Horse Kicks When Picking Up Back Feet? (TOP 5 Tips)

A reluctance to pick up the feet when asked, either for routing hoof picking or for the farrier, is a very common problem and potentially a dangerous one. A horse that kicks or snatchs, or suddenly slams its hoof on the ground when you handle its feet can easily cause injuries.

What does it mean when a horse kicks its back legs?

In the wild, horses use powerful kicks, often with both back legs at the same time, to ward off predators. This defensive instinct is why some horses kick when they become alarmed—such as when a person, dog or another animal ‘pops into view’ behind the horse.

How do you pick up a difficult horse’s foot?

RIGHT: Pinch or twist your horse’s chestnut just enough to make him notice and lift his foot in response. Once he does pick up his foot, immediately release the pressure and begin rubbing his leg again, so he relaxes and puts his foot on the ground.

What is it called when a horse kicks back?

Bucking is a movement performed by an animal in which it lowers its head and raises its hindquarters into the air while kicking out with the hind legs. It is most commonly seen in herbivores such as equines, cattle, deer, goats, and sheep. Most research on this behavior has been directed towards horses and cattle.

What does it mean when a horse cow kicks?

Message: “ I hurt.” Similarly, a horse with a sore back might lash out or “cow kick” sideways when the saddle is placed on his back or the girth is tightened. Horses may also kick out of annoyance.

How do you get a horse to pick up its foot when jumping?

Place a ground rail several inches in front of the jump. Approach the exercise in a nice, forward, rising trot, keeping your horse straight and in balance. This will set him up for a good takeoff over the jump. As he goes over the bounce rail, close your legs on his sides as if you were asking for a canter depart.

How often should I pick my horses hooves?

Take aim by: Picking feet out daily, if possible. This is especially important if your horse lives in a stall full time or has only daily turn-out. If daily picking isn’t practical (he lives in a pasture, say), at a minimum try to do a good visual inspection daily, and use a hoof pick two or three times a week.

How do you tell if a horse is going to kick?

If you notice your horse is swishing his tail back and forth, combined with other warning behavior like pinned ears, you may be witnessing signs your horse is working himself up to kicking. Another sign your horse is planning on kicking is if he has lifted or cocked one hind leg.

Does hoof picking hurt?

It’s unlikely you’ll hurt a horse’s hoof when using a simple hoof pick to clean it. However, if you don’t learn how to properly ask for and hold the hoof, you could harm the leg or the horse could harm you. The old saying, “No hoof, no horse” holds true, so hoof cleaning should be part of your daily routine.

What to do if a horse tries to kick you?

If your horse kicks you or bites you, you should punish him as soon as possible. Hesitating and only trying to do something in a minute is useless. Your reaction should be instant. Usually, its good to just use whatever you have in hand at the moment.

How to Correct a Kicking Horse Habit

It’s not every day that we get to witness Clinton Anderson from Downunder Horsemanship working with horses, but it’s an interesting relationship. While he recognizes that they are magnificent animals, full of elegance, power, and agility, he also recognizes that they can be dangerous in their own right. Horses are not aware of their own size and strength, and if you do not have your horse’s respect, this may lead to a dangerous situation, such as a kicking horse habit, among other things. Clinton works with customers to help them acquire the respect of their horses, allowing them to create a safe and healthy bond with them.

During this week’s episode, Clinton collaborates with Cindy Love Eichler and her horse Blue in order to handle Blue’s incessant kicking problem.

She’s finding it more difficult to deal with the situation, and she’s already been booted out of the house twice.

In the beginning, he focuses solely on Blue’s groundwork activities, entirely neglecting the gelding’s leg-handling difficulties.

  • This serves as a beginning point, as well as a communication point, between Clinton and Blue, allowing them to securely advance towards Blue’s feet and work on his concerns from that point forward.
  • Clinton begins the training session by demonstrating to Cindy how she may work with Blue’s concerns in a safe manner.
  • He instructs her to shorten the lead rope, swat the ground in a circular manner, and then repeat the process many times.
  • The horse will get spookier and more reactive as a result of Cindy’s attempts to sneak around him.
  • The Fundamentals level exercise “Yield the Hindquarters Stage One” is used once Blue has been desensitized in order for Clinton to develop control of his hindquarters and control of his body.
  • First and foremost, he will gain Blue’s trust and respect.
  • Simply asking Blue to give his hindquarters and immediately massaging him as a reward for his excellent behavior accomplishes this.

