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shah
Gold Member

England

1356 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  08:53:17 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add shah to your friends list Send shah a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why do arabs have such low confidence when hacking out on their own compared to other breeds?? My old boy was terribly nappy on his own (got better but never got over it); every single arab I rode when I was looking for a new one this year had some sort of confidence problem when I rode them out on their own. And, surprise, surprise, my new boy is unconfident when hacking out on our own. He doesn't nap but it's like riding glue and you have to keep your leg on near constantly.

In the last few years I've only ever ridden one arab that strides out happily on his own (credit to Arachnid here) but why is this??? Even the 4-year old non-arab that's just been backed that we hacked out with last night was striding out more confidently than my 9-yr old arab. Why oh why is this? I'm so fed up riding something that just doesn't want to move forwards on its own - in my past I've had plenty of natives that never ever had this problem.

I do loads of desensitisation training, my boy is actually quite brave in scary situations, walks across bridges no problem etc. But I just despair at having to ride something that wiggles underneath me and rather go back than go forwards. I'm a confident rider myself but starting to feel like a pony-kicking thelwell girl again

What else can be done to improve their confidence??????

West Sussex
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debs
Platinum Member

United Kingdom
3218 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  09:38:29 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add debs to your friends list Send debs a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Never had that problem with Giz.... in fact the lead horse that came out with us when i backed him, started rearing and running backwards at the slightest opportunity, Giz would just walk on and leave him to reverse! I did walk him out , from a baby,for miles though... for about 2 years, was nice and slim! Was brave in all situations... except with a skip lorry, bless him. Mind you, Ali is brave but I dont think he will be like Giz... can be nappy just taking him back to field.Also very naughty on road, so much so that having to go back to leading in field. Shame, so much more interesting for him to be out and about... Good luck with yours,

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Caro23
Gold Member


United Kingdom
617 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  09:54:16 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Caro23 to your friends list Send Caro23 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Shah
I don't think that Arabs are less confident. Dulcie spooks but is very reassured by me saying all is okay. She is always keen to explore and loves to hack out. I actually chose her beacuse she liked going out on a hack on her own even as a youngster and I have always made sure we continued this so that she is confident with me. We often went and still go walking or running together as weel and this helps build confidence.
xx

Caro
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alethea
Platinum Member


United Kingdom
1526 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  10:37:50 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add alethea to your friends list Send alethea a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have to say ive never had any problems with hacking out arabs alone, infact i find them to be really quite brave
Maybe you have just been unlucky with the arabs you have ridden out.
Alethea
Aristotle Arabians
**********
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Roseanne
Moderator

United Kingdom
6708 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  11:14:36 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Roseanne to your friends list Send Roseanne a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Can you get him used to a long, bendy schooling whip? Mine all get used to one from the moment I'm on them. They've already learned the usual 'walk, trot, canter and forward (for greater speed/impulsion) so teaching them to go forward into a new pace at a tiny squeeze is an easy step. Then, and from the word go, they know that if they don't go forward, they will feel a short tap behind their rump. I think the reluctance is a habit, and you may have to be persistant, sitting back so you stay in a secure position if he starts to nap, but insisting quietly and confidently yourself.

Keeping leg on is, I think, a bit of a recipe for making them dead to the leg. They just don't notice it after a while if you always use leg, which is where the schooling whip comes in. It's not cruel as you don't 'hit' them with it, just tap them on.

Hope this improves for you.

Roseanne
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Pasha
Platinum Member


England
3622 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  11:52:12 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Pasha to your friends list Send Pasha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh dear Tabita - I have to say I have the opposite problem with my two boys lol! As soon as they're through the farm gate they are off on a mission and Pasha especially won't stop for anything, unless it's a nice view he wants to admire I must admit, that was one thing I loved most about Shesk when I went to try him - he bounded up the road, past a huge combine harvester at the side of the road and into a huge field where he's never been without blatting an eyelid! Mine LOVE somewhere new and usually only spook if I do the same boring hack and they are bored! Bless them!

