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Hi everyone, I have three horses, a bratty shetland, a gentle haflinger mare and our newest addition, a 14.3 hand haflinger gelding. I just brought the gelding home 5 days ago. And he is stubborn. He fights the snaffle (simple D ring). Just puts his head down and won't turn, gave a little buck and pawed a bit. I got him to settle down, only rode him around 15 minutes and ended on a positive note, but being a timid rider I am now a bit scared to go back on. The lady I bought him from said she had him for only a few months, her parents bought her a barrell horse and she spends all the time with that one, and was selling off 5 horses, keeping one. She claimed he was gentle....blah blah. He is so friendly, comes right up, puts his nose in the halter, bridle, takes the bit,doesn't mind the saddle being cinched. She had started him in a mech. hack 3 days before I bought him, I don't know why. Also said she used a tom thumb and this snaffle. He is trained and will pull a cart she told me, but I have no interst in that. Is it a good idea to send him away for training for a month? I don't know a thing about bits, my other two ride in snaffles without incident. Just some advice, please. I am a timid rider in my middle age, my mare doesn't scare me but this one does a bit.
Welcome to the board!

I'm sorry you're having problems with the Haflinger. How old is he?

Do you know if his teeth have been floated? If not, it would be a good idea to do so. A lot of bit issues are caused by teeth problems and it just might fix the problem or if not, eliminate one of the causes.

We love pics here! HINT! HINT! [Wink]
Karen ~ Trails  
Joe Paint Gelding
Paoli, IN

"My treasures do not sparkle or glitter, they shine in the sun and neigh in the night."
[Image: th_horse-galloping.gif]  

He is 11, and he just had his teeth floated the day after I got him home, but vet said he really didn't need it. Someone mentioned that because he has pulled a cart he may need a stronger bit? I think he needs training, must have gaps somewhere.
Stronger bits don't give control and you can drive a well trained horse in a snaffle.

Either the bit is not right for his mouth and it's causing him pain or he has training(or untraining) issues that need to be addressed. You might be able to handle the training on your own but if you are scared to ride him it will be harder on him and you. So a trainer might help but work with the trainer so that you can learn how to do it and how to work him.

I would start by teaching him to give to the bridle and then to the bit on the ground. He should give his head to the left, right, tuck his nose in and put his head down with the halter and the snaffle. Then I would ground drive him and get him light to the bit again before riding him.
I havent been on the boards much lately, so I am just seeing this post. The title caught my eye because I have a 5 year old Haffie mare. Let me tell you... she's a BRAT! She's stubborn. She's snotty. She's full of herself.

And I am having to work through it all with constant and consistent training. I have been having bit wars with her for the last couple of months, (I didn't ride her enough before that to really notice it as the problem that it truly is. I chalked it up to not enough exposure instead of her attitude.) She just had her teeth done a few weeks ago. The vet said it wasn't bad enough to really "need" to be done, but it was easier to do it now instead of calling him back out later. She is in a snaffle d-ring also. Her previous home had started her in a hackamore about three months prior to my buying her, so she had some saddle time on her but she was DEFINATELY still green. My trainer was out this weekend and we both went over everything that I need to do to get her to accept the bit and to stand patiently while being saddled.

The point to all of this is that Haffie's can be stubborn, bratty, conceited twits but with a firm hand and consistent training they can be brought around. I wouldn't trade mine for anything. The attitude that she has is exactly what I have always wanted in my horse, I just have to work with her to channel it in the right direction. If you are afraid of him and he doesn't respect you then maybe his temperment just isn't the right one for you. If you are looking for a horse to stretch your boundaries, then getting a trainer to work with both of you may be the perfect thing to do.

Good luck with him. Hope to hear more from you on it.

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