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Tips or tricks to find a go button...

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  • Tips or tricks to find a go button...

    I have a small Welsh who is 5 and just broke this fall. She is super cute, jumps the moon (cross rails), has a natural change. My problem is she has a less than stellar work ethic. She is full of attitude but not the buck and bolt type of attitude. The attitude is the if it wasn't my idea I'm just not doing it type of attitude.

    When she quiets she just quiets and no amount of crop or spurs is going to make her move.

    Suggestions?

  • #2
    Originally posted by nlk View Post
    I have a small Welsh who is 5 and just broke this fall. She is super cute, jumps the moon (cross rails), has a natural change. My problem is she has a less than stellar work ethic. She is full of attitude but not the buck and bolt type of attitude. The attitude is the if it wasn't my idea I'm just not doing it type of attitude.

    When she quiets she just quiets and no amount of crop or spurs is going to make her move.

    Suggestions?
    Make her think it IS her idea
    FP was lightly started as a 3yr old for exactly this concern
    - so he had great try & work ethic as a 4 yr old: at 5-6, he is alot more demonstrative about what he feels is "appropriate"
    Fortunately as humans we are far more farseeing & reasoning than a horse so it's all about planning - consistently setting him up for rewards is the only effective way with him; he is more than willing to fight & escalate ...

    If she just quits, that is a bonus

    You may wish to rule out any physical (especially metabolic) issues though - also consider if she is just tired (not fit) or lacking energy (metabolic, heart murmur, etc).
    I don't believe PSSM is common in Welsh but you might familiarize yourself with the condition.

    Comment


    • #3
      If she grows roots and is unresponsive to "persuasion"? Do NOT keep spurring and/or smacking-that just teaches the crafty little demons to ignore it.

      I would look at possible pain issues as suggested above. Maybe it's not just "I don't want to and you can't make me". Saddle fit is really tricky with Ponies and...not popular to say it but some riders are just too tall or heavy ( I don't mean fat, just too heavy for THAT Pony) or sit into them too much for some young Pony to comfortably handle.

      If you rule that out? Time to learn it some manners. Can you ground drive it or work it on the lunge with proper equipment like you would a horse? They generally do best when treated just like the full sized version. IMO half the attitude comes from too much kid handling and not enough no nonsense training.

      Once you get it minding well from the ground on the lunge and/or ground driving it should help to deal with those Pony moments. If she does turn to a rock? Pull her head around and make her move sideways or backwards or whatever direction you can get...and if you need a ground person to get her unstuck (preferably from behind with a lunge whip) do it. It really only needs to be done once or twice to get your point across, works with sulky full sized ones too.

      You can also take a less invasive route and just stand there sitting on her until she decides to move...the smart ones are easily bored and it becomes no fun at all if they do not get a rise out of you and start a fight they know they will win. I have used that on several over the years and it really works but you might be out there awhile before they decide to move the first few times. Bring your tunes with you.
      When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

      The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

      Comment


      • #4
        for some horses rewards of going outside the ring are really helpful. on my old pony I would nearly completely nix the ring for the whole summer and instead work in fields, roads and woods, he went from being a cranky pony who hated to be ridden to the most willing pony I've ever been on!
        My Horse Show Photography/ Blog

        Comment


        • #5
          Progression of aides. Suggest, ask, demand.

          For laziness it's leg pressure, harder leg pressure, spur, crop. Immediately reduce/remove the aid when she responds. It sounds elementary but it would do the pony good to re-emphasize this. Start with halt/walk transitions and progress to walk/trot, trot/canter, walk/canter. Once her transitions are sharp apply the same idea to extension and collection demands.

          I agree with the above poster to change up her routine. She sounds smart and bored. Get out in the field. Gallop. Do only trot sets. Go for a trail ride. Set up some jumps outside. Trailer in and school some cross country fences. The good thing about what I said above is that it can be done anywhere. And your pony won't think she is being "schooled".

          Also, remember she is five and newly broke. You will go through stages. My guy went through a leaping stage. Not fun. Be firm, patient, definite and rewarding. Think of her as in the "why?" stage of toddlers. She is testing what she can and can't get away with.
          There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the
          inside of a man.