I've only ever ridden one what I would call a nervous hacker before (non-arab) and he would be very reluctant to go forwards, stop and refuse to go on, very spooky etc etc.... My trainer said it was a trust issue (he didn't feel he could put his trust in me yet), so I worked on this in the school and hacked out with others (he was fine behind a friend) and within a couple of weeks we hacked on our own to a show no problem!

Edited to say I am making this sound easy, but it wasn't - it was bloomin hard work for a few weeks (one day it took me and hour and a half to get to the end of the bridlepath which takes 15 mins on my boys!)!

Maybe it will just take time for you to bond and him to put his trust in you?


Edited by - Pasha on 20 Aug 2009 11:55:32 AM
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Karon
Gold Member

England
1411 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  12:10:12 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Karon to your friends list Send Karon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've found them just the opposite - hacking out in company mine spook and mess about but are happy to go anywhere on their own even when they first start being ridden. Ash in particular, my oldest, is off on a mission as soon as I'm on board (well, usually when I put my foot in the stirrup but that's my own fault!) and the rest aren't far behind her.

Can't offer any suggestions as it's not a problem I've had to deal with.
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joanna_piana
Platinum Member


United Kingdom
3935 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  12:45:44 PM  Show Profile  Click to see joanna_piana's MSN Messenger address Bookmark this reply Add joanna_piana to your friends list Send joanna_piana a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Took Ishara out on her own for the first time this week and she didn't even notice there wasn't another horse. In fact she was happier cause meant she was in front whole way I hacked Shida for miles and miles on our own and she loved it. The two arabs I previously had on loan were also completely unbothered. Don't forget horses feed off the rider, is it because you've got it in your head that he doesn't like going out on his own so he's living up to your expectations - just a thought. Hope you sort it out I guess if he's recently moved and is new to you then it may take a bit of time to build confidence. Good luck.


Harthall Rashida RIP, Binley Ishara, Bouchan
Chorleywood, Hertfordshire
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shah
Gold Member

England
1356 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  12:56:42 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add shah to your friends list Send shah a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hmm, I rode twelve arabs before finding my new lad and they were all non-confident. That's 1 in 13 that hacks out on their own happily - quite a statistic... And I can add the other arab on our yard to that, he doesn't hack out very well on his own either...it's like riding glue.

We've had nearly two months together now and I can tell he trusts me on the ground, no problem with dentist, farrier, chiro etc etc, he'll walk past lorries, cows etc. When I've ridden my friend's arab he didn't behave like this at all so I know it's not me. But yes it was a very big thing for me when looking for a new horse, it HAD to be able to hack out on its own as I'd had enough of nappy horses.

Can't use a schooling whip I'm afraid (don't want to mention the reason why here), used a wip wop with my old boy successfully but again you can only use that when they stop and tuki doesn't actually stop, he is just extremely slow on purpose.

Big question - does he go back at the end of my trial period because of this

West Sussex
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debs
Platinum Member

United Kingdom
3218 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  1:10:56 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add debs to your friends list Send debs a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dont think 2 months is very long in establishing a bond, can you extend your trial period? Maybe he just isnt for you? If you are asking that question, think thats your answer. Were the 12 you rode ones you were trying out? Maybe they picked up on negative vibes, maybe just because they didnt have a relationship with you. Giz was always better for me, ridden and in hand. Also agree with Roseanne about keeping the leg on... does make them immune! Good luck

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rosie
Platinum Member


England
3662 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  1:18:08 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rosie to your friends list Send rosie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Shah,
We must have been lucky, as our Arabs have all been confident out hacking.
We work quite alot on the ground with our youngsters, & Michelle at the moment, walks Bertie (2 year old) out for about 1/2 hour on a regular basis going through woods, over streams, through fields, along quiet roads etc to give him confidence ready for being backed next year. He really, really enjoys himself & he loves to be in the lead watching all that's going on around him.
Good luck.
Lisa




Last picture courtesy of Sweet Photography
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shah
Gold Member

England
1356 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  1:30:32 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add shah to your friends list Send shah a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Agree that 2 months isn't very long and yes we've probably not formed a bond yet. Trial period is 3 months, it then goes into a long term loan. Might be able to ask to extend.

