SO Angry - Xmas Lights - Sorry Long

tammyisback

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Ok, Xmas lights went up at the house next door to our yard last week. I have to walk past front of house (on road) to get to my field. My two year old has decided he is petrified of them. Every day I have been leading him in bridle and backwards and forwards doing everything I can think of to get him used to them. Still he will only go past 15 metres away (middle of road). Even with the persuasion of a schooling whip aswell I cannot convince him.

Yesterday it all took a turn for the worse as stupid idiot driver comes pelting down the road and I can not get my horse to move to side of road! I get dragged about 100 metres before horse finally gets loose. I swear at driver, they stop, and eventually between me and driver I get him into field.

So, yesterday evening I went to see said owner of said Xmas lights, (who has horses herself) and asked if there was any chance they could be turned off between 6 and 7 whilst I am turning out/bringing in as its dangerous, she says no, on the grounds that she doesn't like the horses walking on the road to get to the field anyway. I should teach him to like them, and that she is entitled to have Xmas lights up??????

I am totally flabbergasted, have tried to teach him, but think it might be one of those irrational fears they all have, have nowhere else to turn him out. Think it may be to do with fact her and YO are having disagreements at the moment about some planning permission thats pending, but how can I sort this for me and my horse??
 

dressage_diva

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Could you buy some cheap battery operated outdoor fairy lights and put them somewhere near his field (but not within his reach obviously), so that by having them near him all day he gets use to them? Obviously they won't be as bright as those on your neighbours house, but it might be a start?
 
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I wonder why he would find the lights so objectionable?

I have to say - I do agree up to a point with the other person - he'll have to get used to worse in the future. But it does sound less than ideal to have to bring any horse in in the dark along a main road - especially one that is upset by something......

Why not start brining it in in the daylight - sounds as if it would be safer for all......
 

amandathepanda

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Yes she is entitled to have them up but you politely requested they get turned off for a short period on safety grounds. This sounds like a case of sour grapes over the dispute between the house owner & your YO. Any way you can bring your horse in before it gets dark? Personally I think she is being irresponsible when she has horses herself - she should realise that youngsters won't always accept monsters that easily. At the very least she isn't doing anything to help her popularity!
 

HelsB

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I think that leading your horse up the road in the dark is dangerous, is there no other way?

Shouting at car drivers probably won't help your cause either, they will probably be less likely to slow down in future
 

Twinkletoes

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[ QUOTE ]
I wonder why he would find the lights so objectionable?

I have to say - I do agree up to a point with the other person - he'll have to get used to worse in the future. But it does sound less than ideal to have to bring any horse in in the dark along a main road - especially one that is upset by something......

Why not start brining it in in the daylight - sounds as if it would be safer for all......

[/ QUOTE ]
Inclined to agree. If you cant get there earlier is there anyone who is experienced and kind enough to bring your youngster in during daylight?
 

tammyisback

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He does not react to the lights in daylight, think it is purely as it's so dark. When I bring him in from the field I wear a full length fluorescent coat and (normally) walk on the grass verge with him as it is very wide. I work from half 8 till half 6 so it's just not practical to bring him in during daylight, although I do at weekends and like I said it's not a problem when it's light!

With regards to shouting at the driver, no not a great idea, and not proud of it but I was panicking as I thought I was going to lose my boy.
 

tammyisback

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The lady who offers a kind of pay as you go livery service will not bring him in until she can see him walk past the lights sensibly as sometimes she does not get to bring in till 4. There is no-one else that would do it I think. Such a pain as its the only yard in my area that offers what I need so can't really move.
 

tammyisback

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Yes, I would much rather he did get over it!!! I was trying to persevere with him, but only asked her as I thought it might be simpler than having a dangerous situation. Plus I thought it might save a bit of money on her leccy bill!
 

missymoo

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Talk about christmas spirit it wouldnt hurt her to turn the lights off for 1 hour . I also have to walk along a road in the dark I make sure I wear my hi Viz clothes. I would pefer to move to a yard that doesn't have fields the other side of the road but thats not possible.
 

tammyisback

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Glad there is someone else that knows how I feel, I am on the waiting list for a field thats not away from our stables but the people who have got them seem strangely reluctant to swop!! I always wear by big jacket and the horses have reflective strips on their rugs, tail flaps!

I also offered to buy a timer switch so she didnt have to do it herslef!
 

GT_02

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Is there a verge/pavement at the other side of the road you could nip onto just while you go past them, and until he gets used to them? It's not ideal, but I suppose it's safer than being dragged down the middle of the road in the dark.
 

Imonone

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Have you tried walking past with his head in a bucket of feed. Sometime distraction can work and he will associate it all with something nice.

I always lead youngsters with a lunging rope as it gives you much better control when something goes wrong, you can step out to the side and keep them on a circle. Either that or a be nice headcoller that can give you a bit of extra control.

Im sure if you persevere you will get it sorted. This is the problem with youngsters everyday brings a new challenge and if dealt with effectively a new reward ....

Good luck.
 

YorksG

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I know this is going to be unpopular, BUT this for me, is a case for not buying younsters, horses to bring on etc if you don't have the facilities yourself. While consideration from others is nice, you cannot expect people to organise their lives around your needs. In nthe past have led on road in the dark, but never a green or young horse, IMO you are asking for trouble.
 
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I think you should get some lights yourself for 2.99 in tesco and put them up at the stables and desensitise horse in safe environment. After all it is something you can replicate, unlike the military tank my baby horse and I met out !

