Some horses can be very difficult to catch in the field for many reasons, in my horse’s case he is the leader of the herd and displaces dominance while with the other horses.
Other horses can just associate being caught with being ridden and work.
Actually catching your horse
Horses do not like direct eye contact so when catching your horses does not stare directly at them.
Make sure you bring feed so they can hear the sound of the feed in the bucket.
Watch your horses behaviour if they move away turn your back until they stop then approach slowly again, you may have to repeat this.
When they are looking directly at you with their ears forward they are indication that they would now like to have some food, so continue with slowly walking forward.
Step 1 –
Firstly I would try putting your horse in a separate pen on his own, as here he has no need to display dominant behaviour.
If this doesn’t work you need to start to associate being caught with food and fun.
Step 2 –
Catch your horse on non riding days and give him some treats and a groom or even work lightly on some tricks , so that he starts to associate being caught with food and a good scratch then simply put him back out !
Step 3 –
Reward your horse for coming to you with food and treats and always give them there feed or a treat before putting them back out!
Although it takes quite a bit of time and effort to achieve this if your horse is as stubborn as mine, it is totally worth it for you and your horse.
Simply doing this can bring on your bond and trust by leaps and bounds and of course saves you time catching in the field! Hope these tips have helped you!! Don’t forget to let me know how you and your horse have progressed doing this!
A few safety precautions –
1) Horses in herds can be dangerous to go into with a feed bucket so make sure you know what horses kick out and barge.
2) If your moving your horse make sure t ask the yard owner’s permission and make sure the field is secure as your horse may try to get back to the others.
3) I advise wearing your riding hat when with a heard of horses.