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Horse wont stand to be mounted.

17 replies

TataClaire · 03/06/2013 08:35

Any tips on how to correct this? Im having to sell my boy but its the only annoying thing he does! As soon as I pop my little box next to him and stand on it, he just walks off like he wants to get on with it! I don't want it to put people off when they try him as he's 15.3 so most people will need to use a step.
Sometimes it takes quarter of an hour for me to get on as Im usually alone. He's never nasty with it but it is fairly irritating as he's a super hacking horse other than that Sad

OP posts:
Butkin · 03/06/2013 11:02

Yes this is annoying and is a regular bad trait. One, potentially simple, solution is to get him to face the stable wall so he can't move forward when you mount. Practise a regular voice command - such as "stand" - and keep reinforcing it when you want him to do this.

Another way is to practise with somebody holding his head and reprimand him if he walks off and praise him when he stands still.

inneedofrain · 03/06/2013 11:36

Ok there are a few options.

As butkin suggests stand him facing a wall, where you have preped him first, un loop the reigns and, verbal command, mount him with loads a praise.

Second is to set a mounting point, ie put you box down in the same place, tack and then walk him over to set spot, verbal command, mount and loads of praise.

Each time he walks off you must bring him back the desired location, verbal command again, mount etc and keep doing it! Do not follow him with your block, just go back and get him quitely, put him back in position give your command and try again

Also you want to start the verbal command when it has nothing to do with mounting. So when you are gromming him, rugging him, bathing him etc always use a "stand" command

What is he like if you ever have to get off during a ride, will he stand to let you floor mount? etc.

Does he do the same thing with floor mounting?

Will he stand for rugging etc?

It is a really common issue by the way, and can be a ptb, although it never bothered me and would not be an issue for me if I was buying a horse but then I like my horses to have some spunk about them and I was normally on 16+ etc so I was quite adept at mounting but I did always train my horses to stand for mounting etc (after one nasty ish insident where I ended up flat on the yard floor)

Sorry I am having a very bad word day, curtesy of my brain damage

pandaptogether · 03/06/2013 13:08

I was going to post about this same issue. My NF constantly moves away from the block. Will try and do the wall thing to see if it helps.

TataClaire · 03/06/2013 17:41

Thanks for the input guys, he stands fine to be rugged and strangely when I tried jumping up and down next to him as though I was going to jump up on him he just stood there, soon as I get the box or stand him next to some other inanimate object he either stands front on to me which is no use or walks off... havent had to remount while out yet which is handy as not sure Id manage!!!

OP posts:
Wishiwasanheiress · 03/06/2013 17:45

Hmm, I'd also question your saddle? Have you had it checked recently for fit? Or horses spine? The hopping and you pulling to get up can be painful for some. He might be sensitive? A step might help?

Elansofar · 03/06/2013 17:47

Hi make sure your horse fully understands the command to stand first. Work with it on ground with treats for standing still for longer and longer periods, I tend to get to the stage I can ask horse to stand in an open field and walk a good 10m box right around the horse both ways before returning and treating. Once it is standing on command, then start work on getting on, use a mounting block so no strain on you or horse. If it tries to walk off immediately get off and return it to the mounting block. Once the horse realises you are prepared to work at the standing and getting on all day it will give up this trick. Persistence and rewarding the behaviour you are seeking works but is not an overnight thing unless you have a bright youngster perhaps. If you haven't time and need to make a sale, then be honest about the horses traits, you are more likely to find a suitable long term home?

SaggyOldClothCatPuss · 03/06/2013 18:08

Lets try a different point of view. Get someone objective that knows what they are doing to look at your method of mounting.
Your horse is walking off for a reason. It could be...
How long it takes. Do you put the block down, step up, foot in stirrup,on, lets go? Or do you put the step down, faff with the position, climb up, put your foot in the stirrup, grab the saddle, hop a couple of times, change position, hop again then finally mount?
When you mount, so you grab a handful of mane or do you hang onto the front/back of the saddle and yank it out of position when you use it to pull yourself up?
Do you drag yourself aboard or skip up lightly like a gymnast?
Do you lump down into the saddle?
Do you kick him in the ribs or elbow on the way up?
Any or all of these reasons could make your horse act up on mounting. Or it could be a baldy fitting saddle or a bad back making him reluctant to let you on. Or it could be none of the above.
Generally when they act out, you can step back and think 'what am I doing incorrectly' and work the answer out. It's not often the horses fault.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss · 03/06/2013 18:10

Try getting someone to video a typical mounting session and watch it back.

Wishiwasanheiress · 03/06/2013 18:12

Agree with saggy. Video yourself. You will be surprised I'm sure. Do it a few times. And no special mount ups for the camera!

SaggyOldClothCatPuss · 03/06/2013 18:15

If his two offside feet leave the floor or he says "Oof" when you get on, it's probably you! Grin

BobbinUp · 03/06/2013 19:36

I changed my saddle a while back and it was amazing that out of sime 15 saddles we tried the one that fitted was the only one that she didn't move when I got on. The saddle lady said that if it doesn't quite sit right they need to move to settle it on and make it comfortable. Might be worth looking at.

