Leading a Horse

Question: How easy is it to lead a horse? What if they are bigger horses...such as drafts?

Answer: Think of a horse as a big dog. He’ll follow you. I use the "walk" and "whoa" commands when leading, or a clucking sound for walk. Any horse that won’t stop immediately (not two steps later) gets a "retraining session" with the chain over the nose to get his attention. If you’re in a situation that calls for an immediate stop, a horse that stops two steps later may put you in a situation where you seriously injured.

Again, horses follow you, and you should always walk on their left side, just as you should always mount from that side. If you move left while leading, he’ll follow. If you go right, pull the lead back and to the right. The horse’s head should be beside you, the body behind. For horses who like to crowd you (bump into you while you walk), put a short nail in your fist and let him run into your hand. After being "bitten" once or twice, he’ll quit! It isn’t cruel, really. It’s a very humane way to teach an animal that can crush you into a wall to keep his distance.

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