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mysticalmeadows
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PostSubject: some advice on my baby colt please   some advice on my baby colt please Icon_minitimeTue Mar 01, 2011 10:39 am

my lil man is 10days off 2 months old, and he is forever biting, even when u walk up to him he starts chomping his gums, is this normal??? he bit one of my girls on the bum today, and just always trying to bite. how do i stop it???
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deltree
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PostSubject: Re: some advice on my baby colt please   some advice on my baby colt please Icon_minitimeTue Mar 01, 2011 11:43 am

I've not yet dealt with such a young biter, but Jessie attempted to bite me a total of three times when he first came. The last time he tried, I pinched his nose so hard he hasn't tried it again Laughing An older mare wouldn't let him get away with it even once, why should I? I've found pinching is also affective because it replicates a real horse "bite" without whacking them which can lead to them being head shy... that's just how I do it, though! Would be good to hear it from someone who has had to break the habit in a younger horse, as Jessie is over a year old now...
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PONYKID
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PostSubject: Re: some advice on my baby colt please   some advice on my baby colt please Icon_minitimeTue Mar 01, 2011 2:52 pm

Is he actually biting or gnashing??

When they chomp their gums in the air, that is a sign of submission, that they accept you as their senior. They do it to other horses and some babies do it to humans too.

But if you say he bit your girl, then that sounds more like misbehaviour! First thing, DON'T let him know you're scared of him. Once he learns he has got it over you and your girls by threatening to bite, he will have the habit for life. Secondly, don't be afraid to discipline him when he does it. If he did it to another older horse, they would do it back and teach him it's unacceptable. So as soon as he does it, give him a quick smack on the neck or shoulder with a firm "NO!". Don't knock him around the head, he will only become head shy. After a few tries he should only need the "No" and no smack.

I would also be looking at where he picked up the habit. Babies take all their cues off their mothers or other horses within their herd. As soon as I run a stallion with a mare and foal, the foal starts wanting to mount other animals! As the old saying goes: monkey see, monkey do! If I have a mare that tends to swing her butt to other mares at feed time and threaten to kick, I find that the foal quickly starts to do this as well to humans and other foals (usually older horses teach them it's unacceptable very quickly!!). So find out where you boy has picked up this habit, and if it's possible, eliminate the culprit that is teaching him naughty behaviour. Some people will say it is just normal colty behaviour, but I believe they have to learn it from somewhere.

Out of interest, when he was a newborn and you started handling him, did you do a lot of mutual grooming? Did you scratch him to gain his trust and let him groom you back with his gums? This is the most common way people accidentally teach foals to be biters. It's all innocent fun when they are gummy, but they quickly get teeth and then they get confused because you don't want them to groom you anymore, so they will become nippy.

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BFFmini
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PostSubject: Re: some advice on my baby colt please   some advice on my baby colt please Icon_minitimeTue Mar 01, 2011 11:32 pm

I am a pincher too... I pinch on the lip, neck or shoulder, wherever I can reach really quickly, and HARD! Whatever you decide to do, get on to it quick smart!

My colt is a nipper, he is not so bad now, but it is a hard habit to break, as it is normal coltish behaviour. (although rude and unacceptable)
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PONYKID
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PostSubject: Re: some advice on my baby colt please   some advice on my baby colt please Icon_minitimeWed Mar 02, 2011 2:42 am

IMO, it is not "normal" coltish behaviour. I have raised six colt foals, and only one of them ever tried to nip and that was because his last owner used to scratch him on the neck and encouraged him to be playful (I also bought a yearling filly who had this same nipping habit caused the same way). It was a habit that was hard to break as he had already been doing it for months, but we got there. I smack not pinch because I find I can do it quicker, and whatever you do, it's the response time that matters the most.

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BFFmini
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PostSubject: Re: some advice on my baby colt please   some advice on my baby colt please Icon_minitimeWed Mar 02, 2011 4:15 am

Not normal as in acceptable behaviour but it is not uncommon for a young colt to try and nip, for whatever reason. If he is allowed to get away with it, he will continue.

I agree, it is the response time that matters, not what you do. Slap, pinch, poke, whatever, he needs to know straight away that it is not allowed.

My colt is not as young as yours, he is a two yr old who already had this habit when I bought him. It is a hard habit to break, but he is learning.





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