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    Last edited by Tikitiki; Mar. 15, 2019, 11:01 AM.

    #2
    Horses don't fake and they don't lie.

    You are a predator as you have the eyes on the front of your face. He is a prey animal as he has his eyes on the sides of his face.

    If he is quiet and relaxed in the crush. Continue to do that. Feed him there as well.

    From your questions do not try to introduce a halter or a rope or anything else without expert help.
    It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Tikitiki View Post
      hello!

      let me start by saying I've never had an unhandled horse before until now. I have an approx 6-8 month old colt who was brought in from way out west and I bought him at a sale yard with no prior history.

      I've had him a little Over a week, and he will take food from my hand, we have done a bit of lunging (no head collar just in the round yard). He picked it up quickly and is very curious of me but he runs away from me and I can't pat him yet. My friend and I put him in the cattle crush to see if we could get close, and he was so relaxed. Not bothered at all! We could pat him all over, pat his legs, face, neck even belly! But the second he saw a rope/lead he flipped out. He's not afraid of my lunge whip, but a rope of any kind terrifies him.

      Is this normal behaviour to be ok with me touching him while he's in the crush? Totally relaxed. When he is in the paddock I can get close but he's scared of me patting him. The fear of ropes I'm putting down to a bad experience but I feel his fear of me in the round yard and lack of fear when he is in a crush doesn't add up, and I'm thinking he might be faking being afraid of me?

      any ideas as to what's going on would be great!
      The way you describe his reaction to ropes, makes me wonder if he hasn't been used in horse tripping. There are still some around who do that. {sigh} Even if he hasn't, you might need to approach him as though he had. Don't push him, and teach him that you and ropes are not an enemy. It will be a longer road than normal.
      “It’s up to you the voters to decide the future of our democracy. So get out and vote. ... As Abraham Lincoln said, the best way to predict the future is to choose it.” Professor Allan Lichtman

      Comment


        #4
        an approx 6-8 month old colt who was brought in from way out west and I bought him at a sale yard with no prior history.

        I've had him a little Over a week,
        might just be terrified, young horse who has not been handled but has been run through an auction then shipped across the land .... and only been there for seven days... nothing is stable for him... I suspect flight would be the first idea in its mind until it accepts its new home.

        We have gotten older horses who had been through multiple owners...the only way I could get one to settle was to load him in the trailer every day then drive around for a while returning him to the same paddock. It took about ten days for him to accept this is his home (He DID start to really enjoy the trips to the doughnut shop where the owners had a special apple fritter ready for him)

        This last weekend my daughter brought in her new colt, as yours he is nine months old but the breeder had worked with him, he had been handled often ... he just accepts every new thing as OK what's next.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by clanter View Post

          might just be terrified, young horse who has not been handled but has been run through an auction then shipped across the land .... and only been there for seven days... nothing is stable for him... I suspect flight would be the first idea in its mind until it accepts its new home.

          We have gotten older horses who had been through multiple owners...the only way I could get one to settle was to load him in the trailer every day then drive around for a while returning him to the same paddock. It took about ten days for him to accept this is his home (He DID start to really enjoy the trips to the doughnut shop where the owners had a special apple fritter ready for him)

          This last weekend my daughter brought in her new colt, as yours he is nine months old but the breeder had worked with him, he had been handled often ... he just accepts every new thing as OK what's next.
          That's really awesome! I don't think I would have been able to make the "coming home" connection and I'm said to have a knack for figuring out fearful horses. No one can argue the allure of a freshly made apple fritter!

          Comment


            #6
            The crush may have totally overloaded him and kicked him into "give up" mode. That is not going to be useful to you long term.

            This is a young, unhandled horse. You're asking SO MUCH of him. Back off and take your time.

            Comment


              #7
              Have you read Temple Grandin's book about animals (and autistic people like herself)? Animals in Translation.

              One of the things she discusses is that putting fearful animals in a tight hold, like a crush, almost always has an instantly calming effect on them. She talks about beginning to understand that as a girl herself, that when she felt overloaded by too much sensory information coming in, she would wrap herself tightly in a blanket and it had a calming effect. (It's the same idea behind tightly swaddling a baby).

