 

Woolly Hat n Wellies

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My games pony used to be an angel with almost everything. She was an expert at a race which involved popping a balloon with a pin on the end of a stick, pretty much under her feet. She wouldn't flinch. Rocks in gateways and larger than average leaves, however....
 

LessThanPerfect

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I rode through a pre mobilisation exercise on Salisbury Plain complete with camo nets, tents, tanks, tanks with camo net over them, soldiers with guns and branches in their hats, generators; the works - not a twitch. Then she spotted some grass that was a slighter darker shade of green and launched into a massive hissy fit.

Just out of interest, I have an old sepia photo of my grandfather taken on Salisbury Plain in 1916 when he was conscripted for WWI in full cavalry uniform on a lovely army horse. Whenever I feel I'm losing my confidence in riding I look at it and tell myself that if he was brave enough to ride a horse in a battle I can do whatever it is I'm worrying about.
 

w1bbler

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Full size inflatable tank bobbing around on its guy ropes in a Dartmoor gale, fine, huge vehicles fine, rock dropped out of the dry stone wall = major panick attack.
 

Tiddlypom

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Oh and the low flying Vulcan bomber didn't even make him lift his head up from eating ;-)
Haha, we've been buzzed by the low flying Vulcan bomber too, during a lesson! (Think there's only one airworthy Vulcan left, so presume it's the same one). My instructor had the heebie jeebies, and kept stopping the lesson, but the Vulcan kept coming back (it was doing a display nearby). Cob wasn't bothered at all, though the noise was so loud that we couldn't hear ourselves shout.

More recently I set up a spook busting session in the arena. Cob strolled over the tarpaulin, tried to nibble the Union Jack flag, gently sidestepped the flapping bunting but had a meltdown when he spotted the wheelbarrow in An Unusual Place just outside the arena fence! So I gave him his educational spook busting session, but could have saved myself the trouble of putting all the fancy kit out, and just moved the wheelbarrow!
 

becca1305

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Big baby ginge didn't spook at...having her buddies roaming round in the field next to the arena for the first time whilst she was ridden, but did spook at her OWN FART! :D :D
 
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