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Re: Newbie's First E-Ride

Read Susan's articles on avoiding the metabolic pull.  They are great and include advice on what/how to feed the week before the ride.  Good rule of thumb....remember that what the horse eats on Thursday is what is in the hind gut on Saturday.  I start with lots of hay and almost all you can eat soaked beet pulp (actually several small meals on Thursday of mostly beet pulp with LOTS of water).  Fat is a commitment that you should keep up with regularly.  It takes (I think) 3 weeks for a horse's body to begin learning to utilize fat in its system.  Anyway, read those articles.  They are GREAT! 
Our method for teaching a horse not to kick?  May sound silly but it works.  Please never feed a horse while a vet or farrier is working on them.  Bad habit.  Anyway, when the horse kicks at Nelson, he gives it an open handed slap on the rump (or thereabouts).  Doesn't really hurt them but the noise surprises them.  He continues to run his hand down their leg with a slap each time they kick.  Some decide they don't like it and give up within 2 or 3 slaps.  Some take longer.  But so far, they all give up and let him pick up their feet.  Not sure if you could apply this to taking a temp or not... I don't see why not.  OH, don't forget the sharp reprimand at the same time with the slap.  A loud NO or STOP THAT or that annoying "buzzer" sound I have seen some dressage instructors use....whatever noise or tone of voice you use to tell your horse that what they are doing is NOT acceptable.  Good luck.

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