Shire Cross - training help please

Jodie & Ru

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Shire Cross - training help please - with pics!

Hi guys

Well, i'm one of those lurkers who just sits and reads all your intersting posts but am actually after a bit of advise now.

As of Wednesday i will be starting to help look after a rising 4 shire cross, he's name is Zeus and he's absolutely stunning. Zeus is going to be backed next year so i'll basically be doing ground work with him and generally getting him more used to being handled - lots of grooming :). He's actually pretty well behaved and big gentle giant, although a little clumsy and not so sure he's aware of his own size - a fair bit of growing still to do too!

On Wednesday we're having an instructor in to help start him on the lunge, i'm going to be there too so can hopefully pick up some tips.

Now to get to the point, was hoping you guys could maybe suggest some exercises or games i could practise with him. He's still not fantastic with his feet but this is something we're working on. As i say, the more handling the better at the moment - that is the main aim.

Thanks in advance.

Oh will make sure to get some pics on Wednesday - he really is a beaut with his flowing mane and feathers.
 
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jowyles

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Ohh you could try in hand pole work. Dexter loves jumping etc alot of shire x's do and this might make him realise he needs to pick his feet up! You could also use those pole pod things to raise the poles and this practise will help build the muscles he needs to pick his feet up! Blimey tho if i had feet the size of a shires I don't think I would be keen on picking them up! I know what you mean dexter gets so clumbsy with his feet and just kicks things out of the way!
 

Mehitabel

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with a horse that size it's important they respect your space - being squashed by a horse that big will have worse consequences than by a pony. so i'd work on leading, walk, trot, stand, moving quarters around on command, and really get him listening to you, focused on you so whatever else is going on he never forgets you are there and that you are not to be mown down.
grooming, letting you touch everywhere, pick feet up and not lean on you (good preparation for treating wounds - again, a horse that size must be well mannered and put up with things without a fuss).

some gentle pole work will be helpful to teach him to be careful with his feet as well! as he is still growing, keep it all very low-key - not a lot of trot work on the lunge, and i definitely wouldn't be cantering yet while he is still clumsy and growing. his size will make it hard for him to balance in a school, so try to work his brain more than his body without overfacing him mentally.
 

Jodie & Ru

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Here he is. Just try to get him used to me at the moment. Spent about an huor with him last night, just touching him al over then gave him a good groom. He was pretty good as it goes. I just need ot be very aware of those big hoofs of his as he's not so careful you know. :)
 

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mogadoga

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I gave my horse instructions for feet. Because his too are huge and just spindle all over lol. 'Down' when he randomly tries to climb over me lol. Whilst placing his foot back. And 'Foot' for me to pick them up as he was never taughtthat bless him. And a firm 'No!' now lets him realise hes not to do that again, whatever it was which he did.

As for exercises and games, i do stretching with alex. Back hoof to touch back of knee. Stretch front legs. Make him bend his head for a treat. I also play with him in the arena which he loves, but when he gets too excited his legs sprawl everywhere and we have to calm down haha. But al leat it has him listen to me when he does it. Silly mongrel what he is :D But before doing that we did alot of ground work so he knew not to squash mummy. He backs up. Stands (although looks for sweets on the floor *shakes head* lol) and walks and trotts if asked. And stops again when asked. To be honest all of this took a good year.

Good luck!
 

jowyles

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Aww hes lovely! Dexters a Shire x Haflinger hes 13 and took alot of work to get him to behave! Alot of it is to do with the respect he has, he will not barge me but barges his owner because she only feeds him! To stop him barging though we have a leadrope with a chain on the end and we loop this under his chin, its very good if he starts to run off because it tightens and he stops right away!
 

Jodie & Ru

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We did great last night, he had a 20 mins light lunging with the trainer, just lots of work in walk and some trot work. He was so so well behaved and caught on really quick - this was his 3rd time on the lunge. We put a roller on him too (just to get him used to having the weight on his back), although he was lunged in a dooley(sp?).

I then gave him a bath as he worked up quite a sweat, and a nice groom. He is still getting used to all this handing but coping really well and loving the attention. Was very interested in the sponge i was washing him with i must say and not initally too sure about the water but enjoyed it in the end and was happily unching on his hay while i washed him down. Well that's us so far. Here he is last night. What do you think?
 

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