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M.C.Statz
07-17-2017, 05:17 AM
Writing a scene. Our group of travelers are riding by horseback with saddlebags, supplies, etc. They come across a man needing help. One offers her horse for him to side on. Since she won't be carrying gear, is it reasonable to expect she will keep up the pace?

They aren't in a ride-the-horses-to-exhaustion type hurry, and have several days of travel to go.

jclarkdawe
07-17-2017, 06:41 AM
Horses and people traveled together all the time. For example, most wagon trains had the people walking rather than riding.

Jim Clark-Dawe

Beanie5
07-17-2017, 06:44 AM
If its a Clysdale no if its a pony possibly in good shape a person can do 15-20 miles a day and a horse 25-35 miles if they alternate riding on a good size horse who is fit they will keep up with other slow pokes ( wagons are slow and easy to keep up with on foot ) quick query while i'm here Jcd are you familiar with the term propping in reference to horses?

AW Admin
07-17-2017, 07:39 AM
For a decent rider on a good horse 25 miles is not that big a deal (http://macallisterstone.blogspot.com/2008/01/big-horse-posts-collected.html). For a trip lasting several days, with several riders, it makes more sense to have pack animals (mules for instance) and one or more spare horses.

jclarkdawe
07-17-2017, 04:39 PM
There are so many variables here that the question needs a lot more definition. For instance, the amount of extra gear you can put on a horse that is being ridden isn't much. If you're traveling through wilderness for longer than a day or so, usually you'll ride one horse and lead a second horse. Food is heavy.

In the situation presented, where suddenly you end up with an extra person, you could re-arrange the loads on the horse, and get an extra horse by changing the pack loads around. No pack horses? Take your lightest two riders and put them together. Or have one person walk for an hour and then switch with someone else. If everybody takes a turn, they'll only walk an hour or so a day. Or the walker can use the saddle horn or stirrup of a ridden horse to provide additional momentum and support.

Thing is it seems from the original post that the group is not in agreement, which suggests even move fundamental problems.

Remember that as you travel, your loads become lighter as you use up supplies.

Propping is a sudden stop on the forehand, where the horse slams his front legs into the ground. Rider will frequently go over the horse's head. The term is frequently used in horse racing as it can be a violation of race rules, even if the jockey did not intend for it to happen.

Jim Clark-Dawe

blacbird
07-18-2017, 08:23 AM
If its a Clysdale no if its a pony possibly in good shape a person can do 15-20 miles a day and a horse 25-35 miles if they alternate riding on a good size horse who is fit they will keep up with other slow pokes ( wagons are slow and easy to keep up with on foot ) quick query while i'm here Jcd are you familiar with the term propping in reference to horses?

What has happened to the punctuation keys on your device?

caw

Beanie5
07-18-2017, 08:25 AM
What has happened to the punctuation keys on your device?

cawThey! get confused....sometimes so I try not . To let them out.

M.C.Statz
07-20-2017, 01:21 AM
Thing is it seems from the original post that the group is not in agreement, which suggests even move fundamental problems.



Well inferred! How did you figure?

Appears that, depending on the exact circumstances, it's not totally impossible, but definitely challenging?

jclarkdawe
07-20-2017, 03:07 AM
Inferred from the fact it seems to be one rider's decision to offer help rather than the group. A group makes decision on how the group can best handle the decision.

It's up to you how challenging it would be.

Jim Clark-Dawe

EmilyEmily
08-21-2017, 02:22 PM
As someone who grew up with horses, I can assure you that it is possible to walk beside walking horses for short distances, but it gets tiring. Horses walk a bit faster up and down hills, and the person will be exhausted after a time. If I were one of your characters, I would insist that all riders take a turn walking so that no one is left behind.

You would NOT want to put two riders, no matter how light, on the same horse for a distance ride. The second rider would be positioned over the horses mid-back area, and this will tire a horse quickly. (This is the reason saddles on race horses and jumpers are placed almost over the horse's withers). It would always be better, though not ideal, to put more weight in saddle bags on a horse with one rider. Nobody who knows/cares about horses would allow two riders on one horse over a distance.

The breed and confirmation of the horse can indicate its endurance capabilities. (A "pony" is not a breed, but a height. An adult equine standing less than 14.2 hands at the withers is considered a pony, unless its breed is Arabian, in which case it is always classified as horse). If I were one of your characters, I would not treat each horse equally in assessing what kind of load or rider it should carry, but would quickly assess each horse's confirmation and temperament (let me know if you want more info on this: I can happily talk horses forever).

