We have a new case study on hand from March 2017 and he’s a quarterhorse cross with something gelding that is 5 years old. His owners bought him almost as a rescue as the previous owner didn’t want him. Upon purchase they tried to ride him and it turns out that he is very adverse to being ridden and will buck until he gets what he wants. Both owners are not interested in getting him used to a saddle as it can be dangerous until he gets over whatever it is that got him there in the first place, so I was called in to help out.
Cajun is actually a very nice horse. While his owners experience him either volatile or full of energy that can’t be easily contained, with just an hour or so of working with him slowly on the ground, he was readily drawn in and out with minimal effort. It seems that he likely has had quite a bit of work done with already as he responds great to all groundwork cues he is given once he is paying attention. I personally didn’t have much issue with him on the ground which is a great start. Even the owners seemed to have noted that he attaches well and will just hang out with you once he is hooked on.
Cajun’s problem in the end is that he can’t stand to be ridden. At the time of this writing I have been there for two sessions and both times been in the saddle. His first session was about seeing where he was at and I didn’t experience much trouble from him, which seemed to surprise his owners as they experienced the bucking. On his second session we started with groundwork but quickly moved to the saddle. I needed to know how much it would take to get him to buck out. It didn’t take too long before he did and I left the saddle at a safe point to sadly watch him buck himself out to the other end of the arena.
As it goes, you can’t leave a horse if they have removed their rider through one means or another and it was back in the saddle I went for another 30 mins of just working the hind end. Happily he finally turned loose to me and I worked both sides of him until it was the slightest of pressure of my leg to get him to shift left or right with no pressure on the lead rope as I did these rides in just a halter and lead rope.
The goal is to have him be able to ride comfortably at least at a walk and trot in the arena. There should be lots of updates over the month as I’ll be working on him twice a week and we’ll see where he is at the end of the month. Stay tuned!