Fear of Men

May 14, 2013

On Saturday I asked Rich to assist me with Linus. Since I ride in a large open field, I wanted someone present for our first ride after his mouth was worked on. He should be able to truly focus and we should be able to get some real mounted training accomplished. But we quickly realized that Linus is afraid of men.

To date the only men that have tried to handle Linus have been the ferrier and the vet. Linus melted down for both, but we assumed it had something to do with the ferrier smelling of burning hoof and the vet smelling like a vet. Turns out this may only be a portion of the problem.

Generally Linus trots up to me when I enter the field, and all but shoves his nose into his halter. He wuffles my hair, and lays his head on my shoulder, thriving on attention. But when Rich entered the gate into the field, Linus began snorting and keeping a good distance while dancing around, never letting his eye leave Rich. It took a few minutes for me to get a halter on Linus and bring him up, but whenever Rich approached Linus became utterly terrified.

Rich being the champ he is, spent nearly an hour socializing with Linus. He walked him all over the barnyard and held his feed bucket for him at feed time. By the end Linus was walking on a lead nicely, although a little behind Rich.

Needless to say, we did not attempt riding.

Rich enjoyed working with Linus, and has offered to continue it until Linus is comfortable with him. He said it was rewarding to see Linus improve and he likes Linus’s personality, just not his name.

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