M.C.Statz
08-22-2017, 03:09 AM
(let me know if you want more info on this: I can happily talk horses forever).

As long as you are happy to talk, I am happy to listen.

EmilyEmily
08-22-2017, 05:57 PM
As long as you are happy to talk, I am happy to listen.

In this situation, I would assess the newcomer's riding experience and the types of horses. If he/she did not know how to ride a horse, this might eliminate mount possibilities for him/her. A nervous horse, or an animal with unfortunate habits (my mom and I once had a horse that would try to scrape inexperienced riders onto the walls of the arena if frustrated, and we had one that would bite at the toes of any rider not savvy enough to realize what was gong on), would require an experienced rider. Similarly, a sensitive, valuable horse's mouth could be "ruined" by an inexperienced rider who cannot keep a light hand, or who can't keep his/her hands away from the horse's mane or the saddle; a valuable horse can learn bad habits from an inexperienced rider. Actually, come to think of it, I wouldn't trust anybody I don't know well: the newcomer can't ride my "special" horses. He/she just can't. And if I saw him/her mistreating a horse, or sawing at a horse's mouth due to inexperience, I would make him/her get off and walk. Horse people are funny that way.

You need to decide what kind of tack is being used. A PP mentioned a "saddlehorn", but those are only found on Western saddles. You could have Western saddles in the American West, or another part of America, but probably not in Europe (I'm American and have been living in Europe for a decade, and have yet to see a Western saddle here, which is fine by me). A Western rider holds the reins in one hand, and (ideally) guides the horse with reign-on-neck signals and heels, though--because of the saddle horn and big saddle--many inexperienced riders are given Western-trained horses and tack so the can hang onto the saddle horn and pretend they know how to ride a horse. This usually results in sawing on the horse's mouth (resulting in a "hard" mouthed horse).

English tack features a smaller saddle that is placed nearer to the horse's withers (shoulders). There is no saddle horn. A rider in an English saddle doesn't "hang on" to anything; balance and legs keep you on the horse. You guide a horse with heel pressure (no kicking) and slight pressure on reigns (an experienced rider's "cues" to the horse should be invisible to onlookers). If your book is set in Europe, this is probably the type of tack. If this is historical, consider whether there might be sidesaddles for women (this will depend on time period and the women's social class, I suppose).

When horses travel in a group, they like to stick together (herd animals). If one horse spooks and runs, others in the group may try to follow. You don't want to put a "spooky" horse in the front of a trail ride. Some horses are kickers, and--I'm not making this up--the custom is to tie a red ribbon in the tail of a horse that is known to kick other horses and people. Of course you don't want to put a kicker in front of other horses in a trail ride, either. Some horses are "buddies", and will try to walk close to each other; it is quite sweet to see this.

A slender horse with long neck and back won't be able to carry as much weight. This type of horse is what you see in flat racing (like the Kentucky Derby), steeplechasing, and dressage. Historically, these would have been "light" mounts used for hunting or riding, fast and agile, but not great for long distances. I would not put a lot of weight in saddle bag supplies on a horse like this.

Any draft breed (Clydesdales, Percherons, Shires, etc.), or non-breed with draft confirmation, would be good for pack weight. These are the work horses you see pulling the Budweiser wagon. They are large, thick horses with feathered legs. They aren't fast and aren't used for sport, but they are strong and have placid temperaments. If any of these are in the group, I would expect to put more weight on them, and even though they are big, I would expect them to be calm enough for an inexperienced rider.

A smaller horse with a short back and high-set neck (Arabians have this confirmation) is going to be the best for distance riding. Even so, I would not pack too much weight on this type because this is the horse that would happily carry a rider and remain "fresh" longest. I would put this type in the front of the group to keep everyone moving along.

If your group is made up of medieval peasants, for example, they aren't going to have blood horses/actual breeds of horse in their group. The "mutt" (grade) horses can be divided into tasks based on their confirmation and temperament, though.

It is a very, very bad idea to let hot, sweaty horses drink large quantities of water. Doing so can result in colic, which can kill a horse. So when your group encounters a stream, riders should allow horses a quick drink, but the horses should not be drinking huge amounts. At the end of the day/ride, any horse that is very sweaty/hot will need to be walked by hand until the horse is cool, and then the horse can be allowed to eat/drink.

