Road riding problems

Shannon69

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Jul 14, 2004
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Hiya,

I am new to the boards and I guess this thread should maybe be in the training section but after having returned to riding after 15 years I felt more comfy being here!!!!

I have bought two mares (only intended to buy one!) and the mare that I am using for myself is a gorgeous 16.2hh Hanoverian mare 13 years old who has been turned out with her previous owners for the majority of the last two years. She has been excellent out on the road up until two months ago when she freaked at a flourescent tracta unit coming through the village and projected me into a parked car.

Neither of us were injured thankfully but it has knocked both her and my confidence. We have been back out on the road since but she is very flighty, fine one minute and then jumping all overthe shop the next with no apparent reason(no traffic, bright colours etc). She also was happy to hack out alone but now if I try to take her out alone she whinnies and is constantly turning about to head back to the field. In company she will go so far but no further. Can anyone give any suggestions as to what to do about this.

My grazing is road locked and therefore I have to hack a mile or so to get t any decnt riding and I don't want this to spoil the good time we were having.
 

Laetitia

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Jul 20, 2002
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That's a bit of a blow, glad neither of you were hurt. Perhaps she's not as traffic proof as first thought. Have you tried some ground work - long reining. Sounds like a confidence thing, so will take oodles of time with small forward steps. You'll get there in the end. L
 

Ipsa

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You could also check her feeding regime- is she getting too much!
Also could be worth getting a vet to do a blood test to make sure her vitamin/mineral balances are OK as this can have a big effect on behaviour.
Also check tack fit and that she is not sore anywhere.
Do you think even though your confidence has taken a knock (not surprising at all in the circumstances) that you are tense and uptight which could be making her worse. I was thinking what I would be like if I'd had your experience with the parked car:) and I think you are very brave going out on your own.
Maybe it would be an idea to only go out in company if that is possible and if possible go out with an experienced instructor/horse handler who could assess the situation and see if the horse is genuinely frightened or whether she is taking you for a bit of a ride.
Good luck :)
 

Shannon69

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Jul 14, 2004
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Thanks alot for the replies

and yes I do think that because I have had my confidence knocked I am far more tense, and I do think that is affecting her. I have run through her feed and she is taking in the right amount for her weight and work load! Although I think a blood test may also be worth checking anyway.

I have spent a fair amount of time schooling her since and her behaiviour and our relationship is improving vastly in the paddock but the road is always the same battleground and I am ashamed to say that, that is exactly what it has turned into.

I have hacked out with company too but I think it may well be worth making it with someone who can independantly assess what is going on and offer some advice. I don't want to be stuck in the paddock for eternity!!!
 

nutkin

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Oct 5, 2003
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I think you should get an instructor to help with this problem. It seems as though you have gotten into a bit of a vicious circle. Your horse and you have both had a fright which has knocked both of your confidences. Your horse looks to you as leader and is most likely picking up that you are nervous which is why she is calling for her field companion. I think you need to get an experienced instructor to help with this problem. They need to ride the horse out for you so as they can make an assesment as to which is the best way to solve this problem. In the meantime you should either ride in the field working on schooling and spooky things so as to build your confidence in each other or only hack out in company with a safe steady horse to give her a lead.
 
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