Obsessed with grazing

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Obsessed with grazing

Post by Cyndi on Tue Jul 06, 2010 10:31 am

How would you deal with a horse who appears to be obsessed with grazing? It doesn't matter how long Fanny is out in a field, when I bring her in to do groundwork or ride her, all she wants to do is graze (if I'm in an area with her that has grass). I know horses are grazers, but gosh, most of them don't do it every waking moment of their day!
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Cyndi

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Re: Obsessed with grazing

Post by fin on Wed Jul 07, 2010 4:01 pm

Mine do! Seriously, though, it's pretty disrespectful. I never let Connor eat when I'm with him but he still gives it a go if I'm slack with him. I have to be very focussed on how I do things, for example opening gates out riding, or if I have to dismount for something, or he takes advantage. It is embarrassing to watch him with other people as he is stealthily naughty. By the time he's got his head down, it's too late. I have to be quick with my cues but it's all so automatic now I had to have a good think before I replied. I think you have to concentrate on taking her attention away from the grass all the time you are with her. When I lead Connor, I always use a rope halter and he follows me like an angel, but if I put him in his leather headcollar, he can use his head as a weapon. I've never had this with any of my other horses. They don't try to eat when tacked up. I think the regular ground work that you already know should help. Just bring it into play while you are leading her to the place where you want to work.
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Re: Obsessed with grazing

Post by Cyndi on Wed Jul 07, 2010 4:09 pm

Thanks Fin.

Fanny's usually pretty good about having to move. I "chirp" at her and tap the ground with the end of the whip and she knows it's time to go. I guess I really don't know what a grass obsession looks like; perhaps this is just normal horse behaviour I usually have a rope halter on her too. I try not to pull on her, so she's learning to lead nicely as soon as I make certain hand movements with my lead hand.
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Re: Obsessed with grazing

Post by FlorayG on Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:26 pm

KItty never bothers when she is with me, in hand or ridden, but when my mate Steff is 'in charge' (ha ha) then Kitty is always stopping for a snack and Steff has real trouble. On the other hand, Dancing doesn't usually bother much about grazing but lately they are so hungry - there's no grass - she has been grazing when walking out and she just hauls me over to where she wants to be and has to have a pretty sharp reprimand. So it may be you, or it may be Fanny's temperament!
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