M.C.Statz
08-24-2017, 06:26 AM
Thank you!

What do you know about mustangs?

EmilyEmily
08-25-2017, 03:24 PM
Where are the mustangs? Are we talking American West, or, for example, Chincoteague or similar?

My first thoughts when I hear the word "mustang" today are my utter rage and disgust at Barrack Obama for signing the bill that allowed the horse slaughter industry to begin again in America. If your novel is contemporary, and deals with people who are interested in horses/mustangs, this might be something to research. A lot of American mustangs today end up as horse meat, and it is a brutal, disgusting industry. I live in Europe now, and I know that much of the horse meat consumed in EU countries comes from North America (wild/feral horses, but also former race horses and unwanted pets). I get really emotional when arguing about why consuming horse meat is, to me, reprehensible, but I suppose that isn't what your thread is about.

As for wild/feral horses themselves, inbreeding can be problematic and has contributed to some physical issues within some herds (this is partly why I asked where your mustangs are located: the Chincoteague ponies are on an isolated island). But I'm not convinced inbreeding is as much a problem as the pro-slaughter/"control" groups argue. Wild/feral horses would suffer from hoof related issues, parasites, and tooth issues when older (domestic horses have dental care, called "floating" once a year, and tooth issues in older horses can kill the animal); wild/feral horses' life spans are must shorter than those of domestic horses, but only because they don't receive medical care (though there are some programs, in some areas, in which vet attention is administered to captured wild/feral horses).

There are mustang adoption programs in the US. When I was a kid, we saw the annual Pony Penning when the Chincoteague herds were rounded up and foals auctioned, but I could never convince my parents to buy one because those horses' confirmation isn't exactly great (so the pony wouldn't be well suited to the dressage and three-day eventing my mom and I did), but also my parents believed that the animals wouldn't be temperamentally suited to living as a domestic horse. But the Chincoteague ponies were cute: fuzzy and scruffy, and a lot of pinto patterns.

I do know the American mustangs are descended from domestic horses (maybe Spanish barbs, but also escaped/outcast farm horses, I'm sure). So they are not strictly a breed in the sense of a horse type that results from an organized pedigree program. This means that there is diversity in appearance and type between mustang herds according to geographic location.

I think it would be a tremendous pity if the American mustang is ever extinct.

But again, how any of this relates to your book depends on your novel's geographic location and time.

M.C.Statz
08-25-2017, 06:15 PM
You definitely are passionate!

Book is set in post nuclear holocaust North America, geographies ranging from Nova Scotia to California

EmilyEmily
08-25-2017, 07:14 PM
You definitely are passionate!

Book is set in post nuclear holocaust North America, geographies ranging from Nova Scotia to California

If I were a survivor, I would try to liberate/borrow domestic horses. Horses in pasture will survive through warm weather on grass if they have a water source.

M.C.Statz
08-25-2017, 07:29 PM
It's set several years afterward. Any domestic horse is in use or dead :(

EmilyEmily
08-25-2017, 07:58 PM
It's set several years afterward. Any domestic horse is in use or dead :(

OR released/escaped and joined a mustang herd. You could identify a former domestic horse because it would probably still be wearing a halter (no bit, just the strappy structure that goes around the horse's head). A lot of people leave halters on their horses when they turn them out into the pasture; you use the halter to lead the horse (you can clip a leadrope to the halter, or just hold it). IDing a former domestic horse is really the only way they are going to end up with enough horses for transport (and no broken bones).

We had post and rail fencing around pastures (no electric wire), and rails fall off or are pushed off with some regularity. If horses in a post-and-rail enclosure are starving, it is highly possible that one will knock over a rail and escape. Or that someone will just let them go to take their chances.

Halters can be brightly colored nylon or leather.

M.C.Statz
08-25-2017, 08:13 PM
Nice! I was considering having a character pose as a mustang tamer. Doesn't actually have to be one, but should have a little credibility

EmilyEmily
08-25-2017, 08:14 PM
Speaking of wild horses and nuclear disasters, I live fairly close to Chernobyl. There are a lot of wild horses that now live and thrive in the exclusion zone. In fact, the disaster has allowed for a population boost to a special kind of (endangered) wild horse that lives here, the Przewalski's horse.

So maybe, in post-apocalyptic North America, there would be a swell in mustang populations as well. (Maybe one of your characters will think about that).

