Home Current News News Archive Shop/Advertise Ridecamp Classified Events Learn/AERC
Endurance.Net Home Ridecamp Archives
[Archives Index]   [Date Index]   [Thread Index]   [Author Index]   [Subject Index]

RE: [RC] great ride, if only i can catch him..... - Melissa Alexander

I got a three year old gelding this fall who didn't like to be caught and
haltered. He was reasonably friendly if I was in the paddock without a
halter or rope, but grumpy and evasive if he thought I was going to try to
catch him. I could, however, use grain to catch him. That's what his prior
owner did, and he stood quietly enough -- though his face was very grumpy --
while she haltered him.

That wasn't acceptable to me. I don't chase horses, and I don't want grumpy
faces (or high heads) when I halter them. I'm a clicker trainer, so I
trained him to come to me and put his own darn head in the halter! Ears
forward, of course.

If I were you, first I'd just go into the pasture with treats the horse
likes that can be tossed. If the horse takes a step in your direction, toss
a treat his way. Repeat, gradually requiring him to come closer to you, a
step at a time, before you throw a treat. Once he's coming to you without a
halter, repeat the process while you have a halter with you.

I then progressed to having my horse target the halter. Each time he touched
it, he got rewarded. Eventually I positioned it so the nose hole was open,
and he had to push his nose through to get rewarded. At the same time we
worked on me being able to walk beside him and toss a rope over his neck
without his moving away. Then I worked on pulling the nose loop on, then on
to tossing the strap behind his ears, and finally to putting it all the way
on and leaving it there.

It sounds like a lot, but I trained Blue to do this in a total of six short
sessions in four days (spread over six days -- I had a weekend away in the
middle). Not really time-consuming considering it's a lesson he'll need for
the rest of his life. After that I reinforced him variably for coming to be
haltered. Did that for probably a couple of weeks. I pretty much took it for
granted after that.



Ridecamp is a service of Endurance Net, http://www.endurance.net.
Information, Policy, Disclaimer: http://www.endurance.net/Ridecamp
Subscribe/Unsubscribe http://www.endurance.net/ridecamp/logon.asp

Ride Long and Ride Safe!!


[RC] great ride, if only i can catch him....., LTYearwood