Wanting to enter the world of driving.... but how?

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Bullseye

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I would love to get my horse started on driving, but I'm not sure where to begin!

I know that many start this process by just getting the horse comfortable with all of the tack... But what kind of harness is good to start out with, and with what kind of bit?

My pony is still a yearling, so I won't start for a little while, but I'd like to know ahead of time


Thanks!
 

targetsmom

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There is a lot you can do now, and not all of it involves your yearling. First off, I would read all I could about driving, staring with old threads on this driving forum, which will lead you to some good books. I would also suggest that you take some driving lessons on a well broke driving horse/pony/or mini. A local driving Club that you can find through the American Driving Society website should be able to help out there (my link won't work so Google it). Doesn't matter the size of the equine, but any experience will help.

Now for the yearling, I would just lead him around in a halter and lead everywhere you can think of and get him used to all kinds of things (de-sensitize him, in other words). Traffic, loud noises, dogs, bridges, wading pools, umbrellas, etc..... training for halter obstacle and showmanship won't hurt either.

Good luck! If you have specific questions, don't hesitate to post them on here, but a lot of the basics have been covered already, including chosing a harness and/or bit.
 
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littlebigspots

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I recommend reading Carriage Driving: A Logical Approach Through Dressage Training. It is full of great info about training, where to start what you need. It's about $20 on amazon.
 

Sandee

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I second Targetsmom about taking some driving lessons. I read lots but I learn quicker and retain things longer when I actually get to DO them. So joining a club; going to driving events; and driving someone else's horse are way up on the list of learning.

As for you horse, work with him so he learns the voice cue, Whoa, and then so he will stand. So everything you do with him as a yearling is a building block for eventually driving. Halter class will expose him to the show arena and teach him to stand in place. Obstacle class will teach him to trust in you that scarey objects don't eat horses.

In his second year you can start with getting him used to the harness equipment. Right now you should just be working with him and having fun.
 

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