(There are so many animals--and some people--thriving in the Chernobyl exclusion zone: it hasn't turned out exactly as scientists had predicted).

EmilyEmily
08-25-2017, 08:18 PM
I don't know what a "mustang tamer" is, but as a horsey person, I would probably stay away from wild horses in the event of an apocalypse. Just because I wouldn't want to risk breaking bones as I worked with a skittish horse. That could go very wrong with no hospitals. It takes a loooong time to train a horse, and a newly trained horse is not going to be a steady mount for a while. So I would advise spotting a few horses wearing halters. Some horses might actually approach people in that scenario! And we used to have brass name plates on our horses' halters...your people could be approached by a formerly domestic horse, and then maybe another one or two (former domestics) could approach.

M.C.Statz
08-25-2017, 11:45 PM
Style over substance. Matters more the machismo appearance of the wild horse tamer than actually being able to do it, if that makes sense.

jclarkdawe
08-26-2017, 05:48 AM
After several years, I doubt you'd be seeing too many horses still with halters on. The halters would break, get caught, or the horse would rub it off. Branding would be one sign that does tend to last.

A lot of domesticated horses would not survive long in the wild. Feral horses need to have good feet without any corrective shoeing or other footwork. A feral horse will travel 30 to 50 miles a day and needs feet capable of doing that and being able to outrun any predators. Terrain traveled would also be a big factor in this. I own a Mustang and he's capable of walking over a stone wall.

Depending upon how intensive you want to go at it, you can train a horse in a few days to be an adequate mount. I doubt that humans would use the warm and fuzzy approach of horse training. Ranch horses in the American West were frequently trained in less than 30 days. Halter breaking can be done by the simple technique of roping a horse, and tying it to a log. The horse will learn quickly that dragging a log around means he'd better pay attention to the rope around his neck. Yes, you'll probably lose a few horses in the process, but that's not a big deal. Even with significant predators, horses are a very successful breeder in the wild and the population would probably be growing.

Definitely horse trainers would exist. It's a skill and a skill that people would pay for.

Jim Clark-Dawe

EmilyEmily
08-27-2017, 01:27 PM
After several years, I doubt you'd be seeing too many horses still with halters on. The halters would break, get caught, or the horse would rub it off. Branding would be one sign that does tend to last.

A lot of domesticated horses would not survive long in the wild. Feral horses need to have good feet without any corrective shoeing or other footwork. A feral horse will travel 30 to 50 miles a day and needs feet capable of doing that and being able to outrun any predators. Terrain traveled would also be a big factor in this. I own a Mustang and he's capable of walking over a stone wall.

Depending upon how intensive you want to go at it, you can train a horse in a few days to be an adequate mount. I doubt that humans would use the warm and fuzzy approach of horse training. Ranch horses in the American West were frequently trained in less than 30 days. Halter breaking can be done by the simple technique of roping a horse, and tying it to a log. The horse will learn quickly that dragging a log around means he'd better pay attention to the rope around his neck. Yes, you'll probably lose a few horses in the process, but that's not a big deal. Even with significant predators, horses are a very successful breeder in the wild and the population would probably be growing.

Definitely horse trainers would exist. It's a skill and a skill that people would pay for.

Jim Clark-Dawe

1. No, you absolutely cannot train a horse "in a few days" to be a dependable mount. That is absurd. What's more, someone who can't ride a horse can't learn in three days. The "American ranch horses" in the old West were ridden by experienced horsemen: they may have been working under saddle after 30 days, but they were not fully "trained" yet, and it would have been dangerous for an inexperienced rider to attempt to ride them.

2. Nobody "halter trains" a horse by tying it to a log, and a halter is not a "rope around his neck"! A "halter trained" horse will walk calmly beside a person who stands at his left: tying a horse to a log by a rope around its neck will do nothing to bring a horse to this point of trust, and it will do nothing to accustom a horse to walking on a halter lead (in fact, it will probably have the opposite effect). This sounds like bad cowboy fiction.

3. Feral/wild horses in America are ALL descended from domestic horses that were released or escaped. Obviously it is very possible for a domestic horse to survive. Horses are herd animals and a domestic horse would quite easily go along with a herd.

