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When my horse doesn't agree with what I am trying to make her do, when ...
  1. #1
    Full Member lilly12's Avatar
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    Horse wont stop backing up...

    When my horse doesn't agree with what I am trying to make her do, when she is not getting what she wants, she starts backing up and I can't stop her. She eventually backs up into things and then bolts or bucks because she gets startled. This is when I am riding, usually during the beginning of the ride, but not always. While most horses will buck or rear when not happy, my horse just starts backing up. I've tried turing her head, making her turn, but none of this works... Other than this she is typically well behaved. Thanks for any help!

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    Full Member Ilovechippy's Avatar
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    My horse does this when he's confused. If something is unclear to him he'll back up until I give proper direction, and then he moves forewords without any issues. But, many horses will do this from pain. Have you had her teeth back and saddle fit checked lately? That would definitely be something to look into. Also, has she always done this? If it's new, pain would be my guess.
    ILoveMyLacy likes this.

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    My guy will do this, when his brain goes *zap*. For example, we could be out trail riding and we are out a little longer than normal, and he has had enough. He'll start frothing and he'll pull stunts like backing up, putting Micheal Jackson's Moon Walk to shame. Or we could be out on a Fox Hunt, and I wont let him go over a fence that every other horse is going over, and he'll pull another Moon Walk stunt. Once, I had to have the Head Huntsman come and get us, he had to grab the reins on my bridle and lead us out of the area.

    I have to just quiet down while on his back. Relax, and don't put up a fight. When his brain goes *zap* there is nothing much I can do, until he comes out of it. I don't tense up, I let everything in my body just quiet down. I stroke his neck, talk softly and quietly. I'll let him just stand there if need be. I never get loud, I never hit him, I don't tense up - my body language escalating only escalates the situation.

    Our horses reflect our emotions. If you get upset, it'll make the situation worse IMO and IME.
    "A good rider blames themselves, a poor rider blames their horse"
    "A good rider conforms to their horse, a poor rider makes their horse conform to them"
    Ian Millar
    GPO - PR!

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    Senior Member+ JStorry's Avatar
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    Flint backs up when he doesn't want to go near a scary horse eating monster, its generally something I can't see. When he does that, I turn him around and back him past whatever he is scared of, then carry on. If he wants to go backwards its just fine with me, but we will do so on my terms. In my case I know its not pain, but just a young horse being a brat.
    Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.

    Rest in peace Flint. You'll always be the best part of me. July 4th 2008 -June 11th 2013

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    Full Member lilly12's Avatar
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    We have ruled out pain, weve even had her checked out by the vet. She has done it ever since we first got her, and she only does it when she doesn't get what she wants. For example, if we pass by a field of horses she wants to go say hi, but when I don't let her she gets mad and instead of bucking and such she just keeps backing up. I would let back up till she don't Bu sometimes she backs into things such as trees and fences and other objects. If I try to stop her from backing so she won't run into these things she get even madder and backs up faster. :/ I'm just afraid shell do this and end ip harming herself because I can't stop her, and I don't feel like having to get off her 10 times a ride to stop this, I would like to be able to control her.

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    Senior Member+ JStorry's Avatar
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    Personally, I would not get off her. You doing that is teaching her 'if I back up, rider gets off'
    I would just let her back up and steer her away from things that could hurt her. Don't let her stop backing up at her choice, make her go further than she wants to. If it's at all possible for you to turn her around, do so and make her go backwards past where she didn't want to go.
    Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.

    Rest in peace Flint. You'll always be the best part of me. July 4th 2008 -June 11th 2013

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    Does the horse do this with other riders as well?

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    Full Member lilly12's Avatar
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    I am the only one that rides her, so I don't know if she would with another rider... and I don't like to get off. the only reason i do is if she is going to run into something potentially dangerous as i can not stop her or turn her. If the path is clear I just wait it out. It's like she blocks out everything when she backs up and just wont listen

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    I encourage going back strictly to groundwork with your horse. It sounds like there may be some leadership issues here that groundwork could help. Do lots of direction changes, work on the whoa, work on coming forward on invitation and going backward on invitation, and changing gaits in the roundpen or on a lunge line. Do not allow this horse to enter your 'space' at any time. This horse is using backing up while under saddle as evasion. Please stay safe. This is a scary situation for you and your horse until you get it 'fixed.'
    And On The Eighth Day GOD Said: "Horses Shall Not Trot." And the Good Horses Listened. MelissaH



  10. #10
    Full Member lilly12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TWH Gal View Post
    I encourage going back strictly to groundwork with your horse. It sounds like there may be some leadership issues here that groundwork could help. Do lots of direction changes, work on the whoa, work on coming forward on invitation and going backward on invitation, and changing gaits in the roundpen or on a lunge line. Do not allow this horse to enter your 'space' at any time. This horse is using backing up while under saddle as evasion. Please stay safe. This is a scary situation for you and your horse until you get it 'fixed.'
    Yeah i feel she does not fully respect me. i actually thought about that a few hours ago and just got back from working on her whoa and crowding issues. Her ground manners definitely could use some work... Thanks for the help!

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