Have entered to do a pleasure ride in September (only 16km) as thought that might be a good trial to see how he copes and whether we can do it on our own. I know the route, it's quite local.

Also completely agree about not keeping leg on all the time, I really don't want to do that. I'm a reasonably quiet rider and I like to sit completely quiet while hacking (apart from my apaulling singing but that's another story...)

West Sussex
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Nichole Waller
Gold Member


England
1168 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  1:44:57 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Nichole Waller to your friends list Send Nichole Waller a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Shah,
Ozzy is only 4 and has been backed about 10 weeks. I've always ridden him with other horses. He likes to be in front most of the time (unless there are puddles...). Occasionally he gets what i call his backward head on and slows down and becomes reluctant to go forward. He doesn't nap either but i know what you mean about riding glue.

I carry a schooling whip and i only have to touch him with it and he instantly moves forward. I try not to keep using my leg. My theory is ask with your legs, then ask again and if no response a flick behind the leg with the schooling whip.

There is one particular route we do that he is more backwards / glue like than the others. This route goes through a farm and there are cows and lots of machinery for him to look at.

I put it down to a trust issue and of course him being young and am hoping he will grow out of it

I've recently (last week and again today) rode him on my own down to my friends yard which is a very short distance down the hill. He has been quite happy to do this, so maybe you could start off doing shorter distances with your boy and increase them as he gets more confident.

Also i think in hand work really helps. I'm going to start taking him out for walks on his own just leading him and see how we get on. I've only owned him since May so haven't had the chance to do a lot of the ground work that others on here have.

Hope you solve it soon.

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Pasha
Platinum Member


England
3622 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  1:52:38 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Pasha to your friends list Send Pasha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Tabita I am going to PM you x

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Zan
Platinum Member


Scotland
3213 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  2:51:43 PM  Show Profile  Visit Zan's Homepage Bookmark this reply Add Zan to your friends list Send Zan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think you've been incredibly unlucky with the Arabs you've looked at. You are describing the exact opposite of how I think of one, and most people who have replied here seem to agree. My first purebred was very laid back and confident and marched along all the time--he loved new places and could never wait to get round the next corner and see what was there. Zaharoff is much more spooky and highly strung than Zan was,(which I put down to the fact that he wasn't started till he was 7, just before I got him, and had been nowhere and done nothing till then), but from day one he has hacked out alone. His spookiness has made him challenging, but he has never been nappy,or not wanted to go out, despite being genuinely frightened of new things to begin with because of his lack of experience.

Is he just slow at walk, or does he liven up when you trot and canter? Maybe he is bored if you are walking a lot and needs a bit of variety? Lots of transitions can improve the walk if that is the problem.


Edited by - Zan on 20 Aug 2009 2:58:59 PM
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sazzlepants71
Platinum Member


United Kingdom
3536 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  4:51:51 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add sazzlepants71 to your friends list Send sazzlepants71 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
hi shah , time is a healer as they say! just wanted to say that ramak was a bit of a wuss @ hacking when we first got togther - but patience is a virtue and it took 6 months and he will go pretty much anywhere now (even walk over motorway bridge, v.noisy ) i get off though!

so dont depair!
think you have hit the nail on the head to be honest, its clearly a confidence thing and perhaps he didnt go out a lot by himself before he came to live with you?
i think your little excursion thats coming up will tell you more - it will be interesting to see what he makes of new surroundings on a ride!
if you are lucky enough to extend your loan time , do - especially if your boy ticks all the right boxes on other accounts
good luck xx

