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What to look for in a trainer -Rocky under saddle-
I know a great trainer just down the road from me! [Wink]

If I was looking for a trainer, I'd prefer one close so I could check on my horse too. It would also be great if the trainer would work with you and Rocky together rather than after 30 days hand you the lead and say he's trained.

Experience is something else I'd sure look at as well. There are a lot wannabes that may have managed to get a saddle & bridle on a horse without mishap and pronounced the horse trained and themselves a trainer but I'd want to see horses they've trained and references.

Someone who explains what they're doing & why they're doing it is a benefit as well. If you understand what is being taught and why, it makes a lot more sense and tends to stick better.

It sounds like there are at least a couple of good recommendations so hopefully we'll be seeing Rocky Training Updates soon!
Karen ~ Trails  
Joe Paint Gelding
Paoli, IN

"My treasures do not sparkle or glitter, they shine in the sun and neigh in the night."
[Image: th_horse-galloping.gif]  

Originally posted by ILoveJoe

Thanks for all the advice.


The person farthest away is the one I like the most so far. I called her and she called me back within a 1/2 hour. Her methodology includes Parelli, Clinton Anderson, Julie Goodnight, Craig Cameron, Richard Winters, and Gawani Pony Boy. Very similar to my mind set, I pick and choose among the trainers and get a little here and a little there.

She invited me to her facility and wants to come meet Rocky and see me work with him so she can use the same cues or commands I do.

She is going to the Rolex and offered to stop and meet me and Rocky on the 25th. She is also attending a Richard Winters clinic in my area the following weekend and could pick Rocky up afterwards.

I don't have a truck and trailer yet so I can't haul him for day training.

I'll PM Mrs Parrot and see who she used.

I say to go with your gut feeling. If you're having some doubts now...they'll only get bigger. Me, I like the sounds of the one above that YOU seem to like....and she seems willing to work with you.
Just my thoughts. [Smile]

It's not the years in your life that count, it's the life in your years.
Karen-Anchorage, Alaska
Although each situation is different, I would not be too crazy about the idea of having someone come to my home to break a horse to ride. There are a lot of reasons for this, one being that most people just don't have the facilities needed for optimum safety and success in training. I sure don't!

Having someone come to ride their horses worked for the Hooks because they have their own indoor arena, and therefore were not at the mercy of the weather. Also, it is pretty evident that Mrs. Hook has had a lot of training experience, herself.

Most of us, though, have neither the facilities, nor the experience. It is hard to work consistently with a young horse when you don't have an indoor arena, or at least an outdoor arena with all-weather footing.

IMO, a good trainer could take Rocky and put more training on him in a month, than someone else, only able to ride when the ground is solid, would be able to do in a year.

As long as the distance thing is not impossible to handle, it shouldn't be the deciding factor. I've driven 2 hours each way, twice a week, to ride horses I've had in training. It is worth spending the time, to have a good, safe horse to ride.


EZ brings up a good point. I don't have an indoor arena, nor an outdoor one, just my dry lots.

The neighbor has an open field that they disced over, and in inclement weather she won't use it. So Rocky could go there and never get ridden if it is raining everyday like it is this month.

No call back yet from the other trainer Dunhorsechic mentioned. [V]

This will be the first time Joe and Rocky will have been separated since Aug of '06.

I also have a call in to my vet to do shots, coggins and health papers...I wonder if there are specific vaccinations Rocky would need to go to Ohio (just in case).

Originally posted by hoopski

Originally posted by EZ2SPOT

Another thing to keep in want the horse trained so YOU can ride him, not just to the point where maybe only the trainer can.

Candace -
Why send Rocky off to a remote trainer? Wouldn't it be so much better to have the trainer, Rocky and yourself together? Then you could keep an eye on the process and learn as well. If a trainer can't be found that would come to you, could you find a situation where you could trailer Rocky to him for day lessons where you both learn? Even if it is only one lesson a week with homework between lessons, your relationship with Rocky will benefit too.

I agree wholeheartedly. This is what I chose to do when I bought my two year old, who just turned four. I believe the training is as much for you as it is for the horse. You learn together.

I am not a super experienced equestrian, but I've learned enough over the years to do basic training. I started her under saddle last spring and continue to do ground work with her all the time. Now, she needs miles and more work under saddle. I admit that things were easier for me because my horse was a "clean slate" and hadn't developed any problems I needed to correct. She came straight from the breeder to me -- no other owners.

I am still at the early stages of her training (I know, she could be further along, but I chose not to push her at her age). She and I are going to one of Tom Curtin's Horsemanship clinics in June. I feel much better about training her slowly with this method than sending her off to a trainer for 30-90 days while I have no idea what's happening, how much she is trained (too much or too little) each day, general treatment, etc.
Originally posted by EZ2SPOT

Although each situation is different, I would not be too crazy about the idea of having someone come to my home to break a horse to ride.

