View Full Version : now a problem - colt freaked out when put a lead rope on him

29th September 2009, 01:03 PM
hi everyone,

Thank you to everyone who left name ideas for my cob colt. Just to let you know he arrived safe and well yesterday morning.

I am going down to take the promised pics in half an hour as the ones i took yesterday didnt come out very well.

We've come up against abit of a problem with the little lad. Hes very nervous which is to be expected with a 6mth old foal, altho i can walk up to him and stroke his head and give him nibbles. But wen i got up to him yesterday evening i decided to put the leadrope on him and once he realised he was caught he completely freaked out and i lost grip and he bolted around the paddock! it took myself n hubby another hour to get hold of him. once my fella had hold of him he managed to calm him down then he unclipped the leadrope n let him go and he was fine, but obviously i'm alittle concerned about how we are going to get around this. The people i bought him off only put a headcollar on him and never taught him to lead, so when they put him in the trailer i can only imagen the 'tug of war' snario that must of gone on pretty much wat i saw when they forced him to get out of the trailer.

Anyone got any ideas on this one??
I do practice some natural horsemanship and so far this has worked with him, but if he just freaks out wen on the leadrope then how can i let him know it will be ok? Should i just get him to trust me first? then try again? dont want to fight with him.

I had a mare which had a foal about 6 years ago and after the filly was born we started to teach her to lead and had no probs, but i feel abit stuck with this one.

Any suggestions pls???

Thanks Holly

29th September 2009, 01:16 PM
I wouldnt have said it was that much of a problem, one of my fillies was unhandled untill she was 6months old so hadnt even been handled/had a headcollar on!

Do you have a stable to work with him in?

Instead of clipping the leadrope on, just loop it through so it will slide out if he bolts again. Perhaps if he is used to being led from just a headcollar try teaching him pressure and release that way and gradually work up to using a lead rope!

Good luck!


29th September 2009, 01:25 PM
Thanks i will try looping it thru next time.

No i dont have any stables where i am, just a field shelter. I need to catch him so i can feed him outside the gate as the others are just too greedy.

thanks alot!

My Crazy Clan
29th September 2009, 02:49 PM
He will come round, its all new to him remember he needs time and lots of patience, youngsters are great for this we as owners learn with them.

I would spend the next few weeks sitting with him, letting him play with the lead rope, clip him on then clip him off, leave it lose and then apply only slight pressure then release.
Once he gets the hang of it he will be well away.

My foal was completely wild when I got him and he shouldn't have been because his brother was a saint, the owners didn't do anything with him.

29th September 2009, 03:12 PM
i've just been down and spent sometime with him, and hes been a right softie. He was nevous abt you touching his neck, but in the space of 15-20 mins i was able to touch his neck, crest, back and legs without him even flinching. He even came close to me for a snuggle! I'm so happy i could cry lol. I pulled around lightly with his headcollar and he wasnt bothered, so i assume he must just be not keen on the leadrope idea. But we'll get there in the end.

Thanks for your suggestions, will defo give them ago.

29th September 2009, 03:15 PM
I guess i'm too much of a worry goose these days!

My Crazy Clan
29th September 2009, 03:46 PM
You can't help but worry with youngsters though :)

29th September 2009, 03:59 PM
It wont take long at all, I bought Fudge as an un handled 5 mth old he is now almost 8 mths and can catch, lead pick feet, tie up and put a rug on all through taking it slowly doing just a little every day I spent the first week doing nothing but sitting in the field with him to realise i wasn't a threat then when it came to the lead rope put it through but didnt try to lead just to get him used to it...dont worry about it he will be fine soon.

29th September 2009, 06:49 PM
You've already had lots of good advice from other members and it sounds as though he's coming round fine. I think Rheas advice of letting him explore the leadrope and clipping it on and off should work well. That's the approach I took with Bracken and he came straight off the New Forest as a 'wild' foal. He soon learnt that nice things happened when he had his head collar on and he forgot his auction experience. (except he still doesn't like men in wax jackets)

29th September 2009, 09:02 PM
its normal for babies to freak out when they first have anything around thier heads, it restricts them and they panic, simply,

clip the rope on but do not pull on it, or use a foal slip or eadcollar with a longer tassle on it then you dont even need to clip anything on, if you pull infront he will probably freak out so you want to encourage him infront but be near his bum and push his bum, or get someone to push his bum for you, its easier with little ones as you can do it yourself,

the other way you can do it is with a really long rope thread it through the head collar around his bum and then back towards the front that way you pull to go forwards and he gets a push on his bum telling him to move as well as a slight tug on the front

29th September 2009, 10:15 PM
Some great ideas, thank you all very much.

Thats the only problem when your not in a livery yard, theres just never anyone to get any advice from.


10th October 2009, 11:35 AM
Jake was the same when we first got him. He was 9 months old and had only ever had a headcollar on but no leadrope. The previous owners had just let him follow mum which was obviously a bit of a problem when we bought him. I didn't get to go when they picked him up but from what I heard it took ages to load him and at first when the leadrope was put on he kept rearing. When he arrived on the yard he went straight into the foal stable and he was left for the night to settle in. Thing was because he was in the stable had to get him used to leading and tying up as soon as possible so I could actually muck him out.

Sat with him for a while at first in the stable and played with the leadrope and let him chew on the end of it so he could see it wasn't going to kill him. Then just started clipping it on and off the headcollar, I also tried leading him round in the stable a little bit first and he soon settled down. When he came out the stable he was a bit stubborn and kept stopping so in the end I just walked till the full length of the rope was out and then let him come to me rather than keep pulling him. We did this for a few days and each time I put a bit more pressure on the lead rope until he started leading.

He's been a dream ever since, tho sometimes still has his stops because he finds something he wants to sniff.

24th October 2009, 08:11 AM
Definately won't take long to get this sorted. I have a 20' rope that I use for my babies - this allows me to let them go a little and then to place myself in an anchoring position. Feet wide apart and bend knees a little and keep your weight back. Good gloves are essential.

Then I reel them in again! There is a possibility that he's not had much handling.

The last weanling I bought was 6mths old and been running inthe hills until a couple of weeks before I got her. I kept her in a large yard for a few days - primarily to be able to worm her well. I clipped an old length of rope onto her headcollar - long enough for her to notice it was there but not so long that she could tread on it.