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Pushy Horses

pushy horses

Differentiating between those who are a little in your space or want to engage a little too much and Pushy Horses, the horse that we are talking about here, a pushy horse, is one that is not aware of your personal space.  Maybe they are so distracted that they run over you or maybe they completely ignore you.  Working with pushy horses can indeed pose several risks and challenges. 

  1. Safety Concerns: Pushy horses may invade your personal space, push, shove, or even bite. Such behavior can result in accidents and injuries to both the horse and the handler.

  2. Lack of Respect: When a horse is pushy, it often indicates a lack of respect for the handler. This can create a power struggle and make it difficult to establish a trusting and cooperative relationship.

  3. Ineffective Communication: Pushy horses often don’t respond well to traditional training methods because they may not understand or accept the handler’s authority. This can lead to frustration and an escalation of undesirable behavior.

  4. Reinforcement of Undesired Behavior: Allowing pushy behavior to continue can reinforce these actions. Horses, like children, learn through consistent consequences. If they find that being pushy gets them what they want, they will continue to act this way.

  5. Safety Risks for Others: Pushy horses can be a danger to others in their vicinity, such as other horses, handlers, or even bystanders. This poses a risk to the overall safety of the environment.

A simple fix for this is to place a barrier between the pushy horse and yourself. This allows you to work on things just as you would in a normal round-yard or pen, but in a safe and effective manner.

A reminder of how to use this course: click on Mark Complete below and you will be taken to the next topic.

2 Comments
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This video was very helpful. Thank you for the clear explanation on the pieces with the primary point (from my perspective) of managing my own energy regardless of what the horse does. The steps (after managing my energy) from asking the horse to move hind end first, then ribcage, the front feet, were great. Other great tips I took from this were 1) do this where the horse lives, you may need to do this daily or 3 x a week, or whatever length of time it takes before moving to another exercise.

I have a question and I’m not sure how to ask it. I think I heard “don’t undo what you just worked through..” and I wanted to better understand this. It was said in the context (I think) of leading your horse back to its pasture. I think you are saying.. if you horse is pushy when you lead it then start by working with the horse where it lives. Is this what you mean? Or, if your horse doesn’t run you over when you lead him, then it’s ok to bring to an arena and work with him there?

Last question – acknowledging that this exercise may take 3 x a week for a month or however long it takes – what is the next step? Thank you.

Warwick Schiller avatar Warwick Schiller (Administrator) March 5, 2024 at 7:59 pm

” if you horse is pushy when you lead it then start by working with the horse where it lives. Is this what you mean?”
Yes, dont undo all the hard work you just did

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