• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Former Logging Pony...help?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Former Logging Pony...help?

    Hi folks ... apologies for this is advance! it turned out long :x

    First, I'm not sure if this is the best board to post my question, but I figured the driving community could at least point me in the right direction.
    Also, I have never driven a horse, or worked with a former driving horse. I've always played in H/J land

    Recently bought a 14 hh Haflinger gelding, 6 years old, with the purpose of keeping him as a companion animal and light trail riding horse. We have enough "big" guys to truly ride and show, so he's just meant to keep them company when they are home.

    Backstory was that he was a logging pony (part of team) until he was 4 years old, spent the last two years at the rescue, and was in and out of pro training for 60 day sets. Was adopted out, "bolted" (agency said it was probably more of a skittering spook) with his rider who was scared and sent him back. Has been out of work since being returned around Christmas.

    Fast forward to April and I take him home. Give him a few days to settle in, think he's a doll. Quiet quiet quiet. very lovely. I had lunged him at the agency barn, was very "nervous" in the sense that he seemed to want constant affirmation that he was doing the right thing. Very agreeable, just didn't like loud voices! Okay, I can handle that...yes, he's oh so cute, of course I need a pony....I'll take him.

    Knowing that he was "spooky" we did our first ride out with a buddy. A+ .... ended up going for a long trail ride, through water, fields, and back home. Didn't bat and eyelash, was a happy pony.
    Next day, rode him solo down in the ring (mostly walk, a little trot...thought we'd bring fitness back slowly) and again, A+.

    Day off because of bad weather, gave him a bath, groomed him, etc. trying to get a repor going.

    Yesterday, headed out with our buddy again for a low-key trail ride and without warning (I mean, NO warning) goes from 0-90mph bolt down the hill and out to the field. Brought him around after several figure eight laps through the field. Sitting there, stunned, I patted his neck and ZOOM bolted again (genuine bolt, not a spook or a scoot, took the bit and rocketed away)...this time saddle slipped on his round belly (yes yes, girth was tight). I was a goner. Bailed (not hurt, just a sore arm today ). Grabbed the lunge line and worked him for 20min, then tried to get on in the ring. One foot in the stirrup and GONE again, without warning. No eye or ear or breathing clue. Lunged him again, then he went to bed.

    So, I guess my question is, should I be expecting some bolt behavior in the transition from logging/driving to riding (I realize this sounds dumb, but I guess a better question is...what's the learning curve here)? Is there a cue I'm giving him by accident? Or is this naughty pony behavior? Any tips for transitioning to riding pony?

    Also....voice commands. He seems to love those, and I wish I could find out what his original cues were. Are there some standard ones that an H/J person might not realized? (For example....walk on, trot on, canter on he's attentive to on the lunge. Whoa is stop dead (surprising!)) He's such a sensitive little guy, I want to be sure I'm communicating with him the right way! And, not encouraging naughty pony behavior.

  • #2
    Wow! Sounds like you have had an interesting ride! Glad you were not hurt though.

    I don't know much about logging horses and all of the driving training that I have done for my own ponies I pretty much train for the same if I was either riding or driving - really no difference. I do train with a lot of voice and they know w/t/c and whoa all by voice commands before they are driven. I can even use them while riding and no reins are needed for transitions. I have also watched and trained with some great driving trainers and they pretty much do the same thing....

    There are no special "cues" that I give my guys while riding, I might use my voice a little more, but thats it. I would think your guy might be a little scary to drive as well and perphaps that's why he stopped at 4 years old.
    The only thing I can think of is it could be a pain related issue. Perhaps he is back sore, his teeth hurt or something is out of alignment. Have you had him checked over?

    I'm sure some others will pipe in with some great advice. Good luck with your guy

    Comment


    • #3
      This is NOT a problem because he was a logging/driving pony
      it is more probably because he had inadequate training in the first place

      and it may be that he was "anxious" in his logging job and that is how he ended up in the rescue in the first place

      you need to think of this pony as greener than grass green and also specifically NOT put him in situations where he CAN bolt and cause a problem for a while

      additionally you may need to look at your saddle and make sure the tree is WIDE enough for this type pony physique. a too narrow saddle tree IS going to constantly shift on a too wide barrel belly

      Haflingers have a reputation out there (warranted or not) of bolting
      and much of that comes from their personality. While training they are amenable and SEEM to get what you are teaching - but they really havent. So when they get in a situation that calls for relying on training they dont have the ABCs down pat to depend on.

