Building a New Horse’s Confidence

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When buying a horse, you’ll be faced with many horses for sale. Each horse for sale will have a different temperament and a different confidence level. If you opt to buy a horse with a lower confidence level, one of the first things you’ll want to do when you bring that horse home is to build up his confidence. Here are some ideas for building a horse’s confidence so that you and your new horse can enjoy many new experiences together.

Give Your New Horse Time

Buying a horse and moving that horse to a new home presents that horse with many changes in a short period of time. The best thing that you can do to build a new horse’s confidence is to give him some time to settle in and relax in his new stable before you proceed to do any training. Remember that your horse’s routine, feed, situation, and even friends have been changed. Your approach to riding and training will be different from your horse’s previous owner, so be forgiving and kind as your horse gets to know you and your expectations.

Work on the Ground

Groundwork will provide your horse with a foundation and the confidence to help when you mount up. Groundwork can help teach your horse to trust you, and will give him time to adjust to your training style. Working your horse in a round pen or on the lunge line will help to get him physically and mentally ready to be ridden in his new home.

Additionally, through groundwork you can ask your new horse to confront and overcome new obstacles and challenges. Present your horse with foreign objects like umbrellas, balloons, and plastic tarps. Ask him to approach each object and inspect it, and then work him around the object. As the horse learns that the challenges you are presenting to him will not harm him, it will deepen his trust in you and his reliability under saddle.

Keep Training Positive

As you train your new horse, keep things positive. Set your horse up to succeed in his training by presenting him with small, simple lessons to learn. As he successfully learns the things that you are teaching him, he will gain confidence in himself and trust in you.

It can be tempting to tackle new training issues and obstacles with your new horse right away. This can be a big mistake. If you overface your horse with too many difficult challenges, his confidence will be eroded and it will be more difficult to build his confidence in the future.

After looking at many horses for sale and finding the right horse for you, take things slow and build his confidence. The foundation you lay in the first few months with a new horse will lead to a better relationship in the years to come.

TOPHORSE–browse horses for sale or place an ad to sell horses

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