A SPECIAL POST BY ADIVA MURPHY
Question: I am having a problem with my daughter and her pony. She is only 5 years old and she has a pretty great little pony that she rides and takes lessons on. The problem we have is that the pony (Bambi) has learned that if she pulls on the reins she can rip them out of my daughter’s hands. I got on her and she tried a couple times for me but quickly realized that she couldn’t pull the same thing with me and quit trying. As soon as my daughter got back on her it was the same problem. I told her to be ready for it and hold the reins for dear life but of course she just isn’t strong enough. Can you offer any ideas on what we can try? I am just not too sure where to go next.
Answer: Two suggestions –
ONE; teach the one rein stop as soon as the pony lurches the reins – bend its head – bending is more annoying to the pony = will stop doing it. Also a 5 yr old cannot win the tug o war. So that would help cure the issue – because the pony will respect the little rider…you cannot fix the issue – same as I can make a horse understand new things and train it very well but it will only be as good as its rider…and the respect it has for that rider.