Unlock Your Horse's Potential

Lexy Nuesch Horsemanship

Roach: September 2

Roach has settled in nicely here. He's figured out the feeding routine & he & Cactus have become quite the pair.

As expected, it's taken a bit to get Roach caught when it's time to begin work. Because of that, we spent a few days working on Approach & Retreat to where I could rub his face & neck without the expectation of being caught.

He's got a curious disposition, which is great to have in a horse.

Once I had a halter in my hand, he knew what I was after. He'd allow me to rub his face, but he had no interest in having me walk around to his neck.

When a hard-to-catch horse was concerned, I used to use the "move your feet" method. Make the right thing easy (facing me/allowing to be caught) & the wrong thing difficult. However, I found that this made both the horse & I dread the catching process each day. Sure, that method works okay for a few horses, but for the majority, it wasn't reliable. They figure out they can outrun me in the larger pens. These days, I'd rather use positive reinforcement &/or the help of a smaller pen, especially in the early stages.

To help with this, Roach will start out in a smaller pen where I can walk in & catch him as he gets with the program & learns that catching doesn't involve moving away at the sight of the halter & that it's no big deal while utilizing positive reinforcement methods. Eventually, he'll be moved to a bit bigger pen & eventually back out with the herd.