Professionally broken horse any problems?

LR2904

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So eventually got my horse booked in for breaking, just wondered has anyone ever had any problems with a professionally broken horse once they get it home or take it out hacking?!
 
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So eventually got my horse booked in for breaking, just wondered has anyone ever had any problems with a professionally broken horse once they get it home or take it out hacking?!
I expect there will be a few!!!
Like the one from the lady whose rather smart cob is living a life of luxury 'cos it is unbreakable!
 

Spook

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A professional "breaker and breaker" can usually ride a horse they have trained...... there is absolutely no guarantee that the average punter will be able to do so..

If you have a horse away for backing ..... before you take it home ....see it ridden by the professional then ride it yourself..... job done.

Problems arising thereafter are down to the "nagsman"
 

sandi_84

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Do lots of unannounced visits and announced visits to see what they are doing, unannounced being the most important ones imo because people will pull out all the stops to make you think they are doing on a regular basis what you are seeing but may in fact not be.
 
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I am not sure that I would make too many unannounced visits, what if it is standing inside, it might have been exercised or might be waiting.
I backed mine but sent him for schooling for three weeks, went in to detail exactly how many hours per week my horse would get [6] and how much turnout [daily], also asked for a male rider occasionally too as there was one available.
I provided an extra couple of bales of shavings as I am a bit fussy!
One thing may not be clear, you will not necessarily get back a well schooled quiet horse suited to your riding ability........... when buying an unbacked horse you are taking a risk that he will suit you, one person's sensible hack is another persons plod, and a spirited horse may be ideal for one person, and too much horse for another.
 
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sandi_84

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I am not sure that I would make too many unannounced visits, what if it is standing inside, it might have been exercised or might be waiting.
I backed mine but sent him for schooling for three weeks, went in to detail exactly how many hours per week my horse would get [6] and how much turnout [daily], also asked for a male rider occasionally too as there was one available.
I provided an extra couple of bales of shavings as I am a bit fussy!
One thing may not be clear, you will not necessarily get back a well schooled quiet horse suited to your riding ability........... when buying an unbacked horse you are taking a risk that he will suit you, one person's sensible hack is another persons plod, and a spirited horse may be ideal for one person, and too much horse for another.
IME unannounced visits can show up a lot of dodgy dealings though too, what if it's just been turned out for weeks and only dragged in for riding when you show up for an announced visit? What if it is being treated roughly during the backing process?
I'm not saying go up every day but do make the effort to go up unannounced every now and then, personally I'd rather do this than just drop the horse off and hope. Even going by reputation sometimes isn't enough I'm afraid.
 

EstherYoung

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I spent a few days a week with Wolf when he went to borstal. They were quite happy with this, indeed they encouraged it. At the end of they day, as they said, they weren't meant to be training him to be ridden by them, they were training him to be ridden by me. It meant I came home knowing exactly what he'd learnt and also I'd had some refresher sessions myself on their other horses.
 

Spook

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When we were taking horses in for breaking we would not have minded the occasional unannounced visit towards the end of the process...... but just sometimes when the shi t hits the fan with a young horse and sometimes it does!!!!! they go careering and bucking about...... and generally just doing what they sometimes do and this frightens the owner, it is perfectly normal for young unbroken horses to do this, they don't all but some do. Oh and what ever you do don't call in at ridiculous times unannounced....... we once sent one home because we were sick of our evenings being disturbed by an inconsiderate client. And if you do want to see it worked do make an appointment.
 

brucea

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Sorry. I've seen a few young horses quite damaged by being sent away to be "professionally broken" - they certainly came back "broken".

You need to be and stay very close to the process.

We backed our own youngster. It's really not as hard as you think. All we did was walk out in hand for a month, then rode with young cob on lead between two mature horses so he could experience us above him and get accustomed to "this is what is expected, being ridden is what grown up horses do". One day we offered to saddle him, after saddling the other two. he was almost bursting with pride at having a saddle on and being like the other big guys. We did a lot more hacking just saddled and then one day got to the mounting block and got on.