          -Sir Winston Churchill

          Comment


          • #6
            If you need a "go" button, but a TB. The Go button comes pre-installed at the factory.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by SnicklefritzG View Post
              If you need a "go" button, but a TB. The Go button comes pre-installed at the factory.
              Actually no. I asked the same question 2 years ago about an OTTB I considered purchasing. I received many good responses, he simply had not been taught "leg means forward". I sent him to a good baby trainer, he is doing very well now, he is not a bolter and is more on the lazy side but will work when asked, maybe twice but never more than that.

              OP, hope your young one resolves this issue.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by stolen virtue View Post
                Actually no. I asked the same question 2 years ago about an OTTB I considered purchasing. I received many good responses, he simply had not been taught "leg means forward". I sent him to a good baby trainer, he is doing very well now, he is not a bolter and is more on the lazy side but will work when asked, maybe twice but never more than that.

                OP, hope your young one resolves this issue.

                lol. Maybe it needed to go back to the factory for a warranty repair.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by SnicklefritzG View Post
                  lol. Maybe it needed to go back to the factory for a warranty repair.
                  Well that was my first thought ! I learned "some have it " and others are taught.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Does the pony lunge?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I agree with the other posters who say get her out of the ring.

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Thanks for the suggestions.

                        She is not in pain and saddle fits well. The riders are small and light enough that rider weight shouldn't be an issue. If I was doing all the riding it would mack sense. ( actually she's better for me...)

                        Increasing aids does not help, she just ignores them.

                        I can't take her out right now as we are in the middle of a very cold and ice riddled winter. We did throw her on the trailer to go to a local schooling show with the rest of the horses and she was great until she wasn't...

                        I have enough OTTBs in my barn thanks

                        I think I am going to try the wait it out trick and see how it goes ( oh person on the ground with a lunge whip doesn't work either. )

                        Yes she lunges and ground drives. She had a month off and came back with " Nope I don't want to work." lol

                        She is VERY intelligent and got to sit in a field being a pet dog with a few kids from the time she came off the breeders farm at two until I purchased her at 4. ( She came from that Welsh auction up here in MI a few years ago...herd dispersal...)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by nlk View Post
                          )

                          Yes she lunges and ground drives. She had a month off and came back with " Nope I don't want to work." lol
                          Just a thought of something that may be worth a try, at your discretion....

                          If you feel she's safe, perhaps put one of your best riders on her and put her on the lunge line. Start out with a completely passive rider and see how she lunges with a passenger. If she lunges well in her tack without a rider, but then refuses with weight on her back, she may somehow be in pain.

                          If pain as the cause can be ruled out. Then you might lunge her in tack with no rider until she's responsive to your lunging commands. Next have the rider mount and sit passively, then use your ground commands to prudently "finesse" her forwards into a walk. Once you establish her walking reliably from your ground commands with the passive rider. Next have the rider ask for the walk with a squeeze of the calf, and back that up immediately with a ground command if she ignores the rider aids. When done tactfully, I think there's a chance you might see some positive results using this method of training.

                          But be sure you understand this principle of reinforcement training, and are able to apply it safely without putting your rider at risk.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            We had to figure out what my horse thought was 'fun'. Turns out letting him "hand gallop" around the ring a couple times and stretch out without much contact on his face was "fun". Also popping over jumps he enjoys and tends to get the go button going when we do that. As long as we don't do the same exact jump or set of jumps the same exact way more than a couple of times in a row. Then he just gets bored and lazy pretty quick.

                            So I'd agree with the people who say change it up. Not even just change up what you're doing every ride...change up what you're doing within the ride. Don't just school the same thing the whole time. Do a few times around the ring, then start doing random circles and turns and changes of gait so she really has to pay attention. Make sure to praise her lavishly when she does what you ask. Go through poles on the ground, pop over some crossrails, trot around barrels. Make things interesting and keep her guessing.
                            The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
                            Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              If she is not in pain I would try a dressage whip. They seem to have more bite then a crop for those that go through the I don't want to go forward stage.

                              Comment

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