Young horse lost confidence hacking after lockdown?

NooNoo59

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My nearly 6 year old welshie has always been pretty chilled out hacking but since lock down he seems really on edge and not settled. I have done lots of walking in hand, have been out twice with someone on the ground and tonight with another very steady horse and someone on the ground. He felt really edgy and jumpy so unlike him. He gets a handful of chaff and Feedmark Steady up, out at night and in during the day with a small haynet. Is this just a phase, anyone experienced anything similar?
 

NooNoo59

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To add we were asked not to ride during the first 6 weeks of lockdown so it was ground work and lunging only
 

meleeka

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My 20 something is the same! I think the outside world looks very different to them too. Where I am there’s less cars and more cyclists and walkers. Our off road route is much busier than normal and I think the lack of cars on the road is unnerving for him. If nothing else has changed I think you just need more time for him to get used to it again .
 

Gleeful Imp

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I’ve been able to ride throughout, and my very sane and sensible mare was very jumping hacking at the beginning of lockdown. She’s nearly - but not quite - back to normal now. I agree it was the change in noise levels, and I also wonder if she was picking up generalised anxiety about the whole situation from me.
 

Pinkvboots

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One of my horses can take weeks to settle after a period of not being ridden, I would maybe walk a short route in hand a few times then hop on and hack the same route and stick to that for a while, hopefully then he will settle down and you can start to go a bit further and a different route.
 

NooNoo59

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One of my horses can take weeks to settle after a period of not being ridden, I would maybe walk a short route in hand a few times then hop on and hack the same route and stick to that for a while, hopefully then he will settle down and you can start to go a bit further and a different route.
Yes thats a thought as this is the first time he has not been ridden for that length of time since I have had him going to do the same route on friday with the same set up and just keep chipping away at it
 

ThreeWBs

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Yep! My 6yo is exactly as you described. We had about 6 weeks off hacking and riding due to an abscess issue and lockdown. He was very spooky and reluctant to move forward when we went back out.. it was quite shocking as he's usually very good to hack!
 

NooNoo59

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Yep! My 6yo is exactly as you described. We had about 6 weeks off hacking and riding due to an abscess issue and lockdown. He was very spooky and reluctant to move forward when we went back out.. it was quite shocking as he's usually very good to hack!
thats really interesting I thought it was just me he was very jumpy on our first walks in hand but better now. I did 3 short walks with another horse about 5 weeks ago but they were disasters the other horse (much older) was spooky and we had a couple of issues also his saddle was tight (now sorted) therefore back was sore (also sorted) this is the youngest horse I have ever had although have had anxious/nervous ones before, so it is a steep learning curve!
 

Midlifecrisis

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I know it sounds daft but when a familiar route hasn’t been covered in a while the vegetation grows the views change and I think the ponies get spooked by the unfamiliarity, but ought to settle after a few ride outs.
 
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