Help for Heart Worms

How to Determine Why Your Horse Has a Bad Attitude Before and During Rides

If you recently bought a horse, you may not be savvy in determining the cause of behavioral issues. While it's true that some horses just don't want to be ridden no matter who you are or how much training they've had, bad behavior can sometimes be caused by ill-fitted tack or discomfort. If your horse doesn't show bad behavior when being tacked up, you could see poor behavior come out while you are in the saddle, and that is a sure-fire way to get bucked off.

Here's how to figure out what's causing your horse to have bad behavior while getting tacked up or while under saddle.

1. Rule out medical and dental problems

Medical problems, such as colic, can cause your horse to try to bite, kick, or strike you when you cinch the girth strap up for the saddle. The pressure the tightening of the strap places on their gut could easily cause them to try to do anything to get you to stop cinching the strap. Physical problems, such as atrophied muscles in or along the withers, can also cause them to have bad behavior when you cinch the girth strap.

If your horse refuses to take a bit, it may have sharp teeth, which will need to be floated. Therefore, the first thing to do is to have an equine veterinarian examine your horse to see if it has any medical conditions, physical problems, or dental issues. If so, address them immediately before attempting to ride your horse again.

2. Determine whether the tack fits properly

When you bought the saddle and tack, there's no doubt you paid attention to the correct sizes for you, but do you have the correct size for the horse? Horse saddles need to be sized correctly, or else they can cause extreme discomfort for your horse when you are in the saddle or when the horse is being tacked up.

Fortunately, there are professional saddle fitters who can help you pick the right saddle and tack for your horse and yourself. If he or she determines that you do have the proper tack, or if your horse still has bad behavior when being tacked up or when being ridden, then consider hiring a trainer for your horse. Horses have great memories, especially when it comes to experiencing pain. A trainer can train your horse into realizing the new tack won't hurt like the old tack did. 

Talk to a veterinary professional, such as East  Lake Animal Clinic for more information about animal health and behavior.