Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Remedies for a Horse that Pulls Back

I received this reader question from Amanda via e-mail....."Hi - Would appreciate suggestions for 12 yr old gelding that will not tie. It is not a fear issue and he does not paw or dig. He might stay tied 10 minutes, or an hour, but when he decides he wants to leave, he just leans back and breaks the tie and walks away. He will walk right up to me and allow himself to be caught. Previous owner tried using a Blocker Tie Ring and worked on the problem for 2 months, then sold him to me. Other than this he is a *great* horse and does not have any other issues. Thanks."

Amanda, your 12 year old Gelding knows he can pull back and break the halter or tie at will. He has to learn that he can't break it to stop this problem. I don't know if you are using a rope halter, but a good rope halter and lead line is harder to break than a conventional lead line with a snap. Additionally, the rope halter, due to it's smaller diameter strap over his poll adds more pressure there on the poll when the horse pulls back. If he pulls back, he'll get pressure in his poll - when he stops pulling back he'll learn to get a release.

In the old days we'd take a horse and tie them up tight to a snubbing post with his head higher than normal so he can't round the back, set his read end and get more leverage,..... and keep him there for hours. I don't condone this as there are better ways for a horse to learn to stand tied, and fairer ways at that.

In the video,....I know I ramble on,.... but I show the ring devices with the same principle as a Blocker tie ring so a horse can't pull back and break anything. However, you can't tie a horse and walk away with this rigging as he will pull the lead rope out of the ring,....or he will pull enough lead line through then get his front legs tangled up in the lead rope slack.

So we are back to a rope halter which I think you should try. I use nothing but Double Diamond as they are quality halters. I make my own lead lines and generally use 12 to 15 foot lengths as I use them for short lunge sessions or to sack the horse out of ropes around his feet....just a more usable length for me.

Hope this helps and safe journey.

1 comment:

  1. I would strongly urge you to try the Idolo tether tie - it cured my horse of pulling back very quickly.