View Full Version : HELP! before i get my head kicked in!!!!!
8th Apr 2005, 08:44 PM
hey everyone! sorry this is going to be long! :o
can anyone help me as i'm starting to feel like i'm not cut out for this horse!
Bullet is getting worse, he winded me last week after he reared up over me and landed on my back :eek: He is still kicking and i dont know what to do - the more i tell him off the worse it makes him but i cant not tell him off for kicking - or can i??? I have been told to bray him by one of my friends but i really dont want to as i think he would turn on me. I decided to bit him with a mouthing bit so i had more control but this didnt go to plan as he carried on rearing when been led so conseqeuntly he bruised his mouth :rolleyes:
I dont even feel safe tying him up anymore as he leans on the rope until the baler bind snaps, he isnt scared he just knows how to get loose - i dont know what to do! I'm also getting scared of handling him as he has so little respect for me, i'm not easily scared but sometimes he acts so aggressive....
My farrier came out to trim him and he was very good, its about the only part of him you can touch safely! he reckons that Bullet is going to make 17hh plus! I think he's right cos he is so leggy, he is also getting loads more spots! :D I really dont want to give him up but i cant and dont want a nasty horse. Do you think its because he is been made to do stuff as basically he was "wild" to a certain degree. he wasnt caught to come in, didnt have his feet picked out etc. like if you want him to move over and he doesnt want to he will cow kick and if you say "NO" he does it again. the only thing that stops him is kicking him back which i hate doing but i figured its what another horse would do!
The other day he was eating and he stood on his bucket which broke so i said "HEY!" back went his lugs, he swung round and kicked the wall i was stood next to so i booted him and he moved back over. i really hate doing this but i cant let this slide, he seems to get bigger, stronger and more aggressive every day! Do you think he could be a rig? How do you tell? one of my friends on the yard is a vet student but i wouldnt let her examine him as i couldnt take responsibility for her getting kicked, he might not be shod but he broke my toenail when he stood on my foot!
I am hoping to move yards as i need an arena and we are totally banned from riding in the fields now as we have to share it with sheep (long story!) :rolleyes: I dont know if join-up would work with him, he likes to be with people but my yard just isnt safe for him.
One more thing! :o How can i teach him to be tied up safely, he doesnt seem to figure that the more he pulls the more it hurts his head! bearing in mind my yard has no gates and he could get onto the road, i would do it in the stable but it is so small (10'x11') and i hate to do anything with him in there in case he lashes out. Any suggestions before i get my head kicked in!!! thanks for reading!
8th Apr 2005, 08:56 PM
What a scary position to be in.
I would get some professional help, it sounds to me like you need a good trainer who has experience working with boisterous youngsters.
Best of Luck
8th Apr 2005, 09:22 PM
I definately agree with Maria. To be honest, I was worried for you when you first said you were buying this young horse.
Is the rearing definately dominance related? Or, is it more like a spook rear?
8th Apr 2005, 09:48 PM
Youngsters can be difficult! :eek:
Aren't you in North Yorkshire? In your shoes I'd get in touch with Sarah Dent who is the RA for the area, she's very good and will be able to help you gain and keep his respect in a kind and effective manner. Her email is sarahmartinedentAThotmail.com (replace the AT with an @) and her phone number is 01943 879834
8th Apr 2005, 10:17 PM
argh! i can see how the decision you must make will be tough..
still, i agree with Yann. a professional does seem the best option for a horse that is liable to injure someone.
i'm assuming you've tried him in a halter to lead?
also.. duno if you dare try but what happens if you smack his bottom with a schooling whip? :S that way you're far enough away not to get hurt but he gets told off!
i hope everything works out for you ^_^
make sure you get back to us on what happens!
9th Apr 2005, 12:08 AM
Echo previous posts, please seek help, dont put yourself at risk. I quite like Frank Bells philosophy to horse training and if you email him he always responds.
With a horse like this I would begin by making friends and trying to build the trust as high as possible on the ground. I've developed a set of exercises that has helped thousands of horses and their owners. It all begins with bonding and ideally melting the horse. This is accomplished by finding his secret spots and melting him, basically " loving him up." I do things like rub the horse's eyes, ears, inside of the mouth and nose. I feather the horse's tongue and help him work his mouth since a loose mouth is a relaxed horse. I teach the horse to drop his head with downward pressure on the lead releasing for the smallest try, the slightest change. Once we've established a real relationship, then we focus on his issues which are likely a lot more than just kicking. It would be a matter of exploring out to the edge of what the horse can handle, then retreating, reassuring, then starting over. With this specific issue I would use a pole, whip, or one of our extendable wands to touch his back legs. That way he can kick to his heart's content and accomplish nothing but waste his energy. I do a lot of work with wild horses and use a 12' pole to make initial contact. With time, empathy, and patience I'm able to touch these untouched horses pretty much everywhere within about a half hour.