“Lunging for Respect Stage Two,” as Clinton refers to it, follows after that.

In order for Blue to execute a crisp rollback, which comes easily to Blue because he’s a cutting horse, he needs Blue to do a sharp rollover.

Blue’s feet have been moved, and Clinton has gained his respect and confidence, and now he is working on desensitizing Blue to having his rear legs rubbed and handled in the future.

When Blue remains still as Clinton rubs his rear legs, Clinton advances to cueing Blue to raise his legs up and stand up straight.

After hurrying Blue’s feet, Clinton immediately returned to stroking and lifting up the gelding’s rear legs once more.

This is the stage during which learning takes place.

To ensure that this new habit sticks and continues improving, Cindy will need to work with Blue on a daily basis.

When it comes to teaching a horse, consistency is your greatest ally, and inconsistency is your worst adversary.

When you gain the respect of your horse and eradicate any fear, your troubles will vanish into thin air.

You may discover more about the Clinton Anderson training approach, as well as any of the goods featured on today’s episode, by going to Clinton Anderson’s website and browsing through his extensive collection of training kits.


By joining the No Worries Club now, you can learn how to master your horsemanship training through Clinton’s step-by-step technique videos. By joining the club, you will be able to take advantage of exclusive prices on all of Clinton’s must-have training tools and materials. In addition, you’ll be able to take advantage of all of the incredible perks that come with club membership! Read on to find out more

Horse kicks – picking up feet help

I’ve recently acquired a 2.5-year-old cob that has had very little work done on the feet of his legs. He has never had his rear feet examined by a farrier; only his front feet have been examined, according to his former owner, who stated that he dislikes having his back legs lifted up. After a while, I started brushing his rear legs, which he tolerated. However, if I move the brush down his leg as if I was going to request his hoof, he pulls his leg up and strikes out. Having just had him for three days, I haven’t really asked for his hoof yet; instead, I’ve been grooming him.

  1. In a video, Monty Roberts demonstrates using a rubber hand to avoid being kicked, and basically you don’t take the hand away from horse until horse stands up and accepts it, then you remove the hand.
  2. Run down the horse’s legs to get him acclimated to it – it doesn’t take long, if at all.
  3. It is necessary to operate silently in their vicinity.
  4. Take a long, thick, soft rope and slowly wrap it around the leg, allowing it to glide down the pastern, and then give the rope a couple of twists to tighten it.
  5. Although he may first kick out, because the rope will not be removed, he will ultimately stop kicking out.
  6. Hold each action you take until he stops making a fuss, and then let the foot go to the floor.
  7. As Evelyn, but I would probably graduate to a back leg hobble, so that they learn to lift up their hind legs and balance; the goal is for them to not rest on my farrier’s shoulders.

I have seen a lot of people who grab around the We’ve had some very awful ones over the years, but this one stands the test of time.

Don’t forget to train him to pull his legs forward so the farrier can complete his feet.

I began by using a rolled-up feedback to attempt to desensitize him to contact while keeping a safe distance between us, but the feedbag proved to be too flexible.

I bought a cheap girth fleece and some vet wrap after slicing a little piece off the hooked end.

I next asked him to lift his feet with the help of the false arm.

It is critical that the horse learns that you will not leave him when he kicks, or else you will be effectively training him to kick!

Doing so in a safe manner!

Over time, I worked my way down to asking for his foot with my hand, and eventually worked my way down to asking for his foot with my hand.

lol As most other people have stated, a fake arm looks like an excellent idea.

Excellent counsel is being offered, and it is undoubtedly done with a phony hand.

Make your intentions plain to the horse so that he understands what you desire.

Farriers are not wonder workers, and they must be protected at all costs since it is their livelihood – apologize for the rant, I know you didn’t expect a farrier to fix him.

Good luck; if you are patient and consistent, he will eventually come around.

I start with a stick and work my way up to an old walking stick that has padding of some sort taped securely to the curved section so it is softer to touch. Make use of it, then hook the foot up such that you are a safe distance away. It has always been a positive experience for me.

