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Anonymous asked in PetsOther - Pets · 1 decade ago

How can i get my mare to be generally more friendly?

She usually does pretty good when I'm working with her, but when I go out in the pasture and just try to love on her, she pins her ears and walks away or swings her rump towards me. I really want to have a partnership with this horse, but that can't happen

until we become friends.

Also, she has lately been refusing to walk forward when I pull on the lead rope. Any suggestions?

9 Answers

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    try to give her some treats...then try to pull the lead rope again.

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  • 1 decade ago

    How often do you work with her? If you put her to work every time you see her, she's going to get either bored or sour, which explains why she doesn't walk forward on the lead rope. Just thought I'd throw this out there.

    To start with, your mare is dominant, but a lot of horses are. I've seen some good suggestions and real bad suggestions here. You aren't going to strengthen your relationship by talking to her, spending time with her, or giving her treats. Horses do not think like people!! It's hard for humans to face this. Horses don't understand English, they don't understand our gestures, and they certainly don't read minds. So the only thing left to do is to learn the horse's language so they can UNDERSTAND you.

    "Join-up" by Monty Roberts is close to what I do with my own horses. I strongly suggest you get his book "The Man who Listens to Horses" and read it. It'll change your perspective on horses forever. It even gives you a step by step guide on how to join up with your horse at the end, which sure beats me explaining it to you over the internet =)

    If you are alpha over your mare, and you both having a trusting, loving relationship, her attitude towards you will change. She will even run up to you in the pasture to greet you. Research equine behavior and check out methods Professional horse trainers use such as Pat Parelli, Clinton Anderson, Monty Roberts, etc.

    Some rules of thumb: Obviously, never ever bring harm to your horse. Don't even 'pat' him when he's done something good, because a horse's skin is so sensitive that a simple pat actually feels like a slap. (Imagine what a whip or someone hitting them feels like!) Instead, use gentle strokes and a soothing voice.

    Don't let your horse walk all over you. Also don't let your horse be lazy and not listen to you. If she ever enters your personal space uninvited, back her out of it. You can go into her personal space because you are alpha.

    Always be soft and calm around her. Dont ever come up and immediately touch her on her body. Always start at her nose, let her sniff your hands. This is how horses greet each other.

    When riding, do not jerk or pull on the reins or kick her sides. If she's ever being "stubborn", about 9 times out of 10 it's becuase she's confused and does not understand what you're asking her. It also helps to look at the reins as reinforcement, not a training tool. She should be able turn, stop, speed up, and slow down all from JUST your seat and legs.

    So read up on equine behavior and get that book. It's a start at least. Never blame your horse on anything she does - It's always the owner's fault. No matter what. (I'm not criticizing you, this applies to every horse owner) Horses are the greatest teachers ever - greater than me, greater than any horse trainer. So spend time with her, especially watching her in the pasture, and observe the horse's body language. Trust me, you can speak it if you know how.

    So let your mind wander a little, imagine, dream, and reach for the unreachable. You can do it

    Source(s): horse owner/trainer
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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You obviously have a very dominant mare. Don't worry I have one too, and she does the same thing. I've tried just about everything, and the thing I find works best is natural horsemanship. No I don't mean spending a gazillion dollars on Parelli. I just love Clinton Anderson's Downunder Horsemanship. This is a really great book and explains everything you'll need to know, plus its not too expensive to buy only like $20~. Then the supplies aren't too much if you use your own stuff and then just buy the Handy stick. His stuff works really well on stubborn mares and really builds up a beautiful relationship. Try it and I promise that you'll like the results you get! Good luck!

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    It looks likes you guys need to make sure that YOU need to be the boss, not your horse. Very good methods of establishing that kind of respect is the Join -up method by Monty Roberts and also the natural horsemanship by Pat Parelli (they both have websites) are very good and it's effective!!!

    Good luck!

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Join up with the horse..... When she pins her ears at you, make her run. I know it sounds mean, but it makes them trust you in the long run. Put her in a round pin and make her run, change directions, go through all her gates, and she will give you three signs when she wants to be your friend. She will turn her inside ear to you and listen to you. She will lower her head. And she will start chewing when she wants you to let her stop. Then let her stop and turn aroundso that you are not looking at her. If she walks up to you then she trust you and want to be your friend. That means the join up was successful. If she doesn't come up to you then start the process over.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Try to get to know her better, stand by her pasture/stall and talk to her, even like a human. Ex: hey, how you doing girl.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Try forming a bond with her. Spend time with her, talk to her, do t-touch and groom her. You can also do join-up. Hope I helped. Happy New Year!

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  • 1 decade ago

    when you feed her stop and talk to her and spend more time with her

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Heres a guid that will help with any horse bonding problem you have........

    The bond is created away from work, pressure and demands. The bond is created during "herd time" with your horse. Once you have a bond with a horse the partnership will be obvious in training and in all aspects of working time with your horse.

