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  1. #1

    Default New horse and loss of confidence

    I brought a new horse in November after trying him twice.

    We have been out hacking where he can become quite upset, cantering on the spot, has bucked. Speeds off and wont slow down, if we see another horse when out he is desperate to get to it.

    After the first incident I have lost confidence and now get very tense which makes him worse.

    He gets upset quite easily, is constantly looking at everything. I have put him onto a calmer - calm and collected, im not sure this has had any effect.

    I am now scared to ride him. I get really worked up, feel sick and find excuses why i carnt ride. But then beat myself up for not riding.

    We are waiting on a correctly fitted saddle to be sure that he is comfortable.

    How much it is settling in/trying it on?!

    Does anyone have any advise please?

    He is kept out nearly all the time unless very bad weather.

    He is fed hi fi good doer, pony cubes and fast fibre. I have cut the hifi down.

    He is also difficult to put a bridle on.

    We have tried some parelli which i think has made him respect my space more. He is quite lippy and in your face.

    At the minute i have planned to get someone experienced to school him and then give me lessons daily for a week or so.

    I worry about it constantly and cannot see myself doing what i wanted - RC, hacking and funrides.

    Maybe he just needs more time and im being inpatient.

    Any help gratefully received.

  2. #2
    Sport horse
    Join Date
    Aug 2016

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    I've had mine almost a year, and only now would I say that we've properly got to know each other and settled together. He was a pig when I first got him, and I spent most days just lunging or grooming him instead of riding. Eventually got to a 'ride it or sell it' stage, and decided to try to ride through it. I lunged him for 30 mins (ish) before I rode, and then rode for an hour - hour and a half. Did this seven days a week for a month, easing off the lunging until it was just a walk, trot, canter before hopping on. Never rode him straight from the stable, only when he'd been out. We had lessons every week and always hacked with safe, experienced people from the yard.

    And it worked. He still has his moments, but I know him SO much better, and now tend to find his outbursts funny rather than silly.

    This time of year is always always hard. It sounds like your plan - getting someone to school him and teach you - is the best way to go and a v wise decision.

    But don't lose hope - I bought mine for similar activities and thought I'd never ever be able to do anything, but actually he's turning into a fab little horse. Just really crack on, get all the help you can and persevere. Do you have any places/friends near you with good schoolmasters that you could ride in addition? That might get your confidence up again.

    I don't really think calmers have any affect, unless you know what's missing in your hay/grass. I put mine onto a calmer, it worked for the first day then had no effect at all. Personally I'd take him off anything apart from chaff and fast fibre - mine's only on chaff and sugar beet (and ad lib hay) and has quite a high workload.

    It's so easy to get disheartened, but try to look for the light at the end of the tunnel. You could try setting yourself a limit on how long you'll try for... I said 3 months and if we couldn't work it out, I'd sell him or return him to the dealer.

    There are lots of people on here with much better advice, but hopefully this'll show you that you're not alone!

  3. #3

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    Thank you for your reply.

    I have struggled to get going with him really due to getting him at the start of winter. So im hoping in summer when we can get out more we will crack it. I really do just need some reassurance that it will be ok! I have said if we still arnt getting on by November this year then i will sell then at least he has had a chance then. I have been worrying about the molasses coating the chaff but the sugar in this is nothing compared to whats going to come in the spring grass!

  4. #4
    Old nag
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    W. Yorks

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    The sugar in the grass is not the same as molasses, so rather than worrying about the future grass why not take him off the molasses chaff? I used to have a horse that was severely intolerant of refined sugars such as molasses but was absolutely fine with spring grass.
    If you know that the saddle doesn’t fit correctly it is not sensible, or kind, to ride the horse in it. Better to wait for your new saddle, this behaviour sounds like a pain reaction to me.
    "Don't LET him do that"

  5. #5

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    Is he kept alone or with other horses?
    When you had trouble out hacking, were you riding alone or in company?
    Do you have an instructor?

  6. #6
    Not slacking-multitasking
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    How old is this horse/what's his history?

    and dtto faracats questions.

    I would certainly get someone experienced to assess him for you (and hack him out as well as school him if that is what you want to do).

  7. #7

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    A saddle fitter has said that his current saddle should not be causing any pain as is an ok fit with a prolite under it. It does however not make me feel very secure and doesnt hold me in a very good position so our new one arrives next week.

    I think i will find an unmollassed chaff and see if that helps.

    He is in a field with a pony but we have other horses on the yard.

    He has been more silly in the company of other horses when hacking but i have only hacked alone a handful of times before i got worried.

    I have an instructor yes. She is going to school him for me and give me lessons and knew my old horse so knows my capabilities

  8. #8

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    He will be 8 in april but acts very babyish. He was brought as a 4 year old by the lady who i brought him off she brought him on but did allow him to rule the roost a little.. she hadnt done much groundwork with him and she had never lunged him before the vetting. She had done some hunter trials on him. Hes 16.3 and a wide lad. Appy x poss draft or somehing heavy.

  9. #9
    Not slacking-multitasking
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    a lot of horse to have been allowed to possibly rule the roost then! We have a few appy owners on here who have found them a bit 'different' if that is his breeding. I'm not a fan of parelli but I would think good groundwork is definitely a requirement. You are very new to each other and some horses can take longer to settle (and you never really realise that they are unsettled until a year later you go oooh that's what you're really like!)

  10. #10

    Default Re: New horse and loss of confidence

    Thank you for ur support. He is already less bargy so hopefully we will get there! I tried the parelli with an open mind but im not sure if we will continue it. He is a very genuine, kind boy i just dont think he has been taught how to handle himself very well.


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