RESPECT – Learning to Pick Up Feet

Developing the ability to respectfully bring up a foot when requested is an important element of a young horse’s training and should be done on a consistent basis from birth. However, there are certain children who do not receive this early instruction. Some kids are born and raised outside in tiny herds, which is wonderful, except that when they are weaned and sold on to future owners, they are utterly unaware of the responsibilities that they would be expected to carry out on their own. Lunging, backing, and riding away are frequently the first things that are taught to a horse when it is initially started.

  • In one instance, a three-year-old Warmblood imported from Holland was brought to my yard, where it was said that the horse had been backed and rode away.
  • This was not crucial to his owners, who believed that he would elevate his feet when he was ready and able to do so comfortably.
  • The health consequences of this were evident; infection and/or injury to the hoof/pastern axis were just a breath away due to the changed hoof/pastern axis.
  • I feel that the handler should hang on to the horse’s foot if at all feasible, moving with him as he moves, and wait for him to restore his equilibrium and stand on three legs before continuing the ride.
  • Unfortunately, in the situation stated, the owners refused to follow my advise, claiming that they did not want to stress the horse.
  • As a result, some years later, he continues to be exceedingly difficult to shoe, rears with the farrier on a regular basis, and has been refused shoeing by more than one farrier.
  • The child should be comfortable with the handler moving his or her hands softly but firmly down each leg, without necessarily asking for the foot to be elevated, to begin with.
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Lifting the Feet in the Forefoot It is preferable to begin lifting the feet with the front foot while starting the lift.

You should run your hand down his neck and shoulder, then down his leg to the fetlock.

Be cautious not to apply too much force; a modest weight shift is sufficient; you do not want to throw him off his equilibrium by doing so.

Then, using your right hand, grab the toe of the foot and hold it there.

Continue to keep this posture for a few seconds (holding the foot in both hands).

Do not suddenly let go, since this may cause the horse to become unbalanced and frightened.

Grasp the horse’s quarters with your left hand, which will be on the left side in this example (we will assume you are on the left side again).

Then, starting at the front of the hock, run your palm along the inside of the cannon bone all the way down to the fetlock, if necessary.

As with the front legs, it is important not to overdo this weight transference and to avoid doing it all at one time.

Slide your left hand down to wrap the foot, then grip it at the toe with your right hand to complete the motion.

Both of these activities have the potential to cause the horse to become angry and unbalanced.

It goes without saying that the hind feet can be more perilous, since some horses, when scared, would kick out of their shoes.

As soon as he is completely comfortable with picking up the front feet, he should be able to be much more calm with picking up the hind feet.

This is a position that would suit someone who is quite youthful and nimble.

While it is true that horses kick when they are initially started, this is not necessarily due to their being mean or wicked; it might just be due to them being terrified.

Perseverance and quiet resolve, on the other hand, will typically win the day.

As a result, he will become more adept at balancing on three legs, and the length of time that the leg can be held up will increase, as will his ability to maintain balance.

However, you must be cautious not to praise him for inappropriate behavior.

Providing some horses that have formed the habit of kicking with a bucket of feed from a helper can entirely divert their attention away from what is going on.

Some horses become so agitated by the process of having their feet cared to by the farrier that they require the assistance of a veterinary surgeon in order for it to be done in a manner that is safe for both the farrier and the horse.

In my experience, most farriers are very patient, yet calm, persistent, and determined, so it is not usually the farrier who is to blame when something goes wrong.

With proper teaching and care between sedations, it is feasible that the horse will grow quiet enough to have his feet attended to without sedation after one or possibly two sedations.

Respect is a two-way street in horse training, as it is in other aspects of life.

But this should not be taken to imply that the horse should be allowed to behave in a completely unruly manner or refuse to cooperate in any way.

The trainer must maintain his or her composure while maintaining firm but patient determination.

It is the trainer’s responsibility to instill in the horse a sense of total trust, safe in the knowledge that whatever he is asked to do is in his own best interests, even if it appears to be difficult or weird to him at the time.