      Good luck with this one. Take it slow. Assume the pony doesnt know much of anything.

      Comment


      • #4
        Ditto what Drive NJ said... he may have been a "logging"pony put with another experienced pony 'til he learned the ropes is often how they are trained! WHOA is a good word to know, & probably his favorite word to hear after a long hard day! HAW and GEE may work as left & right. He probably has had NO RIDING training, and you (or past rescue workers) have been sincerely lucky that he will go out with a pal. I would start over with him, "AS IF" he's had no riding training. IF he WAS a bolter under harness... he woulda been worked & worked & worked until he was past dead tired to learn that bolting or dragging his pair around was NOT acceptable, OR he coulda been dumped quickly, cuz once they learn they CAN do that & get out of work (by either breaking harness or shafts or hurting their pair partner)......it is difficult to "un-learn".

        Also, the bolting behavior you described above seemed more of an intentional naughty pony thing.... imho
        ‎"Luck favors the prepared, darling." ~~ Edna Mode

        Comment


        • #5
          I have a very different take on it- and I may be wrong... but I don't think he was a logging pony- I think that he was a pulling pony- as in- contest pulling for heavyweights. Those horse are often trained with less than wholesome methods (electric shock for starters) many other horses simply can't take the emotional upping of the load to the point of failure and they get really psyched out. Some will just (understandably) snap and become unmanagable.

          It doesn't make sense that a 6 year old would be split out of a team and wind up in a rescue unless he was the bad crazy one of the team (It's often that way- that one horse helps the other get through the day- but the other horse is totally worthless as a driving animal without the mass and mind of the better half helping him through. You simply don't split up pairs for no reason- I suspect that your pony was a runaway who couldn't be reasoned with. It is VERY hard to bring a contest horse back to sanity as normal driving horse behavior. I don't have experience with a contest horse as a riding mount- but I can imagine absolute runaway impossible to communicate with the bit as a very probable possibility...I do think that totally starting over with a new discipline might be the best thing for him- hopefully you can get through the bolting without getting hurt.

          I've also known not just one- but a few - totally trainwreck runaway haflingers that have passed hands through local Amish horsetraders... they would take them on hoping to make something of them- and wind up having to tade them off before they got killed by them. I believe these ponies were problems- not by any fault of their breed- but because of past history as pulling ponies.

          Not everyone uses gee and haw- but here is the memory aid...
          "Gee, you're right" (so haw is left)

          Comment


          • #6
            I sent you a PM.

            He was part of a hitch until he was 4. So he was hooked to another (presumably older and trained pony) as a baby. Haffies, being a draft breed prob shouldn't start lite work until they are 3 and heavy work when they are 4. No way of telling if the original owner did that. But point being that it is intirely possible that this guy was never trained on his own at all. He may have been hitched to an older, more trained pony. and was just along for the ride. And that was the extent of his training.

            I have experience with Fjords (and limited to one pony at that) but I've spoken with many Fjord breeders and trainers on this issue. These breeds (Fjords and Haffies) are placid and agreeable. Many people get in trouble with the breed as they train them as the trainer will mistake "Placid compliance" with "understanding". They don't take the time to make sure that training concepts are solid and well understood. And eventually they rush the training and over whelm the pony and the result is a panic and bolt.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Thank you all!
              The thought that there are "gaps" in his training makes a lot of sense. It reminds me of dogs in a way....we had a puppy for a while alongside an older dog. Puppy would sit, down, stay, and we thought she was brilliant! Well, take away the older dog and the puppy would look at us like we were speaking greek. She was following the other dog, not us. Maybe that happened with this guy?

              And I should have added, wasn't split from the pair. Both were surrendered for financial reasons. His partner was adopted out some time ago.

              NRB, thank you, I will write you back soon.

              Comment


              • #8
                I know it was mentioned once above but it can not be mentioned too much. Saddle fit. Big wide backs need a saddle that truly fits. A pinching saddle can easily lead to a bolt.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I agree with the problem of saddle fit, and, I think that you might have to take this guy right back to basics. Treat him like he's a youngun' fresh out of the field with no work ever done. He just may have to learn how to be a riding horse, from scratch.
                  If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.
                  Desmond Tutu

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I will be honest and will most likely get flamed for this...but you said Haffie. I don't touch them with a 10 ft pole for the reasons stated above. Trainers think compliance is understanding and thus trained. Of all the bolting carriage wrecks I have seen most of them were with haffies.