I don't know, but I think there might be a potential insurance issue for you if the trainer was hurt on your property as well, even if they have their own insurance for their training business.
I'm so busy, I'm not sure if I found a rope or lost my horse.
Reading this thread with great interest;

gal coming today to eval my fjord; hopefully having a fjord evaluation this summer (they eval against breed standards). Gal comes highly recommended from a fjord breeder I know. Charges $35 to check him out, tell me what he needs, then we'll decide options, would show him for a fee. She's classically dresage trained but can do anything to my understanding. Her mom and gramma having health issues which are falling on her....hmmmm. Another guy advertises, has youtube videos, does clinics here and in the south, farther away but will train for trail....decisions.

Last year same goal (eval cancelled) plus wanted him trail safe; my "30 days and we'll see" turned into 5 months, great with the trainer, not so much with me after (rider issue) but due to weather/rain, maybe got 3 of 5 months saddle time ; didn't get to the trail part. Trainer got pregnant......[:O] I really did like how he looked with HER, but I couldn't get that out of him. 45 minute drive, went up 3-4 days/wk but often missed her, watched when I could, never got that weekly lesson as part of the package though. She said he was harder to come around then some...I have to agree with that.

I like what EZ should be trained so YOU can ride him! Will be my mantra....

ILJ, Rocky is a really nice looking horse. I think you do need a meeting of the minds, trainer who takes it as a daily job , set hours, welcomes you to be there, likes to teach you too. 30 days was nothing for my fjord...but that is him. Guess depends on the horse's personality, your starting place, and your finish goals. Think it's kind of a crap shoot.

ILJ, good luck! Be interested in what you decide and how it goes!

RE: Insurance on your property: I checked into that when getting an umbrella policy; my company said they did not cover trainer if accident on my property; would expect trainer would carry their own. Not sure if that is the insurance standard... I'm going to ask this gal if she carries insurance.

ILJ, I'm sure you are considering everything, and will make the right decision when the time comes. So many horses out there on the market are spoiled and unsafe to ride...and I'm seeing more and more horses that were never broke to ride at all, because the owner was going to do it "someday" and never got around to it. Or the owner DID try, but made a total mess of it. I'm a firm believer that having a good trainer put a strong foundation on a horse, is the way to go.

Fractured, Jake sounds so much like Warsong. I sent her off for training as a 3-year-old, and, initially, she did well. Then she became bored, I think, and started devising little games to play to make things more interesting. The first time I rode her, she tried to get me off by banging me into the arena wall. She was there for 2 months, and at the end of that time, Ed told me she was a very difficult horse to train, and that maybe letting her mature a year or so, would help. I kept her at home for 8 months, & then sent her to another trainer (the one Parrothead used), for trail training. THEY had her for 3 months, and at the end of that time, she was a fairly good trail horse, but still hyper and wanting to do everything as fast as she could. They told me they'd taken her as far as they felt they could. All that remained was for me to take her home & try to get up the courage to ride her, which took me several weeks! It has been a huge challenge. I love her dearly, but she is NOT an easy horse to train or to ride. Her professional training totaled 5 months, before I felt like I could handle her.

Then there was Butterbrickle...she went to the same trainer who started Warsong. I was able to ride HER on his trails before she'd even been there 3 weeks! While she sure does like to have her own way, she has not been as difficult as Warsong. Her total time at the trainers was a little over 2 months. Big difference between these two, huh?

There are so many variables...and there's nothing easy about making these decisions!

I think insurance could be an issue.

The girl in Ohio has a liability form she is bringing next Saturday.

It was a bit frustrating at work on Friday when I mentioned to a co-worker that I was sending Rocky to a trainer. She immediately started telling me what to do, instead of sending him off. I have already done all of the things, it is just time for someone to get on his back...someone ELSE. [Wink]

Down here everyone (well almost everyone) does their own feet trimming, breaking and alot of their own vet work, that some people don't understand why I don't just jump up on Rocky myself, and that MY way is not necessarily THEIR way, but is the right way for me and my horses. And IMO so many of the people are too rough on their horses, and to so many folks the attitude is 'that is always how we have done it' so for them it isn't wrong.

I also should put this out there so I don't offend anyone, when someone describes methods to me that a trainer they know uses, and I judge them to be too rough or hard on a horse, that is not saying that the folks telling me about these methods are bad mouthing any particular trainer, that is my perception based on the information I received. Also what is rough to me, may not be rough to alot of folks, and in fact there may be something I do that others would thing is rough. I am sure some people may think my horses are neglected because they are out 24/7. [:O] And happily dirty ALL the time.

All of the people I have interviewed are highly respected by their clients etc.

ILJ, do it your way; it is your horse, and you are paying...then you should have some say in it or find the person that goes with your philosophy. I don't think you are closed to certain correction methods, but something to consider as to correction vs. rough. Those things run through my mind with my horse (mostly cause I am not tough enough).

Once home, you have to be able to duplicate the training and correction as needed to get the same response or it can get sour once home, horse gets confused. So...I think finding trainer in line with your own way of thinking is pretty important.

So, is decisions the Ohio Trainer?? Have you been able to see her work?

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