Call 01234 772401 or send an email to [email protected] to find out more about Anne Wilson, a freelance classical riding trainer based in Bedfordshire who trained with Sylvia Loch and holds the Classical Riding Club Gold Award Certificate –

Train Your Horse to Pick Up a Foot

When a horse refuses to allow his foot to be taken up, it is not a case of a bizarre behavioral condition that you should learn to deal with over time. For the horse’s own safety and overall well-being, as well as for the sake of your farrier’s sanity, he must overcome his fear of feet as quickly as possible. When dealing with behavioral difficulties like as these, keep in mind that your horse’s conduct is the result of a previous experience. Before beginning any training program, be sure that your horse does not have any health issues that might be causing him to resist.

  1. To be successful, you must maintain your composure and confidence.
  2. Getting enraged at him will only serve to worsen the situation.
  3. Here’s how to do it.
  4. To keep your horse from acting in this manner, you’ll need to first outfit him with a halter and lead.
  5. After that, enlist the assistance of a skilled buddy to hold your horse in a very wide aisle.

(You and your pal should both be wearing strong shoes or paddock boots, especially during this form of training, to avoid being injured by an unintentional hoof misstep.) Now, instruct your horse to pick up a foot that is simple for him to take up: In other cases, a horse may easily pick up one foot–for example, the front leg–but will not allow the hind leg to be picked up.

  1. Every time your horse performs admirably, give him a treat.
  2. If you do this, you’ll notice that your horse will most likely reply by elevating his foot as a response.
  3. By leaning on the horse’s shoulder, you may also try to move the horse’s weight away from the leg you’re trying to bring up and toward the other leg.
  4. When you try to lift his foot, gently squeeze the lower tendon that goes along the rear side of his leg as you do so can also aid.
  5. After that, softly place the foot down and repeat.
  6. As much as your horse may want to stamp his foot back down, you’ll have to maintain your composure and hold on to that leg no matter how hard he tries to drag it away.
  7. Simply keep the foot in place for a brief period of time so the horse learns he cannot jerk it away.

If your horse kicks at you or becomes irritated, you must first calm him down and get him back into a comfortable frame of mind before continuing.

It’s best to get the help of a more experienced friend or horse trainer to work on this problem with you until your horse’s strength and agility improve.

The training sessions will need to be repeated several times until your horse realizes that picking up his feet is a normal part of his daily routine.

Once your horse appears to be completely at ease with the entire process, you may begin softly tapping on the bottom of his foot, first with your knuckles and then with a little hammer, to prepare him for the farrier.

For training purposes, the farrier may be prepared to provide you with an old, dull rasp that you may use for practice.

A foal’s leg can be picked up as early as a day or two after birth according to Mona Gardella, who owns and operates a breeding and training farm near Hoffman, North Carolina.

Remember that a newborn foal has a shaky sense of balance, so don’t expect him to hold his foot up for more than a few seconds at a time or for an extended period of time.

It will become second nature to you to train your horse to pick up a hoof if you are patient and dedicate the necessary time to the task. Continuing Your Education How to Deal with Hoof Issues Thrush in Horse Hooves is a kind of bird.

Why Won’t My Horse Let Me Pick Up Its Feet?

Any horse owner who has ever had to deal with a horse that won’t allow you to stand on its hind legs understands how aggravating the situation can be. There’s nothing quite like being told how little and weak you truly are by a 1000-pound beast to bring home the point. What is it about horses that makes them hesitate to take up their feet? There are a variety of reasons why a horse may be reluctant to lift up their feet, including:

  • Intransigent and rude, the horse is acting. When the horse picks up his or her feet, he or she experiences agony. Keeping the horse balanced on three legs is a challenge for him.

When it comes to your horse lifting up its feet, being able to distinguish between a medical issue and a behavioral issue can assist you in determining the next measures you need to take to cure the problem and keep it from happening again.

A Horse Refusing to Pick Up its Feet Due to Stubbornness

Whether you believe it or not, a stubborn horse that refuses to pick up its feet is extremely frequent. When it comes to stubborn horses, they prefer to do two things: 1) perform the least amount of labor as possible, and 2) test your authority. The act of picking up a horse’s feet might be perceived as extra labour by the horse, and the horse will also test you to see if they can get away with without picking up their feet. If you have just given up on attempting to encourage your horse to lift up its feet, then your horse has won the battle against you.

