PART 2 - Ground Activities You Might Be Doing With Your Horse That Can Create Aggressive Behavior and a Loss of Control From the Saddle

Mar 01, 2021

Last week I discussed how there are some ground activities that you may be doing with your horse that could create aggressive behavior in your horse. This week I am going to share with you about a fun game that can go wrong if you are not careful. 

Aggressively Playing With A Ball

Playing with a ball is an excellent exercise for horses. Still, if a horse is allowed to play too aggressively with a ball, with ears pinned back trying to kill the ball, it can create hormone changes that can alter the horse’s behavior to be more aggressive toward you. Charging instincts can develop where you might wind up playing the role of the ball in your horse's eyes. You can stop this behavior. When your horse gets too aggressive, just take the ball away from him for the rest of the day.  

The above blog header photo displays a horse happily playing with a ball. The photo below demonstrates a horse aggressively playing with a ball.

Undesirable behaviors can be turned around by what you do and don’t allow. It is crucial to understand anything you allow on the ground can affect your horse’s response from the saddle. Always apply appropriate leadership practices rather than reprimanding the horse’s behavior. It is never the horse’s fault.

May the spirit of the horse be with you!

Carolyn Resnick

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