                    I am NOT saying that they ALL bolt. They just need a really solid foundation in their training to make sure they understand what is being asked of him.

                    I totally agree with starting him from scratch on the ground and checking your saddle.

                    And of course, he could just be pulling naughty pony on you. Its hard to tell without being there.
                    www.facebook.com/doggonegoodgoodies
                    http://doggonebakedgoods.com/

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Along with the wide fitting saddle, add a hunting breastplate for English saddle or a Y shaped breast collar for a Western saddle. Fit snug, NOT TIGHT, they will prevent saddle from FULLY turning under the equine. Saddle may slide sideways but it will stop with the straps of the breastplate or breast collar coming into play when pulled.

                      I named specific types of equipment, wouldn't suggest others because they don't fit a horse the same way. Other types are not anchored on the saddle rings and girth/cinch, enough to hold the saddle from fully turning. Shorten strap from chest ring to girth/cinch, so it has about a hand width of slack (hand sideways from thumb on chest to little finger on strap, makes strap tight) until saddle slips or turns sideways on horse to pull on strap. Most breast collars, breastplates, have way too long a strap to girth, so you may need to punch holes to shorten it so it comes into play when needed.

                      These should help you hold on a bit better, should the pony do a big spook or bolt while riding. We used the hunting breastplate and Y shaped breast collar on the kids horses, for safety. Kids TRY to do things right, but may forget to tighten girths as needed, be leaning sideways on the animal, which can let the saddle turn under them. However with the limited saddle turn, kid could stop horse or swing down before they were UNDER the horse. Sainted horses also might stop when they feel saddle going off balance, so kid kind of just steps off and has a terrible case of embarrassment, yet is UNHURT. The extra fractions of time, with saddle only going "so far down" can help you control the dismount or stop the equine, maybe without getting hurt. DO ride with your stirrup hangers OPEN, so the English leathers come off EASILY in bad situations. Many of those stirrup hangers won't open EASILY in ANY situation, even using TOOLS! You sure don't want a failure in a bolting or saddle turning situation, to hang you up. You also might put on a pair of Peacock Stirrups, with the rubber band sides. Double safety for you in dealing with this pony.

                      Inexperienced, green or not, he may have learned to enjoy the bolting, and not be trustworthy. True bolt means he has lost his mind, would run thru a door if going in that direction. You can't fix that. Giving him a second chance, not getting hurt yourself, could be worth your time. This sounds terrible, but have you got a REAL bit on him with shanks and a curb chain? You want the BEST chance of winning, should he try bolting again and a ring snaffle is NOT the best tool for the job. Even a mechanical hackamore, chain chinstrap, NOT that English type with the padded nose, could give you a leverage advantage, but not be in his mouth. He would laugh at the English mechanical hackamore and that wouldn't be good for you! Haffies do have short, very muscular necks, so there isn't a lot of room for bending them around, so leverage might be useful.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi I am wondering what the update with your pony is?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'm wondering too.

                          I have a Haflinger, and he bolted with me on my 4th ride too. Same kind of thing - no warning whatsoever. Tried to get back on and he bolted before I could get my butt on him. So we started from square one, did ground work, ground driving and longing, then I got on him like it was the very first time. We haven't had a problem since, but we don't ride him much at all since he's got a shoulder issue. I have a friend who used one for PC and he bolted couple times with the kids too. But then I have another friend with one, and he's a rock star - she has him in training with her regularly though.

                          And I agree with goodhorse - I initially rode him in a snaffle and he goes in a hackamore with a curb chain now. That neck is something else - it's like there's concrete in there. There was no way to do one way stop with mine, I had to abandon ship .

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Sounds like another Haffie I know.

                            Rode one like that. He belonged at a therapeutic riding stable, I helped lead him . . .perfect gentleman. But about once a month he'd tire of walking the kids around in circles and would start to nip at whomever was leading him during session. I had permission to ride him at hunter paces and take him out foxhunting.

                            He was much better after a good gallop in the woods now and again.

                            However he'd bolt for no reason. Roading, hound walking, hunting, hunter paces, you'd name it. The rest of the group would gallop right and he'd swerve left. Gallop a big figure eight and come back like there was nothing wrong. No rhyme no reason. He had a very hard mouth, was on the forehand most of the time and we never trained him out of it. We just expected him to "go off on his own now and again" and just enjoy the ride. LOL.

                            Comment

                            Working...
                            X