              The book is a terrific read, and it provides a lot of insights.
              "The formula 'Two and two make five' is not without its attractions." --Dostoevsky

              Comment


                #8
                I'm reminded of some friends who adopted a child from another country. They flew out, met her, and brought her home in the span of a few days. She was a toddler, spoke no English, and they spoke very few words of her language.

                It took A LOT LONGER than a week for everyone to understand each other.

                You're asking this horse to do that, but moving to another PLANET.

                You really need to check your expectations.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Yes I would say the crush puts the colt in a situation of forced helplessness so he has to submit. Not going to translate to attitude loose and may not improve it.

                  Do you have other horses? He needs to be out with a herd to grow up and learn a routine.

                  Even foals with no bad experience are skittish about being handled at that age.

                  Get a trainer that understands babies to come out and help.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Wanderosa View Post

                    That's really awesome! I don't think I would have been able to make the "coming home" connection and I'm said to have a knack for figuring out fearful horses. No one can argue the allure of a freshly made apple fritter!
                    doughnut horse was five when we got him, he had been through multiple owners who were buying him to sell ... he was a rare at the time buckskin Morgan .... he could have played the part of Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron with ease as he was the same.

                    You have a youngster, there has been a lot going on his life already ... he just needs a calm place that can be his own

                    Comment


                      #11
                      You are asking a helluva lot from a baby who has only known you for a week.
                      Agree that the enforced Stand Still of the crush (assuming this is what we call stocks) is not going to work in the long run.
                      Give this baby T-I-M-E!
                      Wait to address the fear of ropes until he is relaxed in your presence - allowing you to touch all over his body & put on/take off a halter.
                      When all that is routine to him then introduce the rope. Toss it over your shoulder, carry it over an arm, let him investigate it without doing anything like attaching it as a lead.
                      You need MONTHS, not WEEKS to let him get used to you & (hopefully) start to look to you for confidence & to form any sort of bond.

                      Good Luck & keep us posted
                      *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                      Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                      Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                      Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Welcome to CoTH, Tikitiki. I'm sure you will do just fine with him. Give him time. FInd out his favorite treat (carrots? cut them lengthwise so they are LOOONG as possible) and see if you can get him to take it from your very long outstretched arm. Try sitting on the ground by his food pan.
                        WHen you are ready to put a break-away halter on him, consider adding a short length of lead rope - like a foot long - most of the TB farms around here do that. Makes it easier to get a hold of it. Again, when you and he are both ready.
                        SOmetimes it helps to almost turn your back on a frightened horse and "sidle" up towards the shoulder, not right at the face or neck. SOmetimes it is easier to touch a shoulder than a neck. Just watch those quick hind hooves LOL.

                        How did you get him into the round pen?

                        The old saying goes "Time is all the luck you need.". It's good advice.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Yes the inconsistancy is normal.
                          Spend some time sitting in the round pen with him, while you read a book. Let him come up and sniff on you, and give him a treat, then move away from him and do it again. Let him approach you and get rewarded. Then walk away, and stay standing, facing away. If he approaches, put your arm behind you to hand him a treat, and walk away again. If he has a favorite scritchy spot, maybe scratch it, then move away. Let him come to you.
                          . Eventually loop a lead over your arm, and repeat.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            As well babies have a sense of play. One way they play is to snort and run away from things.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              By your own words, this is a baby horse with NO HANDLING.

                              You're not going to take him from nothing to hunky dory with people in a week. Your expectations here are really unrealistic.

                              ??????

                              Comment


                                #16
                                Originally posted by Tikitiki
                                Maybe I have not been clear, I'm not trying to 'rush' him. I am feeling the need to defend myself from people's assumptions. He had what I thought may have been an injury, hence why we put him in the crush (so I could see if it needed attention. It didn't). I grew up with a family who are 'old school' country people. I don't want to do things they way they did. Colt has a horse friend and some cow friends so no I'm not leaving him alone. The 'advice' I'm getting is contradictory so I'm thinking this post may have been a mistake.
                                (...)
                                He was going to be dog food so I thought I'd give him a go. Not exactly the mark of an evil person, I'd say.
                                Well, you know how it is. Two horsepeople, three opinions. CoTH is no different. You haven't made a mistake in coming here, there are a LOT of folks on this board who really know their stuff. And - I know I have been helped in the real world by info folks here have provided.

