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Very Lazy Horse

Hi! - I have a very very very lazy horse, Romeo. He will go OK at the walk, but once I ask him to trot, he gets cranky and hardly has any forward motion. Even a crop does not help. It takes a long time to get him to lope, and all my energy to keep him in it. The only way he will go is if I race him or if I go in the field with another horse. I know he CAN go when he wants to, he is one very fast horse, but the problem is giving him the incentive and WANT to do it! I love him very much, and he is a very sweet and affectionate horse, in no way aggressive, but he is so lazy I don't know what to do. If you could help I would appreciate it so much. Thanks a ton! - Liz

Hi Liz,

First and foremost I would rule out anything physical (including saddle pain). I know you said he can move out. But if there is any pain in his feet, legs, upper body or teeth, he will not want to move. Once anything physical is ruled out, I would loosen this horse up on the ground first. I would do a lot of longeing and or round pen play. I would 'flag' him around (using a palstic bag attached to a 5 ft. wand). You put substantial pressure (energy) into the request first (just enough to get the response), then, as soon as the horse is going as you want, lower the pressure in the request to a minimum to keep the motion as you desire. You control the space, not the horse. If he is still reluctant to move, try it in a small space (he'll feel the pressure more in a small space). You are more at risk in a smaller space. This means be careful you do not push the horse so hard he might kick or want to run over you. Use the lightest pressure possible to get the desired actions (response).

Let me know how it all goes and thanks again for your question.


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