4. I have never seen a horse with a visible brand! And I grew up around horses, in a very horsey world. I can't imagine anything tackier (or more likely to draw scorn and criticism) than a visibly branded horse! The only "brands" I have ever seen have been on Thoroughbred ex-races horses: they are tattooed inside their lip. I'm not saying there aren't ignorant idiots (probably out West) who do this, but they aren't the norm, and the majority of American horses are not branded.

4. A nylon halter would not break off. And again, a halter has nothing to do with a "rope around his neck": comparing a halter to a rope around the neck makes about as much sense as comparing a knee brace to diving flippers.

- - - Updated - - -


After several years, I doubt you'd be seeing too many horses still with halters on. The halters would break, get caught, or the horse would rub it off. Branding would be one sign that does tend to last.

A lot of domesticated horses would not survive long in the wild. Feral horses need to have good feet without any corrective shoeing or other footwork. A feral horse will travel 30 to 50 miles a day and needs feet capable of doing that and being able to outrun any predators. Terrain traveled would also be a big factor in this. I own a Mustang and he's capable of walking over a stone wall.

Depending upon how intensive you want to go at it, you can train a horse in a few days to be an adequate mount. I doubt that humans would use the warm and fuzzy approach of horse training. Ranch horses in the American West were frequently trained in less than 30 days. Halter breaking can be done by the simple technique of roping a horse, and tying it to a log. The horse will learn quickly that dragging a log around means he'd better pay attention to the rope around his neck. Yes, you'll probably lose a few horses in the process, but that's not a big deal. Even with significant predators, horses are a very successful breeder in the wild and the population would probably be growing.

Definitely horse trainers would exist. It's a skill and a skill that people would pay for.

Jim Clark-Dawe

1. No, you absolutely cannot train a horse "in a few days" to be a dependable mount. That is absurd. What's more, someone who can't ride a horse can't learn in three days. The "American ranch horses" in the old West were ridden by experienced horsemen: they may have been working under saddle after 30 days, but they were not fully "trained" yet, and it would have been dangerous for an inexperienced rider to attempt to ride them.

2. Nobody "halter trains" a horse by tying it to a log, and a halter is not a "rope around his neck"! A "halter trained" horse will walk calmly beside a person who stands at his left: tying a horse to a log by a rope around its neck will do nothing to bring a horse to this point of trust, and it will do nothing to accustom a horse to walking on a halter lead (in fact, it will probably have the opposite effect). This sounds like bad cowboy fiction.

3. Feral/wild horses in America are ALL descended from domestic horses that were released or escaped. Obviously it is very possible for a domestic horse to survive. Horses are herd animals and a domestic horse would quite easily go along with a herd.

4. I have never seen a horse with a visible brand! And I grew up around horses, in a very horsey world. I can't imagine anything tackier (or more likely to draw scorn and criticism) than a visibly branded horse! The only "brands" I have ever seen have been on Thoroughbred ex-races horses: they are tattooed inside their lip. I'm not saying there aren't ignorant idiots (probably out West) who do this, but they aren't the norm, and the majority of American horses are not branded.

4. A nylon halter would not break off. And again, a halter has nothing to do with a "rope around his neck": comparing a halter to a rope around the neck makes about as much sense as comparing a knee brace to diving flippers.

jclarkdawe
08-27-2017, 04:51 PM
[QUOTE=EmilyEmily;10248961]1. No, you absolutely cannot train a horse "in a few days" to be a dependable mount. That is absurd. What's more, someone who can't ride a horse can't learn in three days. The "American ranch horses" in the old West were ridden by experienced horsemen: they may have been working under saddle after 30 days, but they were not fully "trained" yet, and it would have been dangerous for an inexperienced rider to attempt to ride them.

I said "adequate," not dependable. Nor did I comment on rider skills. There was a contest, which I believe has some online videos, of Mustangs being trained in a very short time. There's a lot of difference between horses' level of training and I'm looking at a basic riding horse that could be made to go. I'm also looking at humans in a situation where survival is a major issue and horses are a part of that survival. Much as I prefer gentle training methods, and much as I prefer well trained horses, the basic requirement of a horse that I could make to carry me for a day is a lot less is a lot different.

2. Nobody "halter trains" a horse by tying it to a log, and a halter is not a "rope around his neck"! A "halter trained" horse will walk calmly beside a person who stands at his left: tying a horse to a log by a rope around its neck will do nothing to bring a horse to this point of trust, and it will do nothing to accustom a horse to walking on a halter lead (in fact, it will probably have the opposite effect). This sounds like bad cowboy fiction.

