Loading horses has got to be the biggest trauma for horse-owners.
You have somewhere to be with your horse, and he just won’t go on.
Time ticks by, he digs in his feet, you’re getting more and more frustrated, and it just ‘aint working.
So what do you do? I once saw Tom Dorrence address this very question on a DVD a few years back, and his answer was to just close the door of the float, put your horse back in his paddock and head off to the show without him, because you’re not going to get much done with him that day anyway.
So what do you do to make sure you and your horse’s experience of going on the float doesn’t end up like this? For me horses and floating are made up of several different aspects.
You have going on the float, standing and travelling in the float, and coming off the float.
If any one of these is even slightly stressful, you could be in for a bit of trouble.
For me, floating begins long before I take a horse anywhere near a float.
I want to make sure the basics are in place.
This means I put a lot of time into gaining my horses trust, and getting a rapport going with my horse.
I like to get horses to where they really look to me to get out of trouble.
When horses are good at that, I find they’ll do almost anything me.
Including going into a float.
We need for to think a little like a horse when it comes to floating.
We take our horse, who lives in the wide open spaces, we point him in the direction of a very small cave where all his attackers live, we force him up in there, tell him he can’t move, which means he can’t defend himself, and then to add a little insult to injury, we say hang on while I make this tiny little cave move 20 times faster than you’ll ever go.
Is it any wonder horses have trouble floating. www.sandalesaddlery.com.au Suggestions for an article? Let me know what you want featured and it will be done! email@example.com H O R SE H O U SE T ID BIT S L OA DI NG HORSES ON A FL OA T (continued) By Gavin Bartlett of White Pegasus Enterprises There’s another way to go about this, and that’s with feel, timing and balance.
It’s important to prepare a horse for floating real slow.
A lot slower than you might imaging.
And plenty of preparation.
The more the better.
A horse needs extra support and direction from a person.
I like to have my horses leading up real free and soft, coming forward off of pressure real soft and with a real nice feel.
I get them to backing up the same way.
The softer the better.
After a horse can get to leading and backing one step at a time, you can introduce some other objects to get him used to different situations.
You can stand by a fence or a rail and get him used to moving calm and quiet, soft and supple between you and the fence.
Look for any tension that might be in there.
As he gets more and more comfortable, close the gap little by little.
You can put him over some objects and obstacles, like a bridge or a teeter bridge.
Get him used to working over a tarp or a sheet of plastic.
Another important point to remember is to make sure your horse can be tied up, at least for about 5 minutes without fidgeting or pulling back on the lead.
Especially if you need to tie him in the float.
He needs to be able to come forward off of pressure, especially if he’s tied in the float.
With being in such a closed and confined space a horse can get to panicking pretty easy.
Once a has been prepared a little, (or a lot, the more the better) then I’ll introduce him to the float.
I don’t want to get to putting the whole horse in the float at the start.
I’ll bring him up pretty much one step at a time.
Even if all I get is one foot on the ramp to begin.
I’ll let him sit for a while, then I’ll back him off, and maybe take him for a little walk, and start again.
He needs to learn how to get out as he learns how to get in.
Remember, the best way to eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
Inch by inch it’s a cinch.
By the yard it’s hard, and by the mile it’s a pile.
The horse needs to get comfortable at the start. In the next part Gavin will cover in more detail a bit more about approaching and loading into the float www.sandalesaddlery.com.au Want to start a layby layby? Talk to us today! firstname.lastname@example.org H O R SE H O U SE T ID BIT S K irstie An sell s R epo rt on her recent Victorian Run Kirstie s had yet another massive run and this time she had Billy Raymont riding her big grey, Cameol .
At Shepparton World Cup Show, which was her first show on her new horse Balou (he d only done 2 Jump Clubs prior!) she placed 5th in the Young Rider Championship! Over to Wodonga World Cup Show, and Cameol had his first World Cup start with Billy Raymont where he jumped a clear and a 12 fault, landing them 8th place overall.
In Kirstie s words this was just a little exciting! .
Firing up the truck again, she headed over to Sale World Cup Show with Balou where she placed 5th in the Young Rider and then 4th in the Young Rider also.
Aaaaand off again, put-putting across the state to Tonimbuk World Cup Show and this was a biggie for Kirstie and her team.
Copabella Volcanic placed 2nd in the 1.25m great job! Cecil placed 4th in the 1.15m and then won the D Grade Championship also.
Way to go, Cecil ! Out popped Balou again where he placed 5th in the Future Stars comp.
Kirstie also took Balou in their very first Mini Prix start together and rode well, only receiving one time penalty.
Along with her string, Billy Raymont took Cameol out where they achieved 6th place in the C Grade Championship.
Good job, Billy and Cameol ! And finally, capping off the run, Team Ansell hit the Sydney Summer Classic where Balou came through with a 7th place in the Young Rider Qualifier 1 and then 6th in the Young Rider Qualifier 2.
Copabella Volcanic followed form, placing 5th in the 1.20m and then 3rd in the 1.20m 3rd.
Billy Raymont topped it all off with his ride on Cameol earning them the Winner of the Mini Prix Final.
They were the only clean round of the event! Great job, Kirstie, Billy and all your team.
We are all so proud of your efforts in 2012 and are so keen to see what 2013 brings for you! On a sad note, the only disappointment to their summer was when their beloved dog Mintie visited Sandale whilst on an enforced diet and stole an unknown quantity of dog treats.
Sadly, Mintie is now commonly known as the black sheep in the Ansell clan. www.sandalesaddlery.com.au While we write often about our sponsored riders, we d love to hear from all corners of our community.
Don t think you have to be sponsored to get a mention! email@example.com H O R SE H O U SE T ID BIT S E n d u ra n c eR id in g ,T H EQ U IL T Y a n dalo n gtim em a teo fo u rs ,M a rkJ o h n s o n
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