Bit of "Oh...someone's on my back" and one skip step, but then we led out with one ridden companion horse and someone on the ground walking along with him for a few weeks. Then he went solo on hacks.

Lots of groundwork to reinforce. He was backed in a Parelli hackamore, not a bit and bridle and was really happy with this.

It takes time and patience to get a calm positive result.
 

paullam9

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When I used to break clients horses in we always asked then to spend the last two weeks with us when working their horse. So they could see it go, how we rode it and to make sure they could ride it and be happy to take it home and hop on. Just make sure you tell them what you want.

We had one lady that wanted the basic package so she and the horse could learn together. So when it left us it could walk, trot, canter and pop a small fence. Nothing fancy as that's what she wanted. She took it home rode it for a few weeks then sent it off to be " schooled ". Well it's been about 4 years and she's rode it 3 times since it's first and second "schooling".

The horse now knows more than the owner and has leaned all these nice tricks so the owner can't ride her. My advice. Make sure you no what you are getting back.
 

Spook

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Sorry. I've seen a few young horses quite damaged by being sent away to be "professionally broken" - they certainly came back "broken".

You need to be and stay very close to the process.

We backed our own youngster. It's really not as hard as you think. All we did was walk out in hand for a month, then rode with young cob on lead between two mature horses so he could experience us above him and get accustomed to "this is what is expected, being ridden is what grown up horses do". One day we offered to saddle him, after saddling the other two. he was almost bursting with pride at having a saddle on and being like the other big guys. We did a lot more hacking just saddled and then one day got to the mounting block and got on.

Bit of "Oh...someone's on my back" and one skip step, but then we led out with one ridden companion horse and someone on the ground walking along with him for a few weeks. Then he went solo on hacks.

Lots of groundwork to reinforce. He was backed in a Parelli hackamore, not a bit and bridle and was really happy with this.

It takes time and patience to get a calm positive result.
Yes its great when it all goes well...... burt when it all goes wrong!!!!!!! and the owner cannot get the job done, so often the "professional is landed with the previously "unbroken", but "tried" horse who has all the dodges well established. This is a common scenario.

Not for a moment am I suggesting that the OP is in this situation. Just pointing out that professionals do often end up with other peoples mistakes and are often not given ALL the information regarding the horses they will be dealing with. Its alarming how spare folk can be with the truth.
 
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I can't believe how many negative postings there are about sending horses to prof breaking yards. . .
I have broken 3 horses for myself in the last year and was planning to break my newest arrival but had to concede that she needed more consistency in the breaking process than I could give her over the Xmas period. Plus as a 17.1 big boned ISH with a bit of a hot head it was a question of safety. I looked at all my options before sending her away, and decided to opt for the 'family run breaking yard' rather than the local well known prof showjumping breaker. I wanted her to have a 'nice' experience of being broken rather than forced. And it did also come down to a question of money as I hadn't planned to send her away so I needed it to be affordable (£90pw vs £200pw!).
I have had regular updates, videos and photos sent to me. And have nipped up to groom her on one occasion. I'm happy with what they are doing. I have noticed some areas where I would have done it differently: such as the amount of leg I use when breaking, and the fact I have a stronger hand contact when riding my breakers, but I know I will work on that slowly with my horse when she comes home. And I am fortunate enough to be experienced enough to slowly change any little areas I feel I need to once she is home.
I will make sure I ride my horse a couple of times before she comes home so that I know what she feels like and the stage she is at. I don't expect things to go smoothly once she is back. She may have a 'moment' in the school when she realises that she has to work at home now as well. And he hasn't done a lot of hacking with them so I will have to teach that.
I think if you can break at home with the help of an experienced person then you will have a better relationship with your horse but not everyone has the time or facilities to do so, in which case there is nothing wrong with taking your time to visit breaking yards and discussing what you want from them before deciding where to send your horse. It's like choosing a school for your kid.
 

TPO

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Why don't you arrange for a few lessons on the newly backed horse while it's still based with the professional and include a hacking session?

At least that way you have some positive experiences under your belt before riding at home.
 
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