November 11, 2020 – Ask Monty Newsletter

Question: How do I stop my pony from moving when I try to mount?

How do I stop my pony from moving when I try to mount? My family’s pony Dusty rarely stands still when I go to mount. He also doesn’t like being tacked up. When he sees the tack, he walks off to the other side of the yard, because he knows being tacked up means ‘work’. I do manage to tack him up and then the biggest problem is mounting, because then he either steps sideways or walks forward so that I can’t mount. When we first got him (nearly 2 years ago) he was fine, but then it just came on. I would be really struggling to mount, and he would be walking forward like a racehorse. Then a few months ago I decided I’d try and work with him, although I didn’t have any set things I would do. This is what I did though.

I’d attempt to mount (bareback) and when he moved, whether it was forward or sideways, I’d then push him back to the spot where we started. His habit had gotten so bad that whenever someone put their hands on him and at the same time stood on the side you mount from, he would threaten to kick, stomp his hoof, and then usually move sideways. Thankfully he didn’t move to the side I would be standing on, but it was and is a problem. Anyway, my working with him did help a lot, but now he’s gone backwards again. I’m going to try what I did again, but do you have a solution?

Monty’s Answer:

Thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to say to you that I went through the same learning process that I am going to ask you to experience. The first thing you need to do is eliminate is the possibility of a medical issue. Are you using a mounting block or are you perhaps causing him discomfort when you pull yourself up? A horse will avoid painful procedures and if this is the case, I strongly suggest the mounting block.

On my Online Uni there is a video lesson on this very subject. The Mounting Block lesson is something I learned rather recently. I now realize that within 3-4 days I could have your horse coming to the mounting block, moving sideways, and moving for you to get on. He will stand still and take a step back before moving forward. It’s there and you are invited to view the whole process:


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