I dont think it is reasonable to expect houseowner to turn their christmas lights off no, and think it is the type of request which would make non horsey peeps turn against horses!

sorry but think this is one you can sort out at base rather than trying to get others to change for your convenience

*goes and hides under the bed*
 

tammyisback

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Thanks for everyones opinions! I knew this would be a mixed reaction. GT_02, unfortunatley there is no verge on the other side of the road. HelsB, my mum or another livery will gladly walk my older pony in front who is his field companion also but it makes no difference to him, he still reacts the same. Mickey66 thanks for the lunge rope suggestion, I will try that. I second your feeling about youngsters, I have always found them the most rewarding experience! FestiveG understand where you are coming from but he is wise beyond his years in many situations, even when I came across a fire engine out long lining him on the road, he acted like a pro, but for some reason I have been unable to overcome this!
 

popp

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[ QUOTE ]
I hope you resolve it soon .
Ive learnt a long time ago some people just care about themselves its a sad world


[/ QUOTE ]
i agree
 

chestnut cob

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[ QUOTE ]
What about good neighbours!!! If you live next door to a livery Yard you should have some thought for the horses .

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

[/ QUOTE ]

Why? People don't neccessarily move in next door to a livery yard, they just end up next to one. IMO the lady with the lights is perfectly entitled to have them on whenever she likes. The baby horse will have to get used to worse in his life than Xmas lights - how about leading him in a chiffney or a dually? You'll have more control than in the bridle. Do some groundwork with him so he learns how to respond correctly to the pressure of the dually and use that. Works brilliantly to load my big beast who hates trailers with a passion and nearly broke my ankle towing me away from one!
 

Tia

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Who are you so angry with? The car driver, the light house owner, your youngster or yourself?


Not the car drivers fault, not the light house owners fault - therefore that really only leaves you and the youngster. Don't be angry at him or yourself
, just work through it. By 2 years old he needs to see as much as possible; try a bit of bombproofing with him; this will help not only in a situation such as this, but will develop trust between the two of you also. You don't want a situation like this to keep cropping up, so the quicker you deal with introducing as many new things to him as possible, the easier it will make life for you, and for him.
 

Theresa_F

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Could you have the older horse between him and the lights, I do appreciate that you will be further in the road, but it might work. A pocket of treats to get his attention and given every few steps could be worth a try as a temporary cure.

As well as the lunge rein, get a dog choke chain and thread it under his jaw through the headcollar - will give you a lot more control but no damage to baby mouths. I also on occasion carrying a schooling whip and use is as if riding to get them going with me by gently tapping them and if required, a firm slap to get the message through.

I had to bring Farra in later than usual the other evening, normally she is very good, but she was really on her toes as others were in the distance and very excited. Being a 17 hand 4 year old clyde with a 5' handler, the only thing that stopped her tanking off was my chain. A few hard tugs kept her by me.

Sometimes really getting after them and making it very clear to not go with you has unpleasant consequences can do the trick - but you know your youngster.

If you have a safe area, ie school I would string up lights and really work on the issue, plus anything else he objects to. Richard Maxwell's birth to backing is very good reading on building up the relationship of trust.
 

jumpthemoon

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Sorry, as much as I realise it's a pain for you - I have to say I wouldn't be happy if someone told me to turn off my Christmas lights for an hour every evening! I think I'd keep horse in until the weekend, and install some lights around the yard and practise every evening walking around the yard by the lights. Then at the weekend I would turn out and have another go, maybe at dusk - when the lights are on but it's not too dark.

Good luck
 

martlin

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[ QUOTE ]
Sorry, as much as I realise it's a pain for you - I have to say I wouldn't be happy if someone told me to turn off my Christmas lights for an hour every evening!

[/ QUOTE ]
I must be more kind hearted than you, because if somebody came and asked nicely to do that for whatever reason, especially if they offered to install a time switch for me I would be very happy to oblige

But that's just me I suppose, I realise that the house owner doesn't have a duty to do so
 

cazza

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I must admit I agree with Martlin but then not everyone is the same, as a short term fix would you be able to put a set of blinkers on him? I don't know if this would work or not but may be worth a go?
 

Ottinmeg

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i'd also turn the lights off if asked BUT baby horse does need to get used to xmas lights so i would also buy some cheap ones and hang them up in the yard/near to stable etc so he gets used to them.cazza's idea of blinkers could also work.
 

jumpthemoon

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[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
Sorry, as much as I realise it's a pain for you - I have to say I wouldn't be happy if someone told me to turn off my Christmas lights for an hour every evening!

[/ QUOTE ]
I must be more kind hearted than you, because if somebody came and asked nicely to do that for whatever reason, especially if they offered to install a time switch for me I would be very happy to oblige

But that's just me I suppose, I realise that the house owner doesn't have a duty to do so

[/ QUOTE ]

I don't think I'm being mean particularly - what if she happened to be in the bath, or fall asleep? She might as well not bother having the Christmas lights up at all. Also, the purpose of them is generally for the benefit of children, so between 6-7pm is a little unfair to any children in the household. Other people are entitled to have Christmas lights up when they want them, so why should this lady not be able to just because someone has to walk her horse past?

Don't get me wrong, I fully sympathise with the OP. I just think it is a little unfair asking the light house owner to be on call at 6 and 7 pm to turn her lights off and on - she might as well not bother having them. I'd work on desensitising the horse instead.

However, I am in a particularly bad mood today, so maybe tomorrow I would think differently.
You never know - that could be the case with the woman whose house it is...
 

Alibear

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I'd use a chifney and a lunge line, I'd walk on the road on the opposite side to the lights and I would wear a flashing light vest as well as the flurescent coat.

Think you'd be OK then? Sometimes with horses we just have to kncuckle down and persevere even though the situation is not ideal.
 
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