Hot to Tell if the Horse is Being Stubborn

When a horse refuses to lift up its feet, it can be difficult to determine whether the horse is merely being obstinate or whether the animal is suffering from a medical condition. Whatever the case, your horse must be taught to listen to your cues and to lift up their feet when you want them to. Even if a horse is sick, its feet will still require attention, just as they would with a healthy recalcitrant horse. You should be aware of the following signs that you may be dealing with an obstinate horse:

  • The horse digs its heels into the ground and refuses to budge
  • Whenever you ask the horse to pick up its feet, it will swing its body toward you, causing you to move to get out of the way
  • When you ask the horse to pick up its feet, the horse will swing its body toward you, leading you to move to get out of the way
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These are only a few examples of the stubbornness that I’ve witnessed in horses. It is critical to address this habit as soon as you become aware of it, or else the problem will continue to worsen.

Issues that Cause a Horse to be Stubborn

A lot of horses, as previously said, like to do the least amount of labor possible while also testing your authority and seeing how far they can get away with. It will be all about the horse if refusing to pick up their feet results in them having less job to do. Similarly, if a horse learns that it can get away with not cleaning up its feet, it will continue to practice this negative habit and eventually grow it into a terrible habit.

How to Correct the Horse’s Stubbornness

It all comes down to re-establishing your horse’s respect when it comes to correcting his intransigence. There are several approaches that may be used to accomplish this. One of the first things I would suggest is to train your horse to pay attention to you and your personal space. Visit our articleHow to Get Your Horse to Pay Attention to You to learn more about this topic in depth. Second, tell your horse that failing to pick up their feet will result in them having to do much more effort than they would otherwise.

As soon as your horse refuses to lift up its feet, quickly order them to move out in a trot around you to make them comply.

After they’ve trotted around a few times, bring them to a complete stop.

Even the tiniest attempt should be rewarded.

Increase the length of time you ask the horse to hold its foot in the air by small increments at first. Send your horse out to labor whenever he or she engages in combat with you.

A Horse Refusing to Pick Up its Feet Due to Pain

When a horse is in discomfort throughout its body, it may be hesitant to lift up its feet and go forward. In most circumstances, if a horse refuses to lift up a certain foot, it is generally the opposite foot that is causing the difficulty. While shifting its weight to pick up the hoof, the extra weight on the opposite side of the horse’s body may cause more agony and discomfort, which may encourage the horse to avoid shifting his or her balance to that side in the future.

How to Tell if the Horse is in Pain

Remember that if your horse is reluctant to lift up its feet because of discomfort, the pain point might be located anywhere on the horse’s body. It’s never a bad idea to check the horse’s opposite legs and hooves for heat, just in case. If you discover heat or a sensitive spot, you may be sure that the horse is suffering from discomfort and is unwilling to lift up its feet. Examine the horse’s leg for heat or sensitive regions by moving your hand down the leg and laying your hand over the outside wall of the horse’s foot to check if you can feel anything that is warmer than normal.

Take the time to observe your horse’s stride to see if he or she is limping or favoring one leg over the other.

It is recommended that you consult with your veterinarian if there are no particular outward indicators that your horse is in pain.

Issues That Cause Pain in Horse’s Legs/Hooves

Many health-related difficulties that your horse might be experiencing that would prevent them from shifting their weight in order to lift up their feet are listed below. Here is a list of some of the most often encountered problems:

  • There are a variety of health-related difficulties that your horse might be experiencing that would prevent them from shifting their weight in order to lift up their feet. Some of the most prevalent problems are listed below:

How to Correct the Horse’s Pain

Because of discomfort, if your horse would not allow you to pick up its feet, it is critical that the health condition be identified and treated as soon as possible by a veterinarian. The worst thing you could possible do is to let your horse to continue to suffer while you become annoyed and angry with them for refusing to pick up their feet on their own. Horses may not be able to communicate verbally, but they do so via a variety of different means. The fact that your horse is reluctant to lift up its feet because it is in discomfort indicates that it is attempting to convey that something is wrong.

If your horse is hesitant to pick up a particular foot, try rotating their head to the side of the foot that needs to be picked up instead of the other side.

It’s usually best to have a second person there when dealing with a horse that is in pain, and I always advocate it.

Other considerations include that if you’ve managed to lift a hoof into the air, the horse is very certainly in discomfort. Make careful to put your foot down on the ground frequently to provide rest for the horse.

