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Kids Pony

  • 11-12-2022 1:32pm
    Registered Users Posts: 10

    Looking for some advice please on our pony.

    We bought a 4yr old 12hh mare in the summer. Kids are all beginners and we don't have experience with ponies, but reared on farm, so used to large animals.

    Anyway the pony is playing up lately on myself (adult) when i lead her, she rears, pulls, pushes, wants to stop eat grass, basically will try anything to make leave the lead go...

    Ive tried leading her around in circles, but it just makes her worse...

    I feed her hay and grass, no meal as that drives her scatty. She is stabled every night.

    Kids have seen her act up on me, and are afraid of her.... She kicked one of the kids when they tried to check her hoof one day when she was in the stable eating meal... We put it down to our inexperience at the time and to leave her alone when she eats....

    She tried to kick out at me when i brushed along her hind leg... So i don't groom there anymore...

    She is like a pet lamb for my other half, when he turns her out or takes her in... He thought i was mad, until the kids backed me up...

    I've never been rough or hit the pony, so i can't understand why she is doing this, and im too nervous now to deal with as im afraid she will rear and strike me...

    Kids are very scared of her. They can only ride her on leadrein, but she hasn't been rode out by an adult since September..

    I want to sell her and buy an older gentle pony, that will be safe as a pony can be for the kids.

    I can't ask previous owners, as they had someone sell her on their behalf... They said the kids lost interest and bought her in lockdown... But that would have meant she was 2 when they had her... Im wondering if she was like this with them.

    Shes definitely not suitable for a beginner or leadrein.

    Id be very honest with anyone buying her, she needs an experienced home.

    Any ideas why she is acting up on me, and any advice? Go with my gut and get rid? Im afraid to buy a second pony for company incase she corrupts that too.. She has plenty of food, nice stable and well looked after, i dont know why she is so aggressive with me


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,466 ✭✭✭White Clover

    if they get the upper hand on you they will continue to misbehave. The only way they will change is for you to gain back this upper hand. Easier said than done and can be dangerous.

    As you say, maybe your best option is to part ways and buy a more experienced pony.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10 Grace2019

    Thanks for your advice.... I'd never thought about getting her to loose condition, to sap a bit of energy out of her. She was a bit on the thin side when we got her, and she got good grass and hay all Summer, and was probably overfed and not rode out enough. She was wormed also but always ravenous for food. She's in a paddock at the moment with no grass because its got plenty of shelter for her, and she has it ploughed up... So just giving her haylage morning and evening.

    I don't have a lunging ring with sand, i have a gravel yard, thats level, would that be ok to lunge her? I could make a ring with electric fence poles, if i put her out in the field she will just eat the grass.

    I've been telling her to walk on when i want her to walk with me on lead.... Am i confusing her, does she think I want her to trot?

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,983 ✭✭✭✭Base price

    @anthony500_1 has given you good advice and tbh I reckon that you should seriously make contact with either a local livery yard, riding school, hunting, racing yard and ask them for help with your pony be it learning how to look after if properly to lunging, long reining it etc.

    I appreciate that you bought this pony in good faith but from reading your comments you don't have any experience in dealing with a green pony. Unless you get some professional help then you are denying the ponies future potential and putting your children at risk of injury.

  • Registered Users Posts: 322 ✭✭farisfat

    A 4 yr old is very young for beginner kids.You would need a schoolmaster pony for them...usually 10 plus.

    Bringing the kids to lessons would be the best thing to do till they gain some confidence.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 10 Grace2019

    Thanks everyone, brilliant advice here from you all.

    I've the kids going for lessons already, so I'll ask about them taking a loan of our pony and schooling her. We might have her ready to try again by the Summer.

    I really appreciate you taking the time to respond to my post, thank you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,410 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    We have our cob pony 2 years now and it’s been a learning curve.

    they 100% play up to see if they can be the boss at their new home, ours was great to bridle the twice we visited before buying but when we brought her home no way would she let us bridle her, perseverance and she realised she wasn’t the boss, now 14yo can work away herself.

    its shocking how little feed they need, anything extra and they definitely get frisky.

    if she hasn’t been ridden in a few days I’ll lunge her in a field, long rein and run her round in circles for 10 minutes gets the freshness out of her and she’s good as gold to ride

    daughter can’t ride at moment as she’s recovering from surgery. We’ve actually dropped pony off for some “schooling” with a local girl we know, she’s a professional jockey.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,356 ✭✭✭

    Never let anyone behind a pony (whether they are eating food or not). The rule we have here is directly behind a pony is kicking territory. I have never saw them kick but I would not like to test them. A small thing could frighten them even a bird.

  • Registered Users Posts: 465 ✭✭anthony500_1

    100% Agree back end of a pony is no place for man woman or child. To much risk, as you say a starling could spook them. That's all it takes

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,757 ✭✭✭Odelay

    Haylage is a high energy food for a pony. Hay would have less energy.

    Unless you grew up with ponies or horses, you will need some professional help.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 10,983 ✭✭✭✭Base price

    One of my favourite expressions - Never approach a cow from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction.

    @Grace2019, you have some constructive suggestions on the way forward with this pony and I sincerely hope it works out for you. Maybe you could get back to us in the future and let us know how things are progressing.

    As aside, is the pony a Shetland by any chance - please say it's not.

  • Registered Users Posts: 772 ✭✭✭Cattlepen

    Sorry but you say she doesn’t get meal but that she tried to kick the child when it was eating meal??? Don’t give it meal. A bit of hay is enough. Unless you’re dedicated and don’t want to let it beat you bring the kids to a riding school. Plenty of sober ponies for them to learn on. No danger. Social aspects ant the craic of a summer camp etc make it more pleasant.

    I’ve seen too many daddies and mammies turn into psychos a very short while after putting their kids up on ponies. Growling and leaping of the ground in temper like the nations cup depended on the next jump. Get rid of that pony and go riding school. Some will actually lease you a pony so if the interest wains yer at no great loss. Good luck either way