Update on 3yo rearing in hand

NELSON11

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12 June 2009
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775
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In the Midlands
Some of you may remember my post about a month ago where my 3yo 17hh gelding reared going out to the paddock in the mornings. Well about a week after my post the yard owner took him out after swapping the eskadron safety headcollar with the chain for a leather one to lead him out in. Apparently he was wound up in the stable as the door was left open whilst she attempted to put the headcollar on. He then proceeded to rear walking to his paddock and the yo let him go. He then ran around outside his paddock where the yo then proceeded to catch him and he reared and struck her with his front foot. So she ended up in casualty with a bruised shoulder. I was mortified, but he knows she is terrified of big horses and so I obviously took over the turning out of him. Anyway the day after he reared with me and caught me with his hoof on the same shoulder and knocked me to the ground. I hung onto his leadrope and then picked myself up and gave him a good smack with my schooling whip down the shoulder. He just stood and stared at me then walked into his paddock calmly. There was no exuberance, just perfectly calm and went up almost in slow motion. I was very upset but proceeded that afternoon to do some in hand work in our little indoor school, he did 20 minutes lovely and was very respectful. Obviously when handling any young horse, I wear a hat and gloves unlike the staff on the livery yard. The long and the short of it is I have handled him twice a day since the upset with the yo and lead him out on a lungeline to give us plenty of space and not once has he shown any tendencies to rear with me. He walks along to his paddock and stands, so what I can't understand is how can he behave so well for me over the last few weeks but everytime he is handled by the livery yard staff there is always a drama. He has a healing tendon sheath injury so his long lining/lunging has had to cease as well as his loose jumping but doesn't appear bored. Just very tiring on me as feel like cannot have a break and I am no superhorsewoman but up there twice a day 7 days a week even though we get free turnout. The last thing I want is people getting hurt but something is upsetting him when I am not around. Anyway will keep you posted on the progress.
 

kellyroma

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3 January 2010
Messages
16
aww, im pleased to hear you looked to groundwork, i find its usually the answer, with almost any problem! hope your livery staff start coming good- its no good having him on a yard where they cant do anything with him, doesnt sound like a very good yard!!! hope it all goes well, keep us updated!
 

smiffyimp

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23 July 2009
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957
Blimey - poor you! My (then)3 yo did this, although 15.1 is slighlty less scary that 17+! I used a pressure halter etc - trying to be nice, not wanting to scare the baby - although I was terrified! I then put a chiffney on and I'm pleased to say - that was the end of that! He still has a pop in him if he wants, usually when loading, but now a good growl makes him think twice. Thankfully I have a very experienced YO, who still turns him out in a chifney, but he did play her up when we first arrived, although he was a s good as gold for me. They're babies trying it on, and as with everything they need to learn, but in the right hands. I'd never used a chifney before, I had heard all the horror stories, but in the right hands, they are a good tool. The pressure halter wasnt touching the sides. Thankfully it hasnt passed on to his ridden work!
 

bailey14

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29 October 2008
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In the middle somewhere
Hi mate just seen your post. As I am on the same yard I can't help but wonder if it is because they are rushing to turn out and because of this ****** is interpreting this as excitement, hence the rearing. I have worked there often enough to realise that turnout is one hell of a job and with so many horses on the yard and few staff and it is often a mission to get them all turned out on time in order to cram all the other jobs that need doing in.

As fridays incident with my own horse kicking out on the lunge and nearly catching the vet will illustrate, horses mostly strike out through excitement and not rarely through nastiness so try not to take it personally. Instead see it as a learning curve. He is nearly four so as I suggested before why not try the loading/unloading, take him on short journeys, unload and lead him around a little, let him see things, take him in the indoor school and let him explore, walk him into other horses stables (obviously when they are not there!!), put him on the walker for ten mins, maybe encourage him to walk over raised poles, put a saddle on his back, teach him to pick up his feet.

Maybe the idiom 'the devil makes work for idle hands' is worth remembering. Whilst you may not feel he is bored, you have no real way of telling and an active mind and body will go a long way towards helping to stave off any unwanted behaviour. As usual my offer of help is always there. x
smile.gif
 

ecrozier

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20 October 2006
Messages
6,174
Oh my word, that sounds scary! I'm very glad our 3 year old hasn't tried this yet, he will very occasionally bounce up on his back legs if very over excited but never shown any signs of kicking out or going vertical. Well done for sorting the problem, I must say if necessary for safety I wouldn't hesitate to use a chifney on Roo. Interesting what Smiffyimp says tho, we went away for 4 days over new year, and its the first time since we have had him that we have left him in another person's care. Friend from yard looked after both him and my older boy and said he was quite naughty, nipping at her when she was leading him, grabbing hold of the rug of the other horse she was leading him with, spinning around in circles, etc. So I came back all prepared to have to restore discipline - and he is being an absolute angel! Not sure how long it will last but think he was definately testing the limits with the new person and found he could get away with more!
 

Kenzo

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Joined
28 February 2008
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13,929
Location
Yorkshire
Glad to hear the ground work has paid off, sounds like you have done a grand job, it never fails to put the time in and do the ground work and I'm also glad to hear that the ground work has paid off rather than using a gadget (all be at times for safety reasons people have to), after all its all about respect rather than strength, at leat that's is what we should all aim for so its good that you have taken this route and its paid off.

I agree it must be very frustrating, but it sounds like your horse is wise and has started to get to know his master...you and is taking the mick out of the person who turns him out, all I can suggest is you carry on with the ground work....and don't stop just because he's now ok...the beggars will look for ways to catch you out, but the person who is handling or turning the horse out on a daily basis needs to master your horse now, is there anyway they can join in and some ground work with you?

You'll get there, he's just bigger and stronger so it will take a while but you'll get there in the end, all you can do is try to ensure everyone is safe, but accidents will happen, its part of the job, working with horses.
 
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