A Horse Refusing to Pick Up its Feet Due to Balance

Because horses have difficulty maintaining their balance, getting them to lift up their feet may be a frustrating experience. Horses are quite heavy, and their weight should be spread equally between their four hooves. Because horses lack the muscle to properly balance themselves, or because they haven’t yet figured out how to balance on three legs, they may have difficulty keeping their foot up on the ground.

How to Tell if the Horse is Off Balance

Even if there is no obvious sign that your horse is out of balance when it comes to picking up his or her feet, there might be subtle signs that point to the possibility of a balance problem. For starters, if the horse is young or old, they may have more difficulty maintaining their balance. Because these horses have either lost or have not yet gained muscular mass, it will naturally be more difficult for them to maintain their balance and support themselves. If you are able to lift the horse’s foot but you notice that they are continually leaning on you, it is possible that they are out of balance.

Take some time to examine your horse when he’s in the saddle.

When you go through corners, does the horse lower its shoulder and wobble a little?

Issues That Cause a Horse to be Off Balance

However, while an uneven horse is primarily the consequence of underdeveloped muscles, there might be other problems that you should be aware of as well. Neurological disorders such as EPM can have an impact on the neurological system, which can have an impact on the horse’s balance. Your horse may also be in good health and have developed muscular tone; all that is required is that they be taught and encouraged to maintain appropriate balance.

How to Correct the Horse’s Balance

However, while an uneven horse is typically the consequence of underdeveloped muscles, there might be other abnormalities that you should be aware of as well. A horse’s balance can be affected by neurological disorders such as EPM because the nervous system is affected. Your horse may also be in good health and have acquired muscular tone; all they want is to be trained and encouraged to maintain appropriate balance.

Handling Hooves Safely

Making the appropriate choice when it comes to hooves:| Lady Mandy Lorraine (Mandy Lorraine’s maiden name) is a woman who lives in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine (Mandy Lorraine’s maiden name) 1.The first safety guideline is, “There will be no surprises.” Make sure your horse is aware of your presence by approaching in such a way that he can see you (I normally approach diagonally from the front toward his right shoulder) and conversing with him as you do so.

Placing yourself by his shoulder – not in front of or behind his leg, where he may kick you – and approximately two feet out is the best bet; position yourself such that a horizontal line formed from just behind his heels passes in front of your toes.


Tell him to “pick it up” by grabbing the rear of his leg and keeping your thumb relatively near to your hand – a safety habit that is especially crucial with hind legs, as I’ll explain – and telling him to “pick it up.” If he is accustomed to having his feet handled, he may agree to the request right away.

“Pick it up, pick it up,” you say, and then compliment him on his efforts: “Pick it up, pick it up, that’s a good kid!” Soon enough, he’ll be able to pick his foot up on his own when you ask him to.) Once you’ve moved in a bit, be careful not to put your feet beneath his; I lean in against the horse a little with my shoulder and elbow so that my feet slant out – then slip your hand down to cup the foot and gently flex the ankle – (Not only does this allow you to view the sole of his foot, but it also provides you the most control over his leg.) Using your left hand, shift the foot from your right hand to your left so that your right hand may be free to use the hoof pick, which should be rather blunt – it doesn’t need to be sharp to accomplish its function and you don’t want to risk injuring your horse by using a sharp hoof pick.

  1. 4.
  2. To remove caked-on debris, insert the tip into the cleft and run it along one side of the frog and then the other, starting at the heel and ending at the toe, from heel to toe.
  3. 6.Finally, arc your pick around the inside rim of the shoe to remove anything that may have remained stuck there.
  4. Inform your horse that you will be moving backwards to work on his hind limb, if necessary.
  5. The front foot is being picked up.

Lady Mandy Lorraine (Mandy Lorraine’s maiden name) is a woman who lives in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine in the town of Mandy Lorraine (Mandy Lorraine’s maiden name) 8.Continue to lean into your horse as you bend down and maintain your feet clear of his hooves, as you did previously.

