Rory's 1st saddling!

This gorgeous black stud was part of the bucking stock string that was at the Yakima Feedlot in December. Will enter training the beginning of May 2006.

Rory's 1st saddling!

Postby Juliane on Mon May 29, 2006 9:07 pm

During tonight's exercise session with Rory, I decided to add a twist to the scenario! I felt like Rory had come far enough along in his trust to handle being saddled. I tied him up to the horse trailer and brushed him down. He is enjoying human contact more and more each day and I fully believe he will be a perfect kid's horse or pocket pony! He definitely would have been my 'dream pony' when I was a kid!

After I was done brushing him, I pulled out my saddle and pad. I set the pad on him after letting him sniff it. He is really curious and interested in things, even if he's frightened. This has helped tremendously in reassuring him and building his confidence level! I set the pad on his back - he didn't even flinch or bat an eye. Then I introduced him to the saddle. After allowing him to inspect it as well, I set in on his back. He stood quietly and solidly, even with the weight of the saddle.

I gently and quietly tightened the girth until it was just beyond loose. He was a perfect boy and tolerated everything that I did :)

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Once I untied him and moved him away from the trailer, the pressure of the saddle freaked him out and he started bucking. He was very easy to calm down and reassure. It took about 15 minutes of slow, small steps and lots of reassurance before he felt comfortable. I walked him to the round pen and let him loose. He stood there, unsure of what to do, but not too worried.

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I asked him to move out and trot a bit. He walked, but as soon as he started trotting, I think the stirrups tapping his sides freaked him out and he bucked a few times. It only lasted a couple strides before he was moving out.

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After about 20 minutes of exercise, I asked him to stop. He was perfect as I approached, attached the lead rope, praised him and led him back to the barn. He was calm, quiet, and even showed no worries as he reached down for a bite of grass and the back cinch touched his stomach. He was such a good boy today!

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I think I will continue to saddle him up as much as possible in order to get him used to the saddle and the idea of having things on his back. Hopefully soon, I can get him started under saddle :)
Feel the Spirit, Keep on Riding!
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Re: Rory's 1st saddling!

Postby RockinCircleC on Tue May 30, 2006 3:13 pm

Juliane wrote:I tied him up to the horse trailer and brushed him down.
...
After I was done brushing him, I pulled out my saddle and pad. I set the pad on him after letting him sniff it. He is really curious and interested in things, even if he's frightened. This has helped tremendously in reassuring him and building his confidence level! I set the pad on his back - he didn't even flinch or bat an eye. Then I introduced him to the saddle. After allowing him to inspect it as well, I set in on his back. He stood quietly and solidly, even with the weight of the saddle.
...
Once I untied him and moved him away from the trailer, the pressure of the saddle freaked him out and he started bucking.


Juliane,

I just have one safety concern with your procedure for saddling horses for the first time (or even the first year or so). Please consider NOT tieing the horse to anything and saddle with the horse on the lead rope with the rope in your hand or the crook of your arm. I would hate to see a horse get scared and pull back while tied to the trailer and then have issues with saddling or tieing the rest of its life. I have watched a few horses that are even seasoned older horses get scared because they forgot they were tied when they realized the saddle was tight around them; one recently and the leadrope had to be cut because the horse fell down and couldn't get up (luckily no one was hurt at all, not even a scrape).

At a minimum, just have the halter lead untied and threaded through your tie ring and not secure so that the horse never comes to possibly getting in a bad deal and also to save your truck/trailer/equipment.

Just thought you might find this helpful.

Liz
Liz Clark
http://latigoliz.blogspot.com/
No horse will ever teach you as much as your first horse.
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Postby Juliane on Tue May 30, 2006 3:20 pm

That's a good point and one I should have considered! Thanks Liz :) I prefer for them to learn to be tied, so holding the lead rope in my hand or crook of my arm may not work the best for me. However, it would be easy to loop it through the tie ring and hold the other end while saddling. That way, the horse can pull back without incident and I can still have control of the horse :)

Thanks so much for this tip! It's helpful to have other's thoughts on what I do, as I don't always see things that could turn into potentially dangerous situations!
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Postby RockinCircleC on Tue May 30, 2006 3:29 pm

Juliane wrote:I prefer for them to learn to be tied, so holding the lead rope in my hand or crook of my arm may not work the best for me.
...
Thanks so much for this tip! It's helpful to have other's thoughts on what I do, as I don't always see things that could turn into potentially dangerous situations!


I completely understand, and I think in a year or two (sometimes more) a horse should be able to stand tied like that, but some horses take longer. If you do tie hard and fast, make sure you have a good sharp knife in your pocket just in case. Scrambling to find a knife when a horse is down is not good.

You are very welcome. And if ever anything I suggest sounds confusing at all, just let me know. I need to get out and ride more when the weather starts cooperating and I can find a sitter so we should get together and ride in Maple Valley or Fall City sometime.

Liz
Liz Clark
http://latigoliz.blogspot.com/
No horse will ever teach you as much as your first horse.
RockinCircleC
 
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Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2006 3:00 pm
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Postby Juliane on Tue May 30, 2006 3:35 pm

Yes, a ride sounds great! I am going to have plenty of 'green' horses that will need miles and I severely need a riding partner :) Just let me know when you're thinking and I'll be sure I have childcare too! :)
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