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charliebrown

we brought our mini foal colt home and need advise on training techniques

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Hi All, I'm new to the forum. Our mini foal colt has been with us since 8/17.  He's now 5 months old.He's had to adjust to two different stalls. We got him for our 12 year old daughter who, eventually would like to drive him.

He is very sweet, but lately, is beginning to buck and I'm worried for my daughter.  Any advise would be helpful please, and thanks!

Edited by charliebrown

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Please click here to view our members Mini Horses, Ponies, and Tack for Sale ads!

Welcome to the forum :)

 

Is he bucking whilst being led around by your daughter ? 

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Yes, he started to buck when she put him on the lead. He went around a little, then he didn't want to listen and put his ears back and bucked.

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Good topic. Sounds like now is the time to nip some bad behavior in the bud. I'm assuming that maybe he was weaned early and you purchased only him and not his dam?
Was it obvious he'd been handled and was he fine and quiet with halter and lead when you got him? If moms not in the picture are there any other horses he's bonding with? 

At his age, it's time to get basic ground manners down pat. He should be learning to consistently walk willingly, to pay attention to you (not any other horses) and to respect your space, to whoa, back up and eventually trot on a lead. You should already be able to easily handle his feet and ears and he should quietly stand tied for grooming, bath or while you work close by -not out of eyesight.

The attention span at his age is only about 10 minutes so keep your sessions short and when you get a good response (even if you've just begun) end the session.
..always end on a good note. The main thing now is being consistent. He has to learn what is appropriate and to respect his handler. He may be small but he can hurt you, that little buck will lead to kicking out or rearing. I'm glad you are reaching out now before bad behavior progresses. Horses will do what they can get away with.

If your daughter can't keep him close and in check maybe you could work with him? For me, I'd keep him on a lead rope until he learns some manners.
I think at this point a long line would just give him the freedom to get out of your daughter's control and lead to him circling, running and bucking. If she's getting him out of a stall he has built up energy so this would be expected, he's not doing anything out of the ordinary.  It all goes back to basic ground manners. It's time to put cute to work LOL.

I would also suggest thinking about having him gelded.

p.s. don't leave a halter on.

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Thank you, Debby-LB!  He was born April 6 and we got him on August 19. He was already halter trained. He seemed fine on the lead,but sometimes had a lot of energy.

He is territorial with his food. We only give him a small amount of grain, as he's on pasture for most of the day. Because she's been staying late at school, she hasn't been able to handle him on a daily basis. Could this be the reason? We are in the process of building a barn for him. He is currently in a calf hut to keep him in overnight. Before he came to our hut, we had him in a nice sized stall for two weeks, as we were in the process of moving  She was grooming him in the stall, but couldn't do his hooves.  One time during his first week with us, he was eating in the big stall and my daughter nudged him to move over a bit and he bucked, hitting her leg, which hurt, quite a bit! Currently, we cannot tie him up anywhere to groom.

We intend on getting a doeling goat as his companion.  For now, he is alone. He was used to so many others before we got him. She eventually would like to train him to drive.  Are there any tutorials on beginning steps?  Thanks again!  

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by charliebrown
forgot to add something
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Perfectly said Debby. I would also suggest having him gelded and honestly I would do it sooner rather than later. It will make training him so much easier. As Debby has said , his attention span is very minimal being so young and keeping him as a colt is only going to make the training process harder. 

To me it sounds like he had a halter put on him before you got him, but had not been taught to "lead" very well. A horse that has been taught to lead correctly , should respect your space, halt when told to and be able to move forward on cue.

I would honestly get him gelded, it will be so much safer& easier  for your daughter to work with him. 

As he is only a baby, you have all the time in the world. He will continue to develop physically over the next couple of years, but very important you get his manners on the right path from the start. 

 

Keep us posted on his progress if you have time and ask away any questions you like , everyone's friendly here and willing to help :)

 

 

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charliebrown yes not having time to spend with him could account for the reason. All it takes is a little time and then he'll be fine, just try to set aside some time each day to handle him though or he will continue to get worse.  Here is a link I've had bookmarked for years, not specific to minis but still good solid information on ground manners and training. Click here.

It'll be quite a while before you'll start training him for driving but when you do Mindy Schroader has a wonderful book it's called Step by Step Guide to Training a Miniature Horse to drive. Here's her Website
Also, we have a wonderful driving forum right here with people to help you with any questions about that when you are ready. In the meantime if you have any concerns ask away!

Welcome to the forum!

 

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At 5 months, he's too young for lunging, the circles are too hard on the immature joints.    Your daughter is going to need to try to make a point of spending 10-15 minutes once or twice a day doing basic handling with him, all on lead for now; just basic starts, stops, walking, and teaching him to respect space.   I try to leave my horses alone while they are eating (at least their hard feed), as that is their time; but at the same time, they must respect me, and if I need to clean stalls or whatever while they are eating, I expect them to tolerate it, and not get pushy.   As he's only 5 months, he needs good nutrition to grow well, so should be on a growth formula feed til 18-24 months old; if he's a really easy keeper, than a ration balancer might be a better option for him; this is of course in addition to his forage (hay or pasture).  [If he's not had hard feed before, it might take a little bit for him to readily eat it, they are suspicious of new things.]

 

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