  1. Not only are you maintaining contact with him, but if you feel him starting to kick, you can quickly push yourself away from him using your elbow and forearm.
  2. Don’t wrap your thumb around one direction while your hand is wrapped around the other.
  3. In order to maintain control, you must pick up a hind foot during this moment.
  4. Keep your shoulders about parallel to your horse’s hip bones and your head far out of the line of fire as you glide your palm down until it’s directly over the top of the ankle, instruct him to “lift it up,” and pinch his ankle a few times more.
  5. While the foot is rising, move in toward him so that you may place his leg against yours, placing the inside of your foot where his elevated foot would fall down.
  6. Flexing the foot and holding his leg in this manner provides you the most amount of control possible; he will be unable to extend the leg for a kick in this manner.
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Remove any remaining dirt and debris from the back foot in the same manner as you did the front foot, using your pick pointed away from the shoe – though, in the case of an old bar shoe or a heel that’s been worn for a long time, you may need to briefly turn the pick around to remove the last speck of dirt.

How to pick up one’s rear foot |

To complete the opposite side, approach your horse from the front once more, sliding your hand down his shoulder and speaking to him while patting him to let him know you’ve arrived.

Never go around behind him; even the most well-behaved horse may startle and kick out in self-defense if he feels threatened. This article was first published in the March 1996 edition of Practical Horsemanmagazine.

Self-Lifting Feet

When taking up a horse’s feet, Pat Parelli explains how to overcome the resistance you may encounter. QI recently got an elderly horse, and I’m having difficulty picking up his feet. Can you help me out? Despite the fact that I am certain he was taught to do that at some point, he makes it a tremendous nuisance for me every time I attempt to clean his hooves, not to mention a hassle for the farrier. How do I overcome my aversion to handling his feet in order to be more inclined to do so in the future?

  1. The writer Janet Farrow from New Hampshire The average horse weighs 1,200 pounds, which translates to 300 pounds per foot of body length.
  2. Repetition of the procedures I’ll detail here a few times a day will result in your horse learning to elevate his feet instead of requiring you to struggle with his resistance.
  3. The Feet in Front Begin with a good exchange of information.
  4. Instruct him to relax by rubbing his forearm and lower leg, indicating that he should merely stand there with his feet firmly planted on the ground.
  5. After that, go on to the “lift your foot” cue (also known as the “stimulus”).
  6. It’ll make him just uncomfortable enough to have him lift his foot off the ground.
  7. TO THE LEFT: Take a little period to pause, so that your horse is aware that you have stopped rubbing.

Immediately after picking up his foot, remove the pressure and begin stroking his leg again, until he relaxes and places his foot on the ground, as seen in the video.

Soon enough, your horse will begin to understand what you’re attempting to teach him.

“All I have to do now is unweight my foot after she has stopped rubbing.” Repeat the same procedure on the right front leg as you did on the left.

Start with a calm approach, and then lean down and rub the leg of your horse.

For the hind leg, begin by stroking his leg, and then apply pressure to the bursa at the point of his hock, like I’m doing here on the left side.

You can discover it by straightening your own arm and feeling for the little bag at the tip of your elbow; it will feel the same on his hock if you do.

You may even put his coronary band as a stimulation on his rear foot if you want to be creative.

When you have done a few repetitions with precisely timed releases, your horse will figure out that in order to escape the pressure, he needs unweight his foot when you pause after rubbing the saddle.

The most effective technique to resolve this issue is to demonstrate to him that having his legs handled is not a big concern.

Although you may have to train your horse to tolerate it at first, with enough of repetition, he will eventually come to appreciate it.

Parelli’s philosophy and presentation schedule may be found at, where you can also learn more about them.

Teach a horse to accept farriery work

Q: My 12-year-old rescue horse is quite sensitive when it comes to having treatment done on his feet. No matter how many times I ask him whether he has been wounded in the past, he appears to be particularly apprehensive about having treatment done on the back of his feet. Lifting, handling, and picking all four hooves is something I’m capable of doing on a regular basis with him. When the farrier comes, though, things take a different turn. When coaxed and given enough time, my gelding will allow his front feet to be clipped with little difficulty.

