Just because a foal is a baby doesn’t mean you can’t get started on their training to turn them into the best racer they can be one day. They will learn a lot from their mother out in the pastures, as well as the other grown up horses in the fields. This will largely about how to be a good well-mannered horse.
As the trainer, you need to teach the foal how to interact nicely with humans. A good relationship with humans from day one is the best way to ensure an obedient horse that is a pleasure to work with. The horse will also be a lot less stressed if the progression of training is slow and steady.
1. Start With General Behavior
To begin with, lessons should be gentle and very short. This will prevent stress for both the foal and the mother. Most of your early lessons will be about general behavior and can take place while you’re doing your routine checkups and care for the young animal.
Make sure you focus on stopping bad behavior before it becomes a habit. Don’t allow any nipping, biting or kicking from the foal. It might be cute and not harmful early on, but it can be highly problematic if the horse gets used to doing it.
2. Get A Foal Halter
You get small halters that are suitable for foals. Using one of these early on can help to get your foal used to tackle being put on it. Some horses can get panicky about having something tied to it, so the earlier you start the less chance there is of that happening.
Use the small halter to train the foal to walk nicely next to you. This can then expand into lunging and other activities as it gets older and ready for such exercises. Just be sure to not leave the halter on the horse when you aren’t around. Foals have a tendency to get stuck or hook these halters onto things you wouldn’t think they could.
3. Incorporate Structured Lessons
Once a foal becomes a yearling, it’s possible to start with some structured lessons for their training. Just be sure that you know your horse’s stock and breeding before you get too far into the lessons and monitor their progress closely. Some horses are not meant for a strenuous program until the age of three, but good racing stock should be.
Remember to start off slowly, just like when you look for racing tips online and increase your sessions in an incremental way. Any big changes will likely be a shock to the horse’s system and could be damaging to them and their progress. It’s important to focus on preparation lessons before you start them with a saddle to get them fit and strong.
Once they are ready for a saddle, it’s still important to make sure that you progress at a pace that suits the horse. They need to be fit enough to handle the extra weight of a saddle and then of a rider.