The Art of Natural Dressage

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 Post subject: Pony issue
PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2012 11:33 am 

Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 3:12 pm
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This may be a really silly question! And you may think....what on earth is she on! But if for instance a typical native pony was regularly turned out with perhap a relatively highly strung horse, would that influence their behaviour?? :roll:

I have recently bought a 5 year old native mare who is proving a strong opinionated cheeky mare, she was originally turned out with young Andalusian colts! Could this influence or am I totally off track?


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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2012 2:10 pm 
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Hmm... you think she got strong opinionated and cheeky from the Andalusian colts? Are Andalusian colts different than other colts? I guess every animal is shaped by its peer group, but to change its character fundamentally? I wonder...

Besides, what's wrong with being opinionated and cheeky? Lot's of people spend a lot of time and effort to get their horses to show a little more initiative. A strong opinion is a helpful trait if you can appreciate it :f:

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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:37 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 9:58 pm
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Location: Western Cape, South Africa
I do think if they were skittish and unhandled she would be inclined to follow their lead especially as a young horse. However 5 years of age is when they start to realise that they can push boundaries so it may just be her age? From what I have seen it is around 4-6 that they start to establish their place in the herd....(ie they no longer just take what they can but start to fight for the resources).
I have seen many highly strung horses (adult) become calmer by placing them with older calmer secure horses but never the other way around? I do believe though that her mother will give you a good indication of how her nature will be. My friend who breeds is very careful to select calm mares as a good part of their reaction is learnt from the mare in the first year. So if the mother is wary of humans and over reactive, the offspring tend to be too.......
You don't say at what age she was removed from her mother? If she was pulled early (before a year) and placed with the colts then there is a possibility she learnt the behaviour from them?

As Volker said, rather look at it from a positive point of view, at least you will know very quickly what she likes and doesn't!!!! :funny: :D

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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 1:57 pm 
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Location: Netherlands
Interesting question! 8)

I don't have the answer, but I think that you can compare it to humans: if you switch jobs and suddenly become part of an environment where people jokingly swear a lot, a bit of a rowdy bunch, you will start to adapt to that and probably also take part of that attitude (maybe a bit more assertive?) to the other parts of your world (friends, family etc.). But then you go to church on sunday and you're automatically at your best behavior again, right up to monday morning when you're back on the job with your mates.

So now I think about it, I do think that your environment influences how you act and respond, but at the same time you're the one who decides how to act in each situation.

And two boysterous stallions doesn't necessarily mean a high-spirited mare. She could also become very sour (being pestered all the time), or dull (if you ignore them they will move away sooner), and much more.
By the way; do you mean the big British pony breeds when you say native pony? Because if I look at native british ponies I see a huge array of breeds and characters; from very feisty or very slow Welsh Cobs to dull shetlands and hyperactive irish cobs. Breed and character aren't the same: Blacky and Sjors are both Shetlands, but their characters are miles apart.
(they both like to kick each other though ;) )

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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 3:00 pm 
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Miriam wrote:
So now I think about it, I do think that your environment influences how you act and respond, but at the same time you're the one who decides how to act in each situation.
I would say that it very much depends on the developmental stage of the horse. The earlier in development, the more the horse will adopt things from peers around him. Especially if the weaning happened too early.

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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 6:54 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 7:51 pm
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Location: Netherlands
Interesting!
I think you do have a point over there, but on the other hand even a foal can switch from bullying other foals :twisted: to walking nicely on a halter to the barn with the human and then go back to the pasture beating up his friends. ;)

I guess it boils down to the question: what's character and what's behavior? I wouldn't know..

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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2012 5:05 pm 

Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 3:12 pm
Posts: 11
Well! After all that, and not behaving how I felt she should be! She has had 2 wolf teeth removed and is now undergoing physio for a long term hamstring issue!! So, she wasn't being naughty, she was trying to tell me she was not feeling right and pain and I was not listening! :blush:
However, she is on the mend now and getting stronger by the day, and a much happier little girl :thumleft:


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 Post subject: Re: Pony issue
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 12:08 pm 
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Location: Vienna, Austria
Good to hear that you found out what was bothering her! :f:
Like so often, it was not a misbehaviour, but a very understandable reaction. Hope she heals quickly!

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