    You will need to spend "quality time" with them that has no demands, agendas or expectations. Sit in the pasture with them, sit in the stall with them, hang out in an arena with them, find a time and place where you are animals together and that's all that matters. No grooming, no massaging, no spatial considerations. Allow the horse to investigate you, smell you, nuzzle you, lick you, while you offer your hand to gently rub their face or softly blow breath into their nostrils. Talk, sing or read to them. This is opening the door to trust and unconditional love. The horse needs to know that you are fully with him in the present without intellectualizing or reasoning or thinking, just being in his space and his time. Let him lie down and roll if he wants, let him wander and smell everything, let him graze and you do what you enjoy doing.

    You can also just take him for a walk like you would your dog. Instead of riding him around, walk him around on a lead and explore a place together. Go across a creek together, stand in the water together, jump a little log together, wind through some trees together, go over a bridge together, then just take a break together. Their comfort zone will always include you if you take this approach.

    When you go out to get your horse, whether you are bringing him in from pasture or from his stall or a pen, meet him with an open hand and allow him to smell you and come to you. Talk to him and stroke his neck, then put the halter on and ask him to walk with you by placing your hand on the T joint of the halter where the noseband meets the cheekpiece. Let him feel your hand against his face as you walk together. Never drag your horse or walk too far out in front of your horse while leading him (with halter and lead or bridle), this is a total disregard for him and a sign of disrespect and disconnect. His head and neck should be right with you or slightly behind you all the time and you can add strokes, pats and talking. You are always a team working together. Think of it as holding hands while you walk with a special partner, walking in unison with your horse is a warm feeling of physical connection and pride that you have for each other.

    Once you have your horse tied, start your grooming first by checking his feet. His feet need to be cleaned out and check his shoes. If all that is in order, then you can move on. I like to clean out my horse's nostrils with a damp rag and wipe around his mouth and eyes to get rid of dust, dirt, pollen and crud from the flies and grazing. I then apply InBalance essential oil around his muzzle and nostrils, over his cheeks and all over his ears. The aromatherapy will be working while I am grooming and tacking up. He loves the oils I use and goes off into horse dreamland while I am preparing to ride. It also acts as an insecticide which we both like during these hot summer months.

    Bonding can also come from your hands as you help relieve discomfort and pain. Depending on my schedule, I will groom him and may give him a couple of little massages and stretches, or go into a lengthy massage and stretch session or administer some acupressure and magnet therapy before saddling up. I may just have enough time for a mouth massage, or I may work on his neck for a few minutes, or I might focus on loosening his hips. Get you hands really involved with your horse. Become a horse detective with your hands and feel the tone of the muscles and notice what they need to be healthy, notice the knots or adhesions, notice any areas of heat and lightly massage any little swellings away. If he has bug bites I like to put cooling rubbing alcohol on the welts.

    Already, with this routine and this approach I am creating a deep friendship. I am giving him comfort, relief, relaxation, full trust in my presence with him, and an understanding of my good intentions. My touch is always soft but present and in full contact with his body. If I do scare him accidentally or make a mistake, I apologize to him and stroke him telling him "I'm sorry, I made a mistake". They do understand and appreciate the apology. Horses are forgiving when you are open to ask for forgiveness. They make mistakes, we make mistakes but the key is in the trust through those mistakes and a positive recovery.

    So, while you are riding or on the ground, massage the horse’s withers and gently stroke his mane at the bottom of his neck. This is the area where horses nuzzle each other in the wild and it is a calming space. I’ve also used it in stressful situations, such as when a big truck or motorcycle goes zooming by us on a road and it has worked beautifully. I hold the reins with one hand and stroke with the other and talk to my horse. This technique will only deepen the bond between you.

    When you are done riding and exercising, and after you dismount, wait just a minute and reward your horse with lots of praise and rubbing between the ears. They love it and appreciate it and will want to give to you again. Then loosen the girth or cinch, run up the stirrups if you are riding English and take your horse by the noseband and ask him to walk forward with you. Remembering your released back and ground exercises.

    After taking the tack off, allow your horse to go into his stall or pen and roll or urinate or drink, whatever. Then when he's done you can take him to be washed off and cleaned up. Use warm water anytime you wash off your horse as you do not want his back or any part of his body bracing against the cold water. When you finally put him away leave him with an apple or some carrots or a treat in his feed bucket or tub. I like to feed treats in their feed tubs instead of by hand whenever possible, especially if they are busy mouthy types.

    Through all of this you will learn so much about how your horse expresses his or her self, how they communicate, what they like and don’t like in a relationship, their sensitivities, their curiosities and their true spirit whether it be laid back or busy.

    If you have this kind of approach to your horse partner every time you are with them, whether you have plenty of time or are in a hurry, you will be creating that bond that you have been looking for. They will come to you whenever they see or hear you, they will call for you, they will melt in your presence. What an honor it is to have a loving respectful relationship with a horse. I look forward to it everyday.

    I just want to piont out that angels answer is from a book called Heartland and as much as i wish it was Non fiction it is not,it is make-believe!A horse should be respected and loved not wiped and beatend!Its a cruel world for them and this book seems to make everything better!The make her run could just make her more angry and stubbern with you!She could get scared and Freeze, Run, or Fight! Niether will help you bond!Good luck and trust your instincs to what to do and what not to do!Some things can work with one horse and not another!I wish you luck a fun! Now if you will excuse me my horsesare waiting to be fed!and not very patiently if i can add,lol! -Aminal

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