9th Apr 2005, 07:48 AM
My boy used to cow-kick every time you asked him to move, and I lost a sharer cos he swung her into a metal fence then kicked her repeatedly (ouchie) I then screwed up my leg which meant a) I had to stay on the ground and he got groundworked to death and b) I had a walking stick! If he swung his butt at me I would just hold the stick out braced under my arm so he was hurting himself by walking into it. He soon got the message. I got a carrot-type stick and used it to enlarge my body language, I did a crash-course in Parrelli and read all the Mark Rashid I could get my hands on. I nearly sold my horse at Xmas, now I wouldnt part with him for any money.
I think others have suggested an RA and thats the way to go, but you can also do a whole lot yourself but it takes time and repetition.
9th Apr 2005, 10:58 AM
ooo what a position to be in! As an owner of a young stallion I can understand your concerns, luckily for me Frits is not an agressive horse but when I handle him you can feel the power in him. I have had a few issues which we are working through. He can be easily spooked but he is getting better. I have been using clicker training with him which is going well and doing a lot of gentle talking to him which also seems to work.
I would get professional help, he does need to be taught some manners just so you can work with him safely! I hope you can work out his problems. Good luck with him.
9th Apr 2005, 11:14 AM
Please get professional help! He sounds like he needs some serious work, and braying him certainly won't help. You could try Carol Taylor - see www.yorkshireequineclinic.com based in Leeds. I can personally recommend them, as my horse is on livery there!
9th Apr 2005, 04:54 PM
i woudl also say get professional help from a horse trainer.
Advice you can obtain from people, you can try it out, it may work, but then it may make the situation even worse.
Although my horse is older, and had a sudden change of mind and decided to become spooky, after listening to people at the yard and other plaesabout how she is taking the mickey out of me and that i should punish her and do this and do that, i finally decided to send her off to a professional. Luckily there is a lady 1.5hrs from me and i sent my horse to her for a week to see if the lady could help me and she is very honest and now elja is going to stay there for a month. After next week i will be going there regulary to have extra lessons to learn how to deal with the problem.
It costs money. But better get it sorted and get your horse to respect than end up yourself in hospital or having a hrose you cant do anything with that is a danger to you.
14th Apr 2005, 09:27 AM
The first priority is to keep you and him safe!!! Lead with a long line, if he goes up get out of the way, step to the side and dont pull, horses are into pressure animals and will pull against pressure which may cause him to go up even more (think when you try to push a horse off of your foot and it just leans into you more!). Pulling him to the side so he loses his balance will make him think twice about doing it again.
Ground work is really important for this sort of problem , you need him to be safe and responsive and he needs to know you will listen to him without him having to make the big displays..
The cause needs to be identified and dealt with - another priority.
The tying up can be helped in a number of ways, but clicker training is very good for helping with this.
To be honest there is just to much to go into to reply properly to this post, you really would benefit from getting some help out to access the situation and find the best way to work for a solution.
If you would like a chat about this you are more than welcome to give me a ring..
Very best wishes,
14th Apr 2005, 10:18 AM
Hi there, I know exactly how you feel I brought Jess in september (she was 18 months then) she is very quick with her back end and has kicked (double barreled) both me and my OH. We have mostly worked through this kicking and I can do anything so long as I have her out of the field, but if shes loose in the field I still have to watch my back.
I have also used the kicking back technique, as you say another horse would kick them back (belive me this was not my first choice of action) and with Qaboos this worked, I kicked him hard once and he has never kicked out anywhere near me again, to the point I can stand behind him and cuddle his bum and slap it or do anything. But this would not be the right approach with Jess, she has that look in her eye, she would come straight back for me (and has done when she was shouted at for trying to kick me)
I have also had lots of experiance with rearing, Qaboos was really bad when he was younger both when being led and when being ridden (thankfully he hasn't reared in ages now) I took a long time and lots of work by me and professionals to get him to keep his feet on the ground, But he was never agressive towards me when he reared, I was never scared by him doing this and knew that he would never hurt me, but he did attack a freind who was looking after him while I was on holiday.
Also Jess reared at me 2 weeks ago, I got a new halter (very pretty with silver for showing) and went to try it on her and stupidly did it in the field, she reared with no warning and boxed me in the face, I was very lucky and nothing was broken but my nose is still quite bruised :( :mad: Even though I have spent alot of time dealing with a rearer she will still be doing some work with my trainer on this, I need an un-biased opinion on how to deal with this without letting my heart rule.
If you have any doubt about your abilitys to handle this horse get some help from some one who can, you may find it takes a while to get the right person but once you find them you will know. Do not continue on your own if you are unsure it will only end in tears.
14th Apr 2005, 12:45 PM
If you have any doubt about your abilitys to handle this horse get some help from some one who can, you may find it takes a while to get the right person but once you find them you will know.
I have already recommended someone who could help on this thread:)
14th Apr 2005, 06:51 PM
just one question to ask to Tootsie4u - why were worried when i said i was getting a youngster - he's not my first! I'm not been funny but this is what annoys me cos everyone thinks age qualifys experience! I have a lot of time to spend on this horse and i am not just some stupid 16yr old that doesnt know what shes doing! i asked for help and advice not critiscm or whatever you want to call it!