A rope around the horses' neck teaches the horse about restraint. It has absolutely nothing with teaching a horse to trust -- all it does is teach the horse that a rope around the neck means the horse had better not pull against it. This is a well documented training method used in the American West. People who lived during the period described it. Ben Green is a good source for training methods in the American West as he bought and trained horses in Texas in the 1920s and 30s. He is not the most reliable reporter on some things, but his approaches to training are consistent with other sources.

3. Feral/wild horses in America are ALL descended from domestic horses that were released or escaped. Obviously it is very possible for a domestic horse to survive. Horses are herd animals and a domestic horse would quite easily go along with a herd.

Yep, all of the feral horses in America are from domestic horses. But a lot of domestic horses need careful trim to stay sound, are rather large and need more feed, and they're not predator smart. Some of them would survive, but I think you'd see a sharp decline in the numbers. Geldings might form herds, but could be social outcasts. The bachelor herds for wild and feral horses have a very defined role in the eco-system. The stallions that were released out West to "improve" the wild horses required a man with a rifle to help get them going. Otherwise they'd have the crap beat out of them by the wild stallions.

4. I have never seen a horse with a visible brand! And I grew up around horses, in a very horsey world. I can't imagine anything tackier (or more likely to draw scorn and criticism) than a visibly branded horse! The only "brands" I have ever seen have been on Thoroughbred ex-races horses: they are tattooed inside their lip. I'm not saying there aren't ignorant idiots (probably out West) who do this, but they aren't the norm, and the majority of American horses are not branded.

Depends upon where you are and what you're looking for in horses. My present horse has a freeze brand on his neck and I've had several with hot brands. Out West a lot of horses are hot branded. With a large supply of horses on many ranches, hot brands are an easy way to tell who owns who. Going into Wyoming are livestock checkpoints and having a visible brand on the horse to prove ownership makes life a lot easier. Many states have brand registries. You might consider them tacky, a lot of people find them an easy way to tell horses apart.

4. A nylon halter would not break off. And again, a halter has nothing to do with a "rope around his neck": comparing a halter to a rope around the neck makes about as much sense as comparing a knee brace to diving flippers.

Nylon breaks down in sunlight over the years. I've had horses break nylon halters, usually at the connections. A horse can get pretty desperate when it gets caught.

Jim Clark-Dawe

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jclarkdawe
08-27-2017, 05:27 PM
You might also want to look at the situation with cavalry and replacements from battle. When you're facing replacing a thousand or more soldiers and horses quickly, you aren't going to worry too much about quality and you are going to force train people and animals quickly. I doubt it was very pleasant, but it was effective at returning combat efficiency to units quickly.

Jim Clark-Dawe

Ziast
08-28-2017, 05:10 AM
1. No, you absolutely cannot train a horse "in a few days" to be a dependable mount. That is absurd. What's more, someone who can't ride a horse can't learn in three days. The "American ranch horses" in the old West were ridden by experienced horsemen: they may have been working under saddle after 30 days, but they were not fully "trained" yet, and it would have been dangerous for an inexperienced rider to attempt to ride them.

The kinds of horses they were breaking and using were the type to be safe in 30 days. Not finished by any modern standard, but on working ranches they didn't have time to invest in training a horse for a year or more before putting it to work and letting the ranch hands ride it. They got a lot of wet saddle blankets, were handled rough, but did their jobs fast. They often weren't ridden by experienced people. Depended on the ranch you were at. The advantage, was majority of people in those days were used to livestock and horses in some regard. Even if the hand grew up riding horses, it wasn't a promise they were experianced as they learned with no teaching and trail and error. Even today, those in the 'cowboy' culture look down on those who take lessons.


2. Nobody "halter trains" a horse by tying it to a log, and a halter is not a "rope around his neck"! A "halter trained" horse will walk calmly beside a person who stands at his left: tying a horse to a log by a rope around its neck will do nothing to bring a horse to this point of trust, and it will do nothing to accustom a horse to walking on a halter lead (in fact, it will probably have the opposite effect). This sounds like bad cowboy fiction.

Have never heard of the log, that doesn't sound like it would work at all. I have heard of people tying weanlings and yearlings to a mule or donkey and letting them live together for a few weeks. Horse learns quickly that the mule isn't going to tolerate any funny business and is going to drag that baby around whether it wants to go or not.



