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[RC] [RC] crupper instructions? - Lucy Chaplin Trumbull

My mare is shaped such that she needs a crupper.
Unfortunately, she is also the reactive type, so
crupper training was "interesting".

The first time I put it on during a ground working
session she was fine with me pulling on it standing
behind her, but as soon as I went around the front
and she felt it back there (and I obviously wasn't
the cause for the feeling), she took off across my
"arena" like a bronc, making donkey noises at every
buck. She bucked so hard and with so little brain
engaged, I was convinced she'd run into a tree (my
"arena" isn't fenced).

The reason I mention this, is because she *did*
get better... eventually :))

The way I trained her in the end, was to ride with
the crupper back there, but very, very loose.

The first few rides it was so loose it fell off her
tail. I'd ride around, occasionally yanking on it to
give her the idea that it was back there. As the weeks
went on, I gradually tightened it until one day we were
going down a steep hill and I looked back and it was
doing its job - and she hadn't noticed.

Occasionally she'll start to scoot from it, so I'll
reach back and yank on it while rubbing her butt,
to show that it is *me* doing that. This seems to

Since our initial training, I've had two "incidents"
involving the crupper.

One was riding in the dark and I got hungry so
unwrapped a bar, she heard the rustling noise and
not knowing what I was doing scooted her butt a bit
in fright, felt the crupper "bite" and went into a
bucking fit (I had the reins and a crop in my mouth
at the time, while trying to unwrap the bar, so it
was pretty interesting. I did manage to get her

The second involved her being slightly uneasy to
start with (we were somewhere a yappy-dog had "come
at her" the week before), she was grazing, me on top -
daydreaming - and *my* dog snapped a twig behind her.
She again scooted in fright, felt the crupper back there
and went into her bucking routine. I didn't come off,
exactly (keeping in mind I, again, didn't have my reins) -
instead I did one of those graceful dismounts where you
land on your feet, but then have to take several large
steps to regain your balance. I landed on dry ground,
but the large steps got me into a pond. <sigh>

Anyway, it has been fun. Just take it slow - if Mouse
can get used to a crupper, any pone can.

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Lucy Chaplin Trumbull
elsietee AT foothill DOT net
Repotted english person in the Sierra foothills, California
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