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New horse not settling in very well

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  • New horse not settling in very well

    Got a new horse a month ago. He was super quiet when I tried him out. Vetting was clean. Now it's been a month and he still is not quiet. How long does it take for a horse to settle in a new home.

  • #2
    You need to look at the whole picture. You probably changed hay, possibly feed, turnout groups, that sort of thing. Figure out what they were doing and try to get his routine as close to that as you can.
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    • Original Poster

      Thank you for your insight. She went from no turnout to having 6 hours of turnout. Grain the same. Hay simalar but not the same. Bit the same, saddle the same she was in. Can having turnout be the reason? She is not acting nutty when turned out. Barn is not as quiet as the one she came from.


      • #4
        Its tough to say what can set a horse off. She could have been bonded with another horses at the old place. She may not understand what turnout is and not feel comfortable outside. Just keep trying different things until she settles. Since everything else is relatively the same it seems turnout could be the key. Maybe try even more turnout if possible or maybe buddy her up with someone. Maybe if she is out a lot she will be too tired to be silly!
        McDowell Racing Stables

        Home Away From Home


        • #5
          Did you do a blood test on it when you vetted him? How long was he vetted after you tried him? It might be that he was given something to keep him super quiet when you tried him out.
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          • #6
            Give him, three to six months to catch on. Keep your basics the same....repetition, repetition repetition', ....& she will catch on. Or it could take more time but after 3 months, you will have a base line of how he reacts.

            I have one that works on the 3 program...don't why but he does.........


            • #7
              Is she getting enough exercise and enough structure? You might have someone school her for you if you are not riding every day. Try to structure her barn life in a similar way to her life before she came (e.g., 3 feedings per day if that is what she is used to). I would try turnout with only one other horse, but for as many hours a day as possible. Make sure she has plenty of hay.

              We have a TB who has a lot of trouble with our relaxed lifestyle. We are not consistent about feeding times because of my work schedule. We leave the barn open so horses can come and go. He does ok here, but is much more relaxed at my friend's farm where everything is always done at the same time and in the same exact way. Your horse will learn to cope, but may need extra exercise to settle her brain enough that she can learn to cope.


              • #8
                Originally posted by vbunny View Post
                Did you do a blood test on it when you vetted him? How long was he vetted after you tried him? It might be that he was given something to keep him super quiet when you tried him out.
                That might be my guess too.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by goldponies View Post
                  Barn is not as quiet as the one she came from.
                  This can also be a huge factor in a horse settling in. It takes time to get used to the hustle and bustle. Since yours just moved in, it will take a while for her to understand that activity doesn't necessarily mean that her world is going to get turned upside down again.


                  • #10
                    Maybe your new barn is stimulating in ways that she is unfamiliar with.
                    eg. I bought some horses that were from the pacific north west that were so comfortable in indoor rings that the great outdoors filled with birds, trees, blue skies etc. made them feel very insecure for some time.
                    I have a green one now that is a doll if he is left to play and play and play in the turnout. He was considered spooky by his last trainer and he probably was because he has an active imagination and a sense of humor that some may not understand, for us he has been a saint as long as he can frolic and play.
                    The system of preparation may be that the horse was put out on the line for a good long while. Not my favorite way of getting a horse quiet, they build a lot of stamina and never learn to internally relax but it is a popular method. You may be able to gradually decrease the time on the lunge line until you only need it for times that the horse has been inside it's stall for inclement weather.
                    The change of feed, give your horse less and less protein, it is energy for them to burn. You may have to decrease the grain and supplements until you find the ratio that keeps them fat and shiny but does not give her excess energy. I have heard of horses getting high from certain rice brans so if this horse is sensitive to food changes this could be adjusted easily.
                    Lastly if your mare is a bit sensitive perhaps she was given hormones to produce a level temperament.
                    I would in all honesty ask the old owners/trainers what the protocol was when you bought her. If they are like most they want you to be happy with your new horse and will offer advice and assistance. I am always concerned when one of mine does not seem to adapt to a new situation and I am very forthright in offering advice to make the transition easier. Sorry I misread and thought your he was a she but my advice remains the same .


                    • #11
                      Is she coming into heat?


                      • #12
                        We just bought a horse and changed very little, but the change in barns was enough to give the horse ulcers.

                        You might want to check out that possibility.
                        \"I refuse to engage in a battle of wits with someone who is unarmed.\"--Pogo


                        • #13

                          I agree with the above poster. You could add an oz of Pro CMC to each feeding for 2 weeks and see if there is a change. It's like liquid Rolaids for horses. If there is a change, then you'll need to check into the ulcer treatments.

                          Also I would recommend free choice hay if you can to keep the horse busy in his stall with all the new activity that's going on. That chewing motion is settling as well.

                          Good luck.
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