4. I have never seen a horse with a visible brand! And I grew up around horses, in a very horsey world. I can't imagine anything tackier (or more likely to draw scorn and criticism) than a visibly branded horse! The only "brands" I have ever seen have been on Thoroughbred ex-races horses: they are tattooed inside their lip. I'm not saying there aren't ignorant idiots (probably out West) who do this, but they aren't the norm, and the majority of American horses are not branded.

Lots of them over in North America. Ranches frequently brand their horses, mostly QHs. I know of several high bred Warmbloods that have visible white brands on their shoulders. I know a few others that have hot brands where just the skin and hair is raised. Harder to see those. Standardbred are branded on the neck with their reg numbers, and BLM mustangs also receive white brands on their necks.


4. A nylon halter would not break off. And again, a halter has nothing to do with a "rope around his neck": comparing a halter to a rope around the neck makes about as much sense as comparing a knee brace to diving flippers.
The hardware will break on a nylon. I've had several break, it's always the rings and clips, sometimes the stitching on an old worn one. So to say a nylon will never break is wrong. Many people who turn out in halters will turn out in leather halters anyway.

jclarkdawe
08-28-2017, 05:37 AM
Have never heard of the log, that doesn't sound like it would work at all. I have heard of people tying weanlings and yearlings to a mule or donkey and letting them live together for a few weeks. Horse learns quickly that the mule isn't going to tolerate any funny business and is going to drag that baby around whether it wants to go or not.

The rope would be used very early on to teach the horse to give to restraint. The horse can fight the log all day long and you know who's going to win the fight.

The "team" approach to training is still used today. I know many people into pulling who hitch a young horse to an experienced horse side-by-side. The experienced horse will teach the youngster quickly what to do. I had a horse that was great for teaching other horses how to pony. At the first sign of crap from the horse being ponied, his ears would go back and he'd do the sideways glare at the offender. Second time and he'd let fly with his right rear foot. Never had a horse go for a third time.

You can tie off an inexperienced grown horse to another horse who's been trained and do the same thing as with the youngsters.

These don't teach higher skills to the horse. But it teaches them the basic of giving to pressure. The idea is to get rid of the horse's desire to pull. When the horse discovers that pulling doesn't work, it will change tactics.

I'm not expecting to produce polished horses with these techniques. What you're looking for is a working horse that won't give you too much crap.

Jim Clark-Dawe

AW Admin
08-28-2017, 05:53 AM
3. Feral/wild horses in America are ALL descended from domestic horses that were released or escaped. Obviously it is very possible for a domestic horse to survive. Horses are herd animals and a domestic horse would quite easily go along with a herd.

Living on the range, even a BLM mustang range, is very very different from being a pastured and/or stalled pet. Wild horses are prey. Animals kill and eat them. It gets cold. Water sources freeze. Herd behavior (and status within the herd) is often tied to violence. Stupid horses die. Horses the other horses don't like aren't allowed in the herd; the boss mare can be tough. There's no man-made shelter on the range for the mustangs. And there are hazards; horses die a lot from accidents, and parasites, and cold, and because their feet and teeth aren't up to the task of grazing under rough conditions. (There's a reason Mustangs are known for good feet; the poorly hoofed ones die and don't breed).



4. I have never seen a horse with a visible brand! And I grew up around horses, in a very horsey world. I can't imagine anything tackier (or more likely to draw scorn and criticism) than a visibly branded horse! The only "brands" I have ever seen have been on Thoroughbred ex-races horses: they are tattooed inside their lip. I'm not saying there aren't ignorant idiots (probably out West) who do this, but they aren't the norm, and the majority of American horses are not branded.
There are a lot of horses with visible brands in the U.S. All kinds of horses. I have personally seen and groomed a Percheron with a brand, a Mustang with a brand, and an Arab Bashkir cross with a brand. I've even seen people recognize the brand of a particular breeder.

There are registered brands that have been used for generations.

These are modern "freeze brands" made with nitrogen; they are all registered brands.

Brands are routinely used as ways of identifying a horse; there are standard places for entering brands on breed papers, and on things like Coggins forms (https://www.globalvetlink.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/CogginsFieldForm.pdf).

This is Banjo; he's a Mustang. He has a freeze brand on his neck.

http://www.digitalmedievalist.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Banjo_01.jpg

You can see the actual brand better in this image (http://www.digitalmedievalist.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/banjo_02.jpg).

