Pawing/ Stomping In the Float

Discussion in 'Problem Horses' started by Anna_Smiler, Nov 11, 2009.

  1. Anna_Smiler

    Anna_Smiler Well-known Member

    Hey everyone,

    just wondering if anyone has the same problem or can shed a bit of light on my current situation.

    My horse is fine to load, and take off a float. He is great, never a problem, he's always very keen to geton the float. Both by himself and with other horses. However he has a terrible habit of pawing and stomping whilst in the float. He does it more so when he is by himself. Some days he is better than others and wont paw at all, while other days he paws from as soon as he gets in there to the moment you let him off. It doesnt matter what side he is on, if he has feed, if he has boots on, if another horse is with him. Nothing matters. Its not a terrible habit, just quite annoying, especially if you taking him on a long trip. Listening to over an hour of pawing does get quite annoying and does test ones patience.

    So i was wondering if you had any advice to stop this behaviour, or if there was a technique i might be able to try myself that might curb what he does. But like i said before he's always fine to load, doesnt scrable or anything like that, doesnt kick out, always happy to wait patierntly to be taken off, and doesnt rush back. He just paws with either one of his front feet, everything else about his floating is fine.

    So any light anyone might be able to shed on this would be muchly appreciated.

  2. Andhi

    Andhi Gold Member

    Will follow this thread with interest as Tally does this as well - though only on the trips home. I think he thinks if he does this he will get home sooner - the sod
  3. Anna_Smiler

    Anna_Smiler Well-known Member

    hahaha. yeh. its good to no someone else is out there with the same problem. like i said its not really bad, just annoying.
  4. beagle

    beagle Well-known Member

    Sounds like the horse is just keen to get to where he's going!!!
    A bit like a sheepdog when the ute starts up : "ripper! going to work going to work going to work" - the anticipation of work starts the heart a good way.
    Maybe your horse just knows he's going somewhere different/exciting & is super keen to get there & he's just showing his impatience!
    Hobble-training springs to mind to stop pawing but under correct supervision & certainly not in the float first,rather in a safe environment to get him hobble-trained,so he knows what it's about.I'm sure a good trainer like Watkins or Saltriver could help you out if the habit is really bugging you.
  5. Keiko

    Keiko New Member

    My horse has the same issue. Although I find once I am driving he will stop so he can get his balance.
    Have you tried him in any other floats? Maybe he will do better in a more open style?
    As I find it can help to open all the windows (if the float has them) to make the float feel more airy & open. When I have to stop for a while, I will open the side door so he can look out. I think he can feel a bit claustrophobic & gets bored
  6. Anna_Smiler

    Anna_Smiler Well-known Member

    yeh i have emailed watkins about it. and they had 1 suggestion i could try myself.
    otherwise they said i could send him up there, but they said its one of the hardest "habits" to fix and they have had horses they havent been able to help. but i might just send him anyways some time next yr wen he gets bk from spell, they said they could try leg restraint trianing with him.
  7. Anna_Smiler

    Anna_Smiler Well-known Member

    yeh iv tried him in a few different floats, doesnt seem to matter. but like u said wen we stop, mine also likes to poke his head out the side door and that stops his pawing. interesting.
  8. Sugar's Mum

    Sugar's Mum Gold Member

    check out MOnty Roberts book from my hands to yours.

    He uses iron rings hat he puts around the horses coronet band. They are tied in place so they just sit like a ring around your finger. When teh hrose paws they bump up and down. Distracting the horse.

    Apparently it has the added benefit of improving the condition of the hoof.
    I have never tried it but this man has been involved with horses his whole life and I really love his methods.
  9. Merlin

    Merlin Well-known Member

    What about a cuff and chain, racehorse trainers use them for horses that dig/paw. The cuff sits around the top of the knee, with a metal chain hanging down, so when they paw/dig the chain hits them and they stop. Also used for horses who run up and down the fence line:)

    Just a thought:))
  10. Eventer4Ever

    Eventer4Ever Well-known Member

    Yep Mocha does exactly the same. Such a tool face. hahahah
  11. Ace

    Ace Well-known Member

    Harley does exaclty the same thing, only on the way home. I try and make sure he has plenty of hay for the trip home but he still paws on the home leg.
  12. Anna_Smiler

    Anna_Smiler Well-known Member

    this sounds like an idea....can u buy them anywhere or do u just make them?
  13. Merlin

    Merlin Well-known Member

    I havn't seen any, mind you I havn't been looking sorry :( Would be quite easy to make up, a leather strap for above the knee that is adjustable, and some metal chain links from the hardware shop say 30cm long, maybe line the strap with some sheepskin so it dosent rub and somehow loop the chain onto the strap :)
  14. Pockets

    Pockets Gold Member

    Just use a chest strap off a rug and some chain-too easy!! It needs to be pretty firm so rubbing shouldn't be a problem...
  15. ash

    ash Active Member

    :D just turn up the music.
    this was told to me by a very reputable trainer.:)):))
  16. corporate pride

    corporate pride Well-known Member

    my friends horse does it in MY truck! he's got anexity issues and was gelded late, but i also have a loud scary tailgate that takes forever!
    he does get betta but sometimes he loses the plot completely and has 4 legs off the ground! so we think it's a fear, he falls over i floats so he doesn't get floated, he gets straight on and we had to make him wait at the top of the ramp off loading coz he almost dragged my down it once, so he's learnt paicence!
  17. preston90

    preston90 New Member

    i know a lady that haa an Arab, does the same thinh wethor its on the float for a few minutes of a few hours. He prances on the spot for the farrier, even when theres one leg being held up. Its quite amazing to watch. But sorry I have no answers. Atleast you horse would be a bit tireder when they get off the float :)
  18. Maree4

    Maree4 Gold Member

    Winnie used to do it, worse on the way home. Its impatience. I leave a car length in front of me at the lights and if he does start pawing i very slowly creep forward and hit the brakes (not so you make him fall over but enough to give him a jolt to say STOP IT). He soon stops, and he doesn't do it so much anymore. The other thing I tried was leaving him in the float when we got home and make him wait until he stopped pawing then I got him off. The trouble with that with my boy was he stopped as soon as we got home so he got me there. I still made him wait though so he didn't expect to be unloaded as soon as we pulled in.
    Otherwise just ignore it, not much you can do, maybe put an extra peice of rubber down to save your float floor.
  19. GoWelshCobs

    GoWelshCobs Well-known Member

    i do the slowly stop and brake thing, my mare does it on tyhe last few streets home or when were are almost at a place she knows, how shw knows where she is i dont know
  20. Unruly Steeds

    Unruly Steeds New Member

    It may be a boredom habbit.
    Does he do it while your in there with him?

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