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Franklin Levinson's

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Stud colt that bucks

I have a beautiful young stud colt, even people who know nothing about horses have stopped on road while in the arena and looked at him, many have talked to me about how beautiful he is, his daddy has won the national team penning title several times, I bought this copper colt with blond main and tail out of Kansas with some teeth problems (growing in crooked and had hoof injury that has healed with vet help and grown out of hoof leaving a perfect thankful horse) I started this colt in round pen with no hurry, I can point with 'no' lunge line and he will work in circle, stop, roll back, change leads, and riding him has been a joy, he will come from anywhere on 100 acres when I call his name, SO WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?! I started him under saddle this summer as a two year old going on 3, every time I try to get him over a short lope he will throw into bucking, I have done everything I know. He has thrown me couple times, can you give me some suggestions, he is just too perfect of a horse and looks and actions to not get this corrected, he will go all day long or stand till the cows come home if you stay below a short lope.

Thanks for any assistance, Dan

Hi Dan,

Sounds like you have a wonderful horse there. Here are a few suggestions: first thing to look at, even with a young horse, is any back pain, leg, feet or mouth pain (mouth pain that may be left over from the previous mouth problem). If the saddle does not fit 100% properly, if the colt still has residual mouth pain (which will come up as soon as you start to collect up for a lope) or is habituated to expect pain of any sort, this will prompt bucking. Ruling out any pain anywhere is the first thing to look at. If he is pain free but anticipating pain, it will take a while for him to realize there is not pain coming. The way to move through that particular situation is to lunge the horse for a while at various speeds, with and without you on the horses back) and to ride in a relatively small area and do a lot of serpentine movement with a lot of trotting and short loping into the center of the figure eight, stop and trotting and loping off on the other lead. Second is to trot a lot of medium circles and to ease the horse into lopes for a few yards and then back to trotting and then to short lopes and then back to trotting again. This is to be done in a very relaxed way over a few weeks. Very light and appropriate use of leg pressure is required. No kicking of any sort. Very good riding from the 'seat' will work much better than any kicking. Eventually you will ease the horse into loping in a straight line. Most bucking occurs when the horse is moving straight ahead. So, if you work a lot of small to medium circles and serpentine movement and do all as slowly and as relaxed as possible, your horse should settle within a few weeks and understand he will not experience pain, and can move forward at the lope and stay relaxed. Cantering is an exciting gate for a horse. Trotting is a more relaxing gate and an excellent conditioning gate. Horses can trot a lot farther than they can run (canter). So, I suggest a lot more trotting in the ways suggested until the colt settles more and then really relax and gently ease the horse into loping in arcs and circles before going in straight lines. Do a lot of bending and flexing the horse laterally as well. Good Luck and please keep me posted.

Sincerely, Franklin

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