  1. At least for the time being, we’re keeping him barefoot since the prospect of shoeing him seems a bit scary until we’ve overcome his reluctance to having his hooves worked on.
  2. What can I do to make progress in this direction?
  3. A: This is a great question, and I really like the idea that you are doing everything you can to assist your farrier between trims.
  4. Don’t try to shoe this horse until he is comfortable with handling and trimming.
  5. Getting a horse to accept being handled by his legs is not something that can be accomplished in a single session.
  6. Because of this, it takes a great deal of trust for a prey animal to accept a person restricting it, even if we don’t mean any damage and would return the leg after a minute or two.
  7. A few years back, during a clinic, I was requested to assist with the care of a gelding who was experiencing a similar situation.
  8. When the lady approached me and requested me to assist her, she didn’t provide me with much background information.
  9. He was standing very still.
  10. I believed that because he was wearing hind shoes, his “hind leg troubles” couldn’t be that serious.

I could feel his stomach muscles tightening as I neared his flank, and as I got close to him, he gave out three lightning-fast kicks as if to scream, “Don’t even attempt it, Cowboy!” As a result of that conversation, I learned about the four-hour battle that three men had with this horse in order to get those hind shoes on.

  • The event had been horrific, and he wasn’t going to allow it happen to him again.
  • The lady persisted, and he has now been able to put his hind shoes on without difficulty.
  • Additionally, the actions needed in assisting them in improving are nearly same.
  • Maintain a fair assessment of your abilities and avoid embarrassing yourself by overestimating your abilities.
  • When dealing with any horse, you must be able to understand the tiny cues that the animal is sending you.
  • As a result, reading the horse is essential, and recognizing stress is your primary goal.
  • Twitching of the skin, fidgeting, discomfort, and overall resistance can all be indicators of tension, even at the smallest level.

If you notice that a horse is becoming agitated while you are working with him, ask him to move.

If he won’t stay still long enough to relax, move him around more.

Depending on his state of mind, you will decide when it is OK to move him or return to the leg handling position.

By relocating him, you are forcing him to make the following decision: He can either remain still and rest while you calmly handle his legs, or he can move around a lot while you manage his legs.

My favorite thing to do whenever the farrier visits my barn is to bring my young horses around to take in all of the sights and noises.

My farrier would frequently take a brief break and come over to them and give them a pleasant rub to ensure that they believe she is well as well.

Ultimately, my objective is for horses to be comfortable with anybody picking up and handling their hooves, regardless of where they are or what they are doing with them.

When working with my young horses, I emphasize these fundamentals and incorporate them into every session.

When it’s feasible, I tap their hooves with my hands to replicate rasp strokes and even the hammering of the nails on their hoof.

a little about the author: Jonathan Field is a trainer and clinician based in Abbotsford, British Columbia, and has over ten years of experience.

Field grew up riding both English and Western horses, and he later worked as a cowboy on one of Canada’s largest cattle ranches, where he learned his trade.

In 2014, he published his first book, The Art of Liberty Training for Horses, which was well received. The original version of this essay appeared in EQUUS issue 459

hoof picking without getting kicked**advice please**

Our 2 year old gelding is fine with his front feet, but after a bad experience with a farrier around 6 months ago, it has been extremely difficult, to cut a long story short, when the farrier attempted to pick up his back feet in the stable, Barney was having none of it and decided to kick, the farrier became very frustrated and said Barney would never be a child’s pony and became quite nasty, pushing him and punching him in the leg while trying to restrain him against the wall Whatever the case, we decided to return to the softly softly approach and worked on him for 6 months, during which time he stopped kicking out whenever anyone came near his back end.

He has come a long way, he is completely bomb proof, nothing phases him at all, he can be walked in heavy traffic past any animal bag signpost, you can touch any part of his body (with the exception of picking up his back feet), he is naturally broken, and he did not blink an eye when we put It had been a while since we had dealt with the matter, but 2 weeks ago he allowed us to do his backs with difficulty, but today he kicked and moved, again and again, the kicks are mostly half-hearted, but occasionally they are forceful, and he hasn’t actually managed to make contact yet with us.

For an hour and a half, my husband and I worked together to pick something up and put it back down without getting kicked.

Do we take a softly softly approach, being firm yet surrendering control if circumstances get too much to handle?

Do we deal with it a little more firmly and impose it on it?

I’m expecting the barfoot trimmer on Tuesday, and I’m not sure what to expect from him.

What can we do to get over this?

Please tell me that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, if that is possible.


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