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Arachnid
Platinum Member


England
1872 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  7:47:07 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Arachnid to your friends list Send Arachnid a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think he'll just improve in confidence - I suspect from seeing him that hes done little or nothing before you acquired him.
Thanks for being nice about Spider - he isnt very confident and is still occasionally very spooky but he loves going out and likes being in front even with other horses (this is not always popular). I did (like Roseanne) carry a stick at all times for the first couple of years. I dont always now because he goes forward in any case -except when I'm having a lesson when I carry a long stick to back up my leg if necessary.
I think I would give him a bit more time. I will meet you at the top of the bostal if you like? Can do Sat morning or Monday. I am having a lesson with Hilary tomorrow at 5. Perhaps you should come and talk to her about Tuki and maybe get her to ride him for half an hour? If nothing else it is lovely watching her ride your horse as they all go beautifully for her! She might give you an unbiased opinion.


West Sussex
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Kharidian
Platinum Member


England
4297 Posts

Posted - 20 Aug 2009 :  8:59:12 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Kharidian to your friends list Send Kharidian a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Goodness, what a generalisation that: "Arabs have such low confidence when hacking out on their own compared to other breeds".

I can entirely refute that comment, from the experience with my gelding who will pretend he's spooked and try to get behind another horse in company but will pass ANYTHING when out on his own (both on known and unknown routes). If he is genuinely scared about something I give him time to study it from all angles so he can suss it out, tell him to "think about it" in a positive voice....and he'll go past. I can box out on my own to new areas with a map and he strides out confidently and loves it!

Perhaps you're perpetuating the problem because you're expecting the horse to be nappy/spooky? Maybe some in-hand walks would help, using consistent and positive voice commands, with you at his shoulder ands not in front of him.

Caryn

Kharidian (Prince Sadik x Khiri)........ Alkara Cassino (H Tobago x Rose Aboud)
aka "Roger".................................... aka "Chips"

The first image is from an original painting by Pat Shorto.

South-East Essex
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katherineepea
Gold Member


England
883 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  03:15:56 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add katherineepea to your friends list Send katherineepea a Private Message  Reply with Quote
mines always been great at hacking out alone and we've been doing it from the 1st day he arrived.
if hes not bothered he can be 'gluey' on the 1st bit out but soon wakes up after a canter!
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shah
Gold Member

England
1356 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  08:34:50 AM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add shah to your friends list Send shah a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Caryn, you'll have to understand that I only have experience of 'problem' arabs, my previous was a rescue with huge issues that we overcame together. If Arachnid and I had a pound for every strange arab owner that we have met during my journey to find a new horse we'd be rich now She had me ride Spider so that I would find out what it feels like to ride a 'normal' arab and that's what I have as a yardstick for myself now. I truly do not expect every horse to nap, in fact the whole of my being was wanting to feel a horse that strides out normally when I first got on Tuki.

I'm glad to hear that there are people who have horses that are wusses to start with and that they've overcome it (thanks Sazzle ) - I'm also genuinly glad to hear that there are arabs out there that hack out fine on their own from day one. Maybe in a few years time or so when I have some money I will be able to afford a good one. I'm afraid that, as with previous horse, I just have to work with what I have.

Zan - we're only allowed to walk this week due to having had chiro work done on Monday, and I had to do loads of walking to start with as he'd had 12 months off on grass before I got him and he's terribly unfit. He gets very uptight when trotting and he doesn't know what a gallop is (past issues with canter that I don't want to talk about on a public forum), he's agoraphobic and just stops when you come to a nice field whereas my old man would be off in a split second! I do loads of walking inhand, which works fine, as well as ground work and lunging in the school. It's been hard, he didn't even know how to lunge when I first got him...