AW Admin
08-28-2017, 05:59 AM
Just as a note; the BLM horses, and the Chincoteague and Assateague horses have had specific stallions introduced into the herds, deliberately.

And they've also been encouraged to type; see for instance the Kiger mustang (http://kigerhorse.org/) markings.

Beanie5
08-28-2017, 07:27 AM
There is a movie about a famous pony express rider who rode in long distance races and went to africa and won riding a mustang against the best arabs in the world
( both horse and bedouin riders ) I am sure you would find it useful, found it

hidalgo

I noticed a depth of knowledge on this thread about horses i know both a lot and very little about horses
I was wondering if any one might be interested in eyeballing a few pages about hosres/riders and see if you can spot any glaring stuff I was hoping to some extent to appeal to the younger horse riding element?

jclarkdawe
08-28-2017, 09:47 PM
There is a movie about a famous pony express rider who rode in long distance races and went to africa and won riding a mustang against the best arabs in the world
( both horse and bedouin riders ) I am sure you would find it useful, found it

hidalgo

I noticed a depth of knowledge on this thread about horses i know both a lot and very little about horses
I was wondering if any one might be interested in eyeballing a few pages about hosres/riders and see if you can spot any glaring stuff I was hoping to some extent to appeal to the younger horse riding element?

HIDALGO has some inaccuracies and the source material is questionable. In other words, Frank Hopkins may have been telling some tall tales in his story.

Post your section in the Share Your Work section of AW and ask some of the people here to look at it via a PM.

Jim Clark-Dawe

Beanie5
08-29-2017, 04:37 AM
Thanks JCD

M.C.Statz
09-04-2017, 03:46 AM
This thread has turned into a wonderful wealth of horse knowledge!

M.C.Statz
09-04-2017, 04:00 AM
You need to decide what kind of tack is being used. A PP mentioned a "saddlehorn", but those are only found on Western saddles. You could have Western saddles in the American West, or another part of America, but probably not in Europe (I'm American and have been living in Europe for a decade, and have yet to see a Western saddle here, which is fine by me). A Western rider holds the reins in one hand, and (ideally) guides the horse with reign-on-neck signals and heels, though--because of the saddle horn and big saddle--many inexperienced riders are given Western-trained horses and tack so the can hang onto the saddle horn and pretend they know how to ride a horse. This usually results in sawing on the horse's mouth (resulting in a "hard" mouthed horse).



Funnily enough, I just returned from my grandma's ranch on vacation. It's in Western Washington State, and she's a little old lady born and raised in Scotland. She's down to two horses now, one of which is a 3 year mustang philly. The mustang seemed to like me, so I asked to ride it. Grandma isn't so great at giving instructions ("It's kind of like driving a car, it's second nature and you don't know how to explain it"). So we saddle up the horses, she gets on her horse and I mount the mustang. The mustang seemed to pretty much ignore me, and it followed the other horse.

I wasn't really sure how to the balance in the saddle. I wanted to hold on, but I had the darn reins occupying my hands. My feet came out of the stirrups a couple times until I learned to put more weight in them, and I started squeezing my thighs together which helped.

And that's when I noticed the saddle was off center. Grandma apparently isn't so great at tightening saddles. I tried to lean the other way, which I think made the horse want to turn in that direction. Inertia, centrifugal force and all sorts of physics led to that making the problem much worse very quickly. The saddle (and me) wound up sideways, and I came spilling out. I got to my feet with a very spooked mustang with a saddle strapped to it's belly charging right at me. I wasn't really on my feet enough to dive out of the way, but last second it did a 180 and ran the other way. It continued back and forth, trying to buck off the saddle, stirrups flying off, for at least 90 seconds before it gave up and calmed down.

I was able to take her by the reigns and a passing neighbor helped remove the saddle. She seemed to be fine after that, so we put the saddle back on, cinched up tight this time, and I rode her back.

The next day Grandma saddled her up again. She didn't explain what she was doing, and I was standing near the horse's rear flank. She then tossed a bag of feed right on the saddle, spooking the horse WHILE I WAS STANDING RIGHT NEXT TO IT. I guess I have better reflexes than I thought. She was trying to get her the get used to sudden weight changes and the feeling of objects sliding off. I could have used a damn warning.

AW Admin
09-04-2017, 04:26 AM
The closer you stand, the safer you are, in terms of feet.