Teach Your Horse To Cross Water Easily

Gailforce — Another old lady rediscovering her inner cowgirl wrote, ” I have finally gotten my horse out on the trails and he’s doing fairly well, but, he won’t cross water.  He hates water.  He doesn’t even want to cross the mud and water that is across the gateway between his pasture and his shelter and manger.

He will leap across a narrow creek or ditch and step around any puddle if he can or bomb full blast across it.  I’ve never tried taking him into an actual river or anything large.  I am trying to get him to relax and slowly go in and just walk through.

Tonight, I spent over an hour at an empty lot with lots of puddles and worked on him going across especially wide ones so he couldn’t easily go around them.  I wore my rubber boots and walked in the shallow puddles and splashed and showed him it was safe.  I had the dog come in and wade around.

It took probably 15 minutes to get him to walk/hop quickly across it.  Then another 10 minutes or so to get him in again and get him to stop in the middle then he leapt out.  Then another 10 minutes to do it again, etc.

I got him in a total of maybe 5 or 6 times.  I worked on him from the ground.  But, although we ended after he stepped in and walked across slowly, I don’t feel he will go in any easier the next time.

Is there some different ideas out there.  How do you go about training a horse to cross water. ”

You can hear the frustration in this poor cowgirl and we will offer a few thoughts. Our next post will offer some suggestions to consider for the horse that is ” afraid of water”. 

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