I thought i could deal with it but i need some advice that i havent tried! It is definately aggressive dominanace, he will come at you and threaten, you can see the anger in his eyes! :eek: One thing i can do now is go in the stable while he is eating without him losing it, and he is now picking his feet out on command! its just the whole leading/tying up thing that we need to work on. I dont want to swing him cos i think he's just going to break his neck as he's so big and strong. he knows if he pulls on the rope the baler bind comes undone and he can wander which isn't great as our yard is on a road! I dont know whether i should carry a whip when leading to make him walk on as obviously he doesnt know the commands yet. Please can i just have constructive comments as i get enough negativity from the people i know! Thanks for those of you that have made some really good suggestions. :)
14th Apr 2005, 07:19 PM
I would definitely invest in a trainer as Yann suggested - he recommended the website www.intelligenthorsemanship.co.uk to me as I was having problems with my youngster and the results were amazing - totally different horse :)
Good luck :)
14th Apr 2005, 08:09 PM
I didn't know how old you were or whether you had had youngsters before, and that still makes no difference to what I posted. No-one should feel like they can't ask for professional help - it is not a criticism of their horsemanship skills, infact I believe it is a sign of maturity that they can turn to someone who has almost inevitably had more experience in dealing with these kind of problems than they have, It doesn't matter if you are 6, 16 or 66! At the end of the day, horses can be dangerous, so wouldn't you rather ask for help before he either puts you in hospital or damages yours or his confidence so badly that you go past the point of no return?
15th Apr 2005, 09:09 AM
Derby day, have you thought about trying clicker training or something similar with him?
It can be really helpful when they are playing up more because they don't understand what they should be doing (rather than those horses who become evasive of what they know they should be doing). You don't have to use a clicker, just find a noise or signal that he wouldn't hear/see day to day and that can be your 'good boy' cue then you have to focus on the good behaviour, find something he can do easily (even just standing in his stall) and reward it (excessivly at first so he gets the idea) then start to introduce the reward when he does more difficult things, the key is that the reward must be within 3 seconds of the good thing or they wont link the two (thats why a clicker is commonly used)
When you start tieing him just loop the rope through the baler twine at first so there is not anything there for him to lean against (like when its tied) if he stands for one second reward him (food is good for the rewards but be careful as he could get nippy being young so a good scratch, if he likes that, may be just as good) make a really big fuss when he does it right and when its wrong try not to react, just get him and bring him back to where he started and start again, allow him to move his weight but if he tries to pull back or walk off don't scold him just quietly put him back, This it how I get a horse to ground tie and they all seem to get it pretty quick, then when you go to tie them they don't pull back as they have got used to staying without being tied at all.
This would also help with the kicking problem and getting him leading well, as they will start to hunt for the 'good boy' sound, they will try things out until they find it and when they do they will want to keep on trying to get their reward.
You could also find a 'bad boy' sound, for my filly I blow 'rasberrys' at her :D and she will stop what she is doing and look at me like butter wouldn't melt.
This is just a very basic way of clearly showing them whats right as to them if we rant about bad or good behaviour or bad its just BLHA BLHA BLHA :D
15th Apr 2005, 01:08 PM
just one question to ask to Tootsie4u - why were worried when i said i was getting a youngster - he's not my first! I'm not been funny but this is what annoys me cos everyone thinks age qualifys experience!
I dont recall saying anything about your age. I dont even know how old you are, until now that you've just brought it up.
More appropriate to ask (vice how old you are) is what sort of experience have you had raising up young/baby horses? And Im talking about *really* raising them up, not just doting on them on weekends at a riding school? This kicking behavior is normal and anyone buying a young horse should go into it *expecting* to have to deal with this sort of behavior. Someone who has dealt with and trained young horses before should not be surprised by this.
My first post was a sincere 'friendly' type post. It was not meant to offend. I know your story with D and I would have thought to help ease your pain in his passing, something more sane and able to take care of you would be more suitable. It was just honest sincerity for your own well being. Sorry you took it as an attack.
15th Apr 2005, 02:32 PM
Just went off to check who Bullet is...
I gather that on March 12 you got a 2year old Appy Cross gelding ?
By the way, you ask about his spots. I can't find any piccies (?) but he sounds like a few spot. Having spots on their skin does not necessarily relate to fur colour. My mare is a varnish roan appy with a spotted blanket and she has pink skin (which gets sunburnt !) with white fur in some places.
You post a few problems but on 17th (i think) post that he is much better.
But now (8th onwards) he's worse again ?
So - do you think he has ever really settled ? Do you know when he was gelded ? Are there mares around him that could be stirring him up ?
Also what have you been doing in terms of handling him ? You say you have handled youngsters before so I assume you have a programme of education and specific things you know you need to do with a baby like this ?
(my mum had a 2 year old (Eriskay) that was wild off a Scottish island - there are youngsters and youngsters !! :eek: )
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