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Part 3: First Handling & Haltering of the Foal
Part 3: First Handling & Haltering of the Foal

Are You Prepared to Turn Your Foal's Curiosity Into TRUST Instead of FEAR?

Dear Foal Owner,

Your first foal is on its way or already here and you haven't a clue what to do once the vet leaves. Most of your horsey friends have told you "it's a breeze" or "nothing to worry about". But is it?

I know from my own experience that there aren't many trainers around that know how to properly start handling and haltering a foal. Reading articles in horse magazines can be helpful but can also be misleading. It's hard to understand HOW to do what the article says and there's rarely any explanation as to WHY you should be doing it.

When I had my first foal and tried to do what I thought the article said to do, I wasn't happy with the results I got. Yes, I got the halter on the foal but I had to use force to do it and the foal wasn't very happy about that. I knew there must be a better way but didn't discover it till I met Bob.

The early stages or foundation of learning are the most important and are the cornerstone to all future training. Whether you choose to keep this foal for your own or sell him you want to make sure he understands how to behave, respect and trust you on the ground.

By following Bob's step-by-step training system you will have your new foal trusting and respecting you in no time. By the third lesson, you and your foal will know how to properly put on and wear a halter; safely and comfortably. Undoubtedly, you have a million questions. I know I did.

Here are just some of the questions.

  • When can I start working with my foal?

  • How often can/should I work with my foal?

  • What do I do first?

  • How do I keep from getting hurt?

  • How do I make sure my foal doesn't get hurt?

  • How do I gain my foal's trust and respect?

  • How soon should I get a halter on my foal?

  • How do I teach my foal to wear a halter?

  • How do I deal with my foal's bad behavior such as biting or kicking?

And the list goes on and on. The DVD "First Handling & Haltering of the Foal" will answer these questions plus those you haven't even thought of yet!

Let's take a quick look at the contents of this DVD.

Bob starts by teaching us what he calls "following pressure". This first lesson is the stepping stone to all subsequent training. Remember your foal must trust and respect you before you can continue. Bob teaches us how to use our hands and body to encourage our foal to stay with us and, most importantly, how to avoid being kicked, bitten or stepped on!

In Lesson Two, Bob's analogy of the shallow and deep end of a swimming pool will assist you, now with your foal, and later with all the horses you ever have the pleasure of working with. Bob explains very clearly how moving your foal into the "deep end" yet being able to quickly go back to the "shallow end", builds confidence, increases trust, and inspires your foal to want to learn more!

You will see how all these exercises come together in Lesson Three as Bob further expands upon this foal's trust. The end result is that the foal learns to quietly accept the halter being put on as well as being taken off.

You will find that your foal quickly learns the exercises in this DVD and enjoys doing them. Consequently, he develops a "want to" attitude. And because you've established the proper foundation of respect and trust, your foal will be willing to try to please you.

It is also important to remember that every time you interact with your foal, you are teaching. So be consistent and correct with your cues!

After watching the "First Handling & Haltering of the Foal" DVD you will:

  • Understand the difference between "following pressure" and "restraining pressure".
  • Know how to discourage your foal from rearing and/or kicking out.
  • Understand the difference between you releasing your foal and your foal leaving you.
  • Learn how to teach your foal to stand quietly.
  • Learn why not to ask too much too soon.
  • Learn the differece between punishment and lack of reward.
  • Know how to teach your foal to be haltered and unhaltered without throwing a fuss.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth millions!

How long will it take to halter my foal?

You'll see in the video lessons that we take our time with this foal. That's because we had no reason to be in a hurry and we didn't want to rush and possibly frighten the foal.

Also, Bob only came once a week to work with this foal and I didn't want to do anything in between that would compromise our video lessons. We wanted to show you the foal's reactions as they actually occurred.

You don't have to spread the lessons out over 3 or 4 weeks. You can do them in 3 or 4 days as long as you are consistent in what you teach and don't try to do too much, too soon.

And you can start when your foal is only a few days old if you want. Just be sure that you don't take advantage of your physical superiority to force the halter on the foal. If you do, you'll be leaving a bad memory with the foal which may make haltering in the future much more difficult.

What about teaching my foal to lead?

In this DVD, although we didn't specifically teach the foal to lead, we did teach the foal the prerequisities of leading. In order to lead, the foal must:

  • have a halter on

  • know how to give to pressure

  • trust you, so he will follow you with pressure from the lead line to the halter

  • respect you, so he won't run into or ahead of you
So, in the lessons leading up to haltering the foal, you have already started the foundation you need to teach him to lead. Since foals want to follow their dam (Mother), even if you didn't have a halter or lead line on the foal, he would most likely follow the dam.

Aside: If you have a colt, this is almost always true but I have found with my fillies, that they are much more independent and wanting to go explore and not so interested in following the dam.

DVD comes with a Bonus Audio

As we do for every teaching DVD we make, Bob and I imagined being in YOUR position as you watch the video lessons for the first time. Our goal: think of every question that you might come up with.

Then we recorded those questions and answers as a AUDIO CD and give it to you free with your order. Other trainers would charge you for this extra information but we are committed to ensuring that you get the most possible benefits from our products.

Another benefit of having the audio CD is that you can listen to it while doing something else like driving to or from work or the barn. Or, if you are lucky enough to have your horses at home, listen while you're mucking out stalls.

Seeing is believing

You can't really understand how to handle your foal properly without both seeing (as in video) and hearing (as in audio) the how and the why about handling and haltering.

You can read articles that tell you to "handle your foal before trying to halter him" but what exactly do they mean by "handle"? And how do you do it safely for both you and the foal? Bob not only shows you in the video lessons but he explains the how and why.

Even if you don't have a foal, the information in this DVD will be valuable to you in working with any horse because when you understand the principles Bob uses, you can apply them to other situations with other horses.

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DVD of Handling & Haltering Foal Part 3: First Handling & Haltering of the Foal
  • Teach your foal to respect and trust you.
  • Teach your foal to stand still.
  • Teach your foal to accept your hands near his head.
  • Teach your foal to accept the halter near his head.
  • Be rewarded with a foal that calmly accepts handling & haltering.

Start your foal yourself.

You will thank Bob and your foal will thank you!

Here's to "Building a Foundation You Can Ride On" with your own foal!

Mary Delton
Mary Delton

EquiHorse Communications, a division of BP Equine, Ltd

Toll Free 877.204.0292
P.O. Box 533
Mendon, NY 14506

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We offer Videos on Weaning Your Foal, Foal Training, Training Your Foal, Foal Training Tips, Foal Training Techniques, Foal Training Videos, Haltering Your Foal, and more.