                                Thank you for giving the little guy a shot at life. He just needs you to let him do the approaching. Please give him whatever time he asks for. It might be frustratingly slow, but in the end, you will have his heart, not just subservience. To have a horse who is happy to see you bring out his bridle is a nice thing. Give him time, and let him do the deciding, and eventually, he might even change his mind about ropes.

                                And please don't read animosity into any of the posts. Some folks here are just "straight shooters" and don't mince words, but that doesn't mean they are out to get you. Just like you, they are here for the horse, and are posting so they can help you, help HIM.

                                “It’s up to you the voters to decide the future of our democracy. So get out and vote. ... As Abraham Lincoln said, the best way to predict the future is to choose it.” Professor Allan Lichtman

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  You've had some good advice here already. I agree with a lot of it. Take more time with this horse. I'd hold off doing any round penning right now, don't ask him to "go away" from you, don't chase him. Just offer yourself up to be his friend. Tickle him. Touch him. You want him to WANT to be with you, to see you as comfort, to give him confidence. Be the person he needs you to be.

                                  So he's not haltered now? You will need to get that done, and leave a breakaway halter on him. Sometimes it makes it easier if you put some oral tranquilzer in his feed, acepromazine (atravet), to get this done. It will artificially decrease natural stress levels in order to get this done. Or get it done in your chute if you have one. With the "horse catcher" short bit of rope mentioned by Lorilu above. Use this to "catch" the horse (when you get to that stage), then put on a strong halter over the top of this, so that you can actually make sure he does not get loose from you when you are getting to actually asking him to lead and give to pressure from the halter. So he will wear two halters when you are working with him for a while, until you can easily catch him and put a halter on him, and he accepts this and will lead for you. Go ahead and feed him a treat, with ones like this, it's helpful to gain his confidence.

                                  Once you get him haltered, and have a lead rope on the halter, and have touched him and tried to be his friend, turn your back to him. Squat down to be smaller sometimes helps, or take a seat. You want him to approach you, and touch you with his nose, check you out on HIS terms. Once he does that, this is a sign that he has accepted you at least in the beginning stages. He will need to do this more than once. Notice that you haven't actually "tried" to "teach" him anything yet, you have not asked him to "go away", or yield to pressure, or other basic "training" goals. You are just "there". And you want him to touch you. You want to appear "non-threatening". But you are not going away.

                                  I bought a lot of PMU foals years ago when they were available in Alberta. They usually came haltered (done in a chute), and wormed (as well as you can worm an untouched foal- usually needed to be done again soon). Usually, you could count on them just being pretty much "untouched" by humans other than this, and usually pretty easy to get to be their friend without much problem. However, I bought one, a bay roan TB/Belgian cross filly, who had gone crazy in the chute at the sale (built for buffalo), and had kicked and thrashed her way into the sale arena. I bought her, and they ran her back into the pens. I went back to take another look at my new purchase. I identified myself to the handler/cowboy back there as her new owner. He said, "Good luck with that crazy bitch". I smiled and said "Thanks". I think they had had some issues with her. She is a bit claustrophobic, and sensitive. Her barn name is "Roany Pony". Her show name became "Sugar Frosted".

