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debbiesshelties

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Hi all,

I am totally stumped on this one. I have a month old colt. Tiny little guy just barely 20". The problem is I can't stop him from biting. He isn't shy, loves his scratches but it getting crazy to go around with bruises, he bites hard!! I have never had a horse come at me with an open mouth. I have tried pinching his mouth and popping his shoulder and even stomping my feet at him. He is so little I don't want to get too rough but I don't want this to develop into a life time habit. All input greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Debbie

P.S. Yes, he has done this since birth.
 

Reignmaker Miniatures

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I have a biter too. At least he'd like to bite, but since I know he will try I am on gaurd for it. I never handle him without taking his inclination to chomp me into consideration. I am bigger and (I hope) smarter than he is so Ican avoid being bitten. I hold his halter so I can point his nose away from my arm while I pet him or pick up little feet etc. When he is a weanling if he still wants too 'play' rough I will be prepared then to respond with a great deal more firmness. Who he spends the winter with will be determined by how he responds to my discipline at that time. If he continues to be a bully I will house him with my older colts and geldings who will certainly adjust his thinking meanwhile it is just a matter of keeping my body parts out of his way
.
 
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minijoyj

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Try taking his little mouth in your hand & bite him on the nose. It has worked for me, these little boys are sometimes BRATS. Just hope he doesn't have poop on his nose. LOL
 

Candice

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All of our foals go through the bratty biting stage. The colts have been worse about it than the fillies, however they all seem to lose interest and stop around 3 mos of age. It seems to stop as quickly as it starts. I usually pinch them on the backs of their legs like Momma does when she gets irked.
 

debbiesshelties

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Thanks all,

I will try to keep out of his range and try pinching his back legs BUT no way is my face getting that close to his chompers LOL. I keep hearing the Jaws theme song when I see him.

Debbie
 

Candice

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Debbie, That is too funny because even though all of ours have outgrown it I do have one that hasn't yet reached that age and I often hear that song in my head when I go in to the stall. He's tiny too and has razor blades in his mouth.
 

bannerminis

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I had one that was very bad - like that I was his chew toy :DOH! Anyway I pinched him on the nose and at the same time basically shouted rather sternly "ah ah" like you might say to the kid. Eventually all I need was the ah ah for him to back off but he still tried a fast one on occasion when he knew I wasnt concentrating on him
 

Miniv

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I have a yearling stallion that does that. Now he gets a good pop on the muzzle, has slowed it down alot.
We don't "pop" our biters in the face.......so they don't get head-shy. We will pop them on their chest, shoulders or butts, though.
 

HGFarm

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LOL, he bites because he is a one month old colt!! They have to learn, just like everyone else, what is and is not accepted behavior. When they are naughty with their mothers, I have seen the mares really turn and bite them on the butt- like when they are nursing too hard or if they are being sassy.

Many many years ago, we had a QH mare that had a filly who was really being silly one day. The mare was grazing with her head down, and the filly took off playing, running circles around the mom. She came running by and kicked her mother in the head. Mama put up with it the first time- must have been an accident. Then she came by again and kicked at her mother, narrowly missing her head. The mare jerked her head up with her ears somewhat pinned, getting pretty annoyed. The third time the filly came by, the mare landed a back foot on her- not enough to hurt her, but enough for her to know NOT to run by and kick mama in the face any more!!!

They learn quickly but if the behavior keeps on, it will take longer to break them of it. I agree with Miniv too about not smacking their muzzle, but maybe a good one on the chest or even rear the second they are doing it.

But this is just natural behavior for a little guy- they are very mouthy, and a lot of it they outgrow too as they age and learn.

LOL about the Jaws theme, have had some of those myself! I swear one of my horses thought his name was really No Biting!! We also called him Piranha.
 

mini1

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Seems like most babies go through this. I think it is a combination of things, like humans, they want to chew on something when their teeth are coming in then I think it turns into play and just plain orneriness. If you watch them with their mama's and other foals they will do the same thing to them. All of ours grew out of it by weaning but there are a few who just don't want to quit or just don't mature at the same rate.

Years ago when we had Quarter Horses babies I read an article about biting. Basically, this article said that if a horse tries to bite whether in play or just being nasty, if you swat or swing at it then it turns into a game. They said the way to stop this was to put thumbtacks through a rubber band then put the rubber band around your hand (points out obviously). Then as you are leading or working with the horse, keep your hand in place so if they try to bite you, their nose hits the thumbtacks. If they hit the tacks, keep doing what you were doing and act like you didn't notice a thing. When they hurt themselves through no reaction from you, the bad behavior will stop. There is an immediate "punishment" but in the horses mind it is not from you.

I have used this on big and mini horses alike and it works!!

Good luck,

Kelly
 

Maxi'sMinis

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This has worked for me for several biters and ones that looked like they might bite if had the chance, even the biggies. When they approach me, before they have a chance to put there mouth on me when they get close enough, I take their entire muzzle in my hand. I rub the entire muzzle vigorously. When they try to back away or take their mouth out of my hand I hold them and continue to rub. They usually relax after a minute but I keep rubbing until their lips get kinda limp. If you do this every time they come up to you they think about it before putting their mouth were you can get ahold of it. It also calms a nervous horse. It is actually a T Touch method to calm a horse. I just found it also useful to discourage a horse from biting. One nice think is it does build a good relationship with your horse and doesn't cause head shying.
 

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