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Re: [RC] Biting horse - Elizabeth Chase

I have a couple of things that have worked for me:
1) With the horse in sight and reach, I will get my 'mouth' (hands) busier on the horse's mouth than their mouth is on me.  The instant they withdraw their head, I quit. (Winning the 'made you move' game.)   
2) Horse can't bite what isn't within reach.  Back them out of your space. (same game) All you have to do is spin the end of a lead line, or make a figure 8 in the air. They will get the message.
3) If your back is turned away, it is fairly easy to 'spin' the end of a lead line or rope behind you.  When the horse tries to bite, it hits itself with the rope. (Dangitall.)
4) If possible, and in conjunction with the above, give the horse something creative to play with its mouth.
Try to be cheerful when you do these things, smile and laugh even.  If you feel negative emotions like frustration or anger, the horse wins the game (from their perspective.... they 'got' your goose, so to speak). 
 I have a mouthy little mare that was allowed to suck on her previous owner's shirt, and was 'over-imprinted' .... sometimes it is really obvious that she does not think she is a horse.  She will take over in a New York minute....   the smack and rope jerk corrections, especially with negative emotion, only made her aggressive.
Over time, I learned how to cope with her in a positive way. When she gets busy on me, I get busier on her muzzle. When she chews on her lead rope, I help her get more in her mouth until SHE spits it out.  To back her out of my space now only takes a look and a raised eyebrow. If my back is to her, I have a plan... spin the rope, kick up my heel, swing my arms to and fro, 'talk' with my hands exuberantly, and above all, know where she is at all times, so what she does is not a surprise. If she tries anything, it is not me that 'hit' her, she has run into what was already going on...   And make it very difficult for her to get my goose. 
If I am chatting with someone and one of my horses is on the other end of the line, they 'get' to put a foot on a 'spot' and keep it there until I allow them to move.  The spot can be anything... a leaf, a shadow, by a rock, a bucket lid, etc.  
Hope something strikes a chord and at least sparks more ideas for you,
--- On Mon, 6/15/09, Marinera@xxxxxxx <Marinera@xxxxxxx> wrote:

From: Marinera@xxxxxxx <Marinera@xxxxxxx>
Subject: [RC] Biting horse
To: ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Date: Monday, June 15, 2009, 5:55 PM

I am having a problem with a horse that has bitten people several times when they are standing  near her with their backs turned and she is tied. She means business because her ears are back. I want to wallop her in the face, but know I should not.   By the time you can get her untied and jerked around as punishment, the time frame for punishment has about run out. I would like to hear from anyone with similar past experiences.  Thanks,  Julie Suhr

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