A horse may detest being ridden for a variety of reasons. The first step in determining whether your horse’s misbehaviour is physical or psychological is whether the problem is physical or psychological.
Get your horse examined by a veterinarian, farrier, and physiotherapist to rule out any health issues.
- Tack that isn’t correctly fitted
Ill-fitting equipment is one of the most common reasons horses detest being ridden. Bits and bridles that are too small can be painful for the horse and cause head shaking.
In contrast, an ill-fitting saddle will cause pressure points on the horse’s back and discomfort while riding. The presence of white hairs under the saddle indicates that the equipment is inadequate.
Your saddle fitter should evaluate your horse every six months, as musculoskeletal changes may require adjustments to saddle components. It goes a long way toward making riding more enjoyable if your horse’s equipment fits and is comfortable.
- Overuse of training aids
You should only use the bare minimum of training aids while riding. The most frequent training aids include whips, spurs, martingales, side reins, and tie-downs. All training aids can be avoided with thorough training and skilled riding.
However, you might find that using a training device helps your horse’s current training level. Keep in mind that accessory straps like martingales should only be used for a short time while your horse recovers from the problem. Many experts have discovered that if these training aids are used for an extended period, the horse will work against them.
- Health Issues
If your horse has many health issues, riding may be difficult for him. The sooner you figure out what’s wrong, the sooner you and your horse can get back to riding.
Riders’ most common health conditions are back and leg pain, musculoskeletal pain, arthritis, and hoof abnormalities. It’s not always easy to find out what’s wrong, so get your horse thoroughly examined from all angles.
Keep in mind that horses will try to mask their discomfort for as long as possible. They could survive in the wild for millions of years because of this adaptation. As a result, it’s a good idea to get a health checkup every year to catch problems early.
You can use the ridden horse ethogram and the equine grimace scale to see if your horse is in pain.
Horses, like humans, have unique personalities, and some are plain unsuitable for riding. Although most horses can be trained to carry a rider, they enjoy it depending on their attitude and temperament.
It’s also possible that a horse isn’t in the mood to ride on that specific day. Horses, like humans, have bad days, and being gentle with them during those times is a wonderful gesture.
- Previous confrontations
If a previous rider has abused a horse, it may develop lifelong hate for riding. It’s always far easier to break a horse’s trust than it is to rebuild it. An anxious horse will need a lot of time, love, and attention to learn to like riding again.
Inexperienced horses may initially resent being ridden since they must perform harder than before. They will, however, develop accustomed to depending regularly, and many will begin to like the activity.
- Rider Issue
The riders may be the most significant factor in horses’ distaste of being ridden. As riders, we must always improve our abilities and fitness to assist horses in transporting us.
A large or inappropriate rider can cause a variety of problems for the horse. According to a study, horses can safely carry up to 20% of their weight. Back pain and musculoskeletal difficulties are unavoidable for a rider too big for the horse.
Even if weight isn’t an issue, an unfit rider is more likely to sit unbalanced on the horse, resulting in topics such as unequal muscular growth. As a result, having someone examine our riding frequently and warn us if we’re not sitting properly is an excellent idea.
Rider inexperienced, overly harsh, uneducated, or afraid can also cause problems. It’s natural for the horse to get agitated or nervous if the rider is scared. They figure that there must be something to be concerned about if the rider is restless.