                                  I brought her home. She was terrified of ropes, and human touch. And humans. But she wanted to be a good horse, but she had some pretty solidly ingrained opinions and issues. It took a long time, several months. But she came around eventually. I think she had been "stung" by an electric prod during her handling before the sale, getting her to load, getting her to move through the chutes- which is fair enough to do this, and isn't a big deal for most horses, they get over it. She didn't. She is a very sensitive soul. When I started to actually be able to lead her, I had to use a lunge line. Because if I accidently touched her shoulder with my arm as we walked, she would bolt, and I didn't want to lose her entirely. To touch her, she had to know that you were going to touch her. Her bolt stopped before reaching the end of the lunge line, and I could creep back up the line, and reassure her that everything was OK. And touch her shoulder again on purpose. That is how sensitive she was/is. That was when we were at the point of trying to get from the barn to the round pen, without getting loose. Because if one like this gets loose, they are really difficult to catch again. When you get to the point of asking the horse to respond to pressure, lead and walk with you, you will need to use a rump rope, to put pressure on her from behind, so you will have two ropes to handle and to apply and release pressure, the lead rope AND the rump rope. Then I let my filly free jump a few poles on the ground, and she let me know that this was all going to be worthwhile, she took flight over even a small obstacle like she had sprouted wings, breathtaking form and power. So easy for her. I showed her for a while, hunters and jumpers, successful at the smaller shows I took her to, but she got more drafty as she got older. She was so intense and focussed that she didn't make mistakes, ever, and needed NO help from me, I just sat up there and steered into the lines, and put the reins on her neck to let her do her thing. She would jump anything in front of her, and down the lines in front of her. Then I used her as a broodmare for producing 3/4 TB offspring, who have all jumped extremely well too. Excellent mother, smarter than most people I meet, milk bag like a cow, easy to hand milk, supplied colostrum for TB foals too, adopted and raised an orphan for me (no milk but raised and cared for and protected the foal). Several times at a horse show, she would seek out unknown small children, who she felt were non-threatening. And she would adopt them, lay her head in their arms, and have her ears stroked. She was/is THAT kind and gentle.

                                  We have electric fences, a wire to keep horses away from wooden fences. At some point in her life, I bet she touched one, once. So since then, she thinks that most ANY long thin thing just might be electrified. This often includes lead ropes. She's 25 years old now. She runs my herd, they all respect her. She says where they go, and when. She may or may not be out front to lead them, but they all watch her. She never "disciplines" anyone, she just looks at them, and they immediately obey her wishes. I am in awe of her, always.

                                  I hope this story helps you with the job you have in front of you. Here is a picture of Roany's son, Razzberry.
                                  www.cordovafarm.weebly.com

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by Tikitiki
                                    Simkie, what do you think my expectations are? I didn't know I had any. I thought I was asking questions.

                                    I have ave only ever had adult horses, some with issues and some good fromday one. I'm trying to navigate this as best I can but I've never had a little one before. Jesus. Were you born knowing everything?

                                    im a pretty straight up person but there's some assumptions being made and Im perhaps better off learning on my own. Thanks to the people who have been helpful.
                                    Tikitiki, please lighten up. As much as you don't want to be attacked, no one else does either.
                                    “It’s up to you the voters to decide the future of our democracy. So get out and vote. ... As Abraham Lincoln said, the best way to predict the future is to choose it.” Professor Allan Lichtman

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by Tikitiki
                                      Simkie, what do you think my expectations are? I didn't know I had any. I thought I was asking questions.

                                      I have ave only ever had adult horses, some with issues and some good fromday one. I'm trying to navigate this as best I can but I've never had a little one before. Jesus. Were you born knowing everything?

                                      im a pretty straight up person but there's some assumptions being made and Im perhaps better off learning on my own. Thanks to the people who have been helpful.
                                      You said, "I've had him a little Over a week" and in that context your question can very easily seem to imply that you expected more progress in that time. It is far too easy to read impatience into that.

                                      I'd advise you to listen to Simkie, 2DogsFarm, and Scribbler. Give yourself and the horse a lot of time.
                                      No matter where you go, there you are

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        You are expecting this horse to go from feral to being okay with a rope in your hand, in a week. That's expecting too much.

                                        This baby horse has had no positive handling, may have been roped to pull him out of his herd, may have been moved with a sorting stick and swinging rope.

                                        Not only do you have to teach him the rope is okay, you very likely have to UNDO a whole lot of "things in hands are scary and I need to move away from them."

                                        You're right--horses aren't born knowing everything. That's the point. He doesn't know that the rope in YOUR hand is okay. That's something you have to teach him. And it's going to take longer than a week.

                                        Comment

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