Thanks for all your advice - it's genuinly helping

West Sussex
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Nut
Platinum Member


United Kingdom
2838 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  1:53:16 PM  Show Profile  Click to see Nut's MSN Messenger address Bookmark this reply Add Nut to your friends list Send Nut a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hello, pateience is a virtue as they say. I have two, one of them has hacked alone from day one and the other one prefers to be in company. He is simply happier in company when going off for a plod, if i insist he will go alone but its alot of leg work to get round the farm. BUT he has improved loads and so I would echo everyone else and say keep at it, its not arabs in general, and is more the exception than the rule. we have a couple of our yard that are the same, they prefer company(30 horses on the yard all a mix of breeds and types).

Hope it works out for you, let us all know how you get on x

www.ndlarabians.webs.com

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deebee
Silver Member


262 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  2:37:23 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add deebee to your friends list Send deebee a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi. Mine (admittedly only part bred!) has always been reluctant to go out. She will but I have to really boss her until we are heading homewards. It's not such a problem if we've gone out in the box; she likes to see new places.

It has become more apparent since I've been helping her come out of herself a bit; I have used clicker training, with 'free shaping' to let her know self expression is ok (she was traumatised too, and shut down). So now I'm using lots of positive reinforcement for when we're going away from the others. She's getting much better now that she knows something good is going to come of it! (i.e. an apple or a good graze at a favourite spot - she loves hazel!)
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baxter
Gold Member


England
1123 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  3:55:17 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add baxter to your friends list Send baxter a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I can only talk about one arab as only ever hacked Aurran alone and he is unconfident and can be spooky....it's frustrating isn't it...
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Kash
Platinum Member


England
3777 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  8:12:54 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Kash to your friends list Send Kash a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hey Tabita, sorry to hear you've been having a bit of trouble. I must say though Agonia's fab to hack on her own or in company- she has her moments of course,but I partly attribute it to time we spent doing things from the ground. As you know,she was unbacked when I bought her+apart from shows hadnt seen much of the outside world! We went for loooong walks inhand+generally had fun together-for 2yrs! We still go for walks now, its always fun! My opinion, for what its worth, is take your time+ enjoy every moment together. Theres a lifetime together ahead for you, so enjoy each step of the way! By the way, I too cant carry a whip. Lauren

 
Photographs by Emma Maxwell and Peter Grant
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BeckyBoodle
Gold Member


Australia
795 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  8:29:32 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add BeckyBoodle to your friends list Send BeckyBoodle a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The loan Arab I had before Eba was like glue on the way out and a runaway train on the way back, and spooked at everything. But his owner rarely rode him out on hacks so although he was an old boy he wasn't used to it.

Eba I have taken out for walks round the countryside since I had her at 16 months and although she isn't backed yet, is perfectly happy to go for a walk on her own with just me. She is another one that as long as you let her approach something new and figure it out, she will go past anything.

Hope you get it sorted.
B
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Bebely
Gold Member


United Kingdom
813 Posts

Posted - 21 Aug 2009 :  11:16:42 PM  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Bebely to your friends list Send Bebely a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Shah

I agree with much of what has been said before. Tamba is now hacking out happily on his own but early this year I honestly thought we would never get off the yard by ourselves.

We did loads of groundwork, then loads of walking out in hand. I then started riding with another horse, then without the other horse but with a friend on the ground. Eventually the friend fell back behind us and we could manage by ourselves.

Each stage didn't take very long but he seemed to need his security blanket before we could progress to the next stage. Now we can go out by ourselves and can tackle most scary things as long as I give him time to look at stuff, register it and cope with it before pushing him on.

He now will stride off down the drive happily and will turn off onto a new route all by himself with no hesitation. I have to keep my energy UP to keep him striding forward or we do get a bit sluggish but actually he is better in new places. Perhaps they are a bit more interesting. Keep up the good work. You'll get there.

Oh and keep a progress journal so you can remind yourself how far you have come when you have a glum moment


Bev
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