TataClaire · 04/06/2013 08:12

Oo lots of good ideas - thanks everyone! I did have his saddle properly fitted but then he started to walk off when I went near him with it to tack up, turned out he'd changed shape and it was a little tight, so had it readjusted and now he doesnt bat an eyelid now about that. I'd say I probably take too long mounting for him, as I want to make sure he'll stand still. I only weigh about seven stone and make sure I go into the saddle gently.
I gave with the box last night and just lowered a stirrup a couple of holes and managed to mount from the ground, he still moved off but its not like he shoots forward, more just creeps off towards the open door of the school - if I close it I can't open it when mounted as it's too heavy. I managed to get him to stand still after I'd sat up and got him to bend each way with some polos and then just stand and wait as he's fairly impatient, and he just went to sleep.
Its almost like he just cant be bothered to wait for me to go on the hack!! He behaved superbly as usual on the hack though Grin

OP posts:
inneedofrain · 04/06/2013 09:32

Ok, couple of ideas for you!

Lets do a very simple sandle test, can you mount him bare back? Does he do the same thing? You don´t need to ride him bar back, but will he stand to be mount, next to your block?

Is your mounting block high enough? If not you might be putting too much presure on the sandle as you mount.

Do you have to tighen the girth after mounting? If so there is a chance that the sandle is slipping as you mount. So check the girth prior to mounting and make sure the sandle is in a good position.

Have you got a friend / stable mate, that you could ask to mount your horse, see if your horse does the same thing, if not then there is a chance it is something you are doing.

Do you mount properly?

A lot of the time when a horse moves during mounting its to get their balance back.

SO if the problem is not with the sandle, lets just for a moment consider its something you might be doing wrong or that he has not been taught / miss understood.

Take horse to mounting block and stand with your horse untill he is calm and still.

Look at his stance are his front feet planted and is he secure in his balance? If his feet are not planted then his balance is not good then you can help him get his balance, by try to nudge him off of balance, gently of course. Were are tying to make this part of the mounting routine, each time he plants his legs quicker

Now stand next to him and put your foot in and out of the stirup untill he is not bothered by it at all.

Ok, so do not grab the sadle to mount.
Take the reins an place them along with your hand at the base of the mane (not the hair) you are holding firm but not pinching squeezing or pulling. This hand is to stabilise you its not a resting post, pivot point or anything else. The reins should help hold your horse still so make sure they are an appropriate lenght.

Put your Foot in the stirup check the position of your toes, they should not be pointing in towards the horse, but straight past his head (other wise you are going to toe him as you get over, and he is going to walk on) and swing your leg over without touching the horse, and over the other side, Settle gently into the saddle and find your other stirrup without looking, if possible. then remove your foot from stirup and adjust to the correct length if necessary

Now, STAND count to 15, 20, 25 whatever in your head until you horse is calm and then walk on (this will stop the come on mum lets go). Make sure you do not walk on untill your horse is calm THis it the great hurry up and wait, other wise he is always going to want to get on with the fun

If at any point he starts to drift or move about befor you mounted, Lift the reins, Don´t pull back, twist lift them up in the air wait for him to stop, take you foot out and start again. "to stop the drift, lift" We are trying to teach him that the more he "plays" or gets excited the longer it is going to take you to mount him properly. So the more "ready and well behaved" the quicker he will get what he wants (hacking)

Now there are a couple of things, as we get older we often don´t change our mounting, this is a mistake as sometimes we can´t lift our leg as high etc. So check that your mounting block is high enough.

I was also always taught to do regular mounting excercises to improve fitness,(horse and ours) on both sides this little drill together: down and up, down and up, down and up, stand halfway up, and when he stands still, reach over and rub him on the far shoulder to ask ?permission? to get on, and then get on!

One last thing that gets horses good about being dismounted is this: every time you dismount, do the same three-times drill (up-down, up-down, up-down). He?ll learn to stand still while you smoothly dismount.

Remember lots of praise, and smile it makes a difference

horseylady · 04/06/2013 15:04

Daft as it sounds, make him stand square. Generally horses will not walk off if stood square as the weight is evenly distributed. I make sure mine are stood square and never have an issue. If they're not, they walk off!!

TataClaire · 04/06/2013 17:13

Thanks again, shall have a practise tonight!
He's really difficult to get square because he doesnt really move to the normal ground aids - i.e. finger in chest or side nudging him he just stands there like a wall. I have to be pretty firm when I ask him to move back etc so am thinking that even though he's thirteen there are a few gaps in his education! Will try the bareback thing in the indoor school and see how he is, will be an interesting test.
I now try to dismount on the right side for a change as its good for both of us and he's fine with that. Fingers crossed for tonight! Smile

OP posts:
Pixel · 04/06/2013 17:56

If he's creeping off towards the door of the school, what happens if you have him facing away from it? Does he still move then? Just a thought as it might help to work out if it's a physical/balance/tack thing or simply the temptation of the open door and him being impatient.

TataClaire · 07/06/2013 12:54

I practised him standing etc and getting on and off the box and then got my friend to watch and then when he started doing it, she just said be firm with him as he does know how to do it, so I tried being firm and confident with him and he stood there and then didnt even walk off when I had hopefully I can build on this!!!

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