4Those experienced w/Impressive offspring
Last Post 08 Apr 2006 05:17 PM by Sansena. 26 Replies.
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SansenaUser is Offline
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04 Apr 2006 09:02 PM
    Can anyone share any training hints that have been successful with this apparently 'difficult' bloodline? HYPP/NN of course.

    After 3 yrs of pulling my hair out and trying absolutely EVERYTHING, I've gotten in touch with the owner of my horse's filly. Turns out, SHE too has had similar issues. We're thinking it's the Impressive blood.

    Anyone have words of encouragement? Does it get better with age? Domination? LOTS of routine/ repetition? How do you de-spook such a reactive, sensitive, vigil and alpha-type personality?

    Some days are like putting your head in the lion's mouth...

    Thanks for any and all input.
    silverwolf_woofUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:10 PM
    I have a registered paint mare with Impressive in her bloodline, and she is very easygoing and trainable. This is the first time I have heard about such an issue. Perhaps it has more to do with your horse's specific past experiences in training?
    SansenaUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:16 PM
    You may have a point.

    My horse came to me 2 days before his 4th bday, quiet, sweet, rock solid & confirmed w/t/c w/auto lead changes. He had inconsistent work for a year and in starting back, he's a freak on a leash. Which is how his daughter's owner describes her behaviour too.

    They were both purchased from the same woman, let's call her Ann. That's the only common thread. Ann never admitted to me in having difficulty with my guy, nor did she openly admit to problems with his offspring.

    However, Ann has admitted to the filly's owner that she didnt' 'get along' with my guy. Yet Ann told me she sold him to focus on showing her paints...
    silverwolf_woofUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:25 PM
    I sounds like you have a dominance problem with your horse. Problems on the ground often amplify those in the saddle. I have done many clinics with Doug Mills and Chris Irwin (similiar to natural horsemanship) and I would highly recommend that you consider getting outside help with your horse through an experienced horse trainer. I had problems with a dominant horse of mine years ago and we now have a great relationship.
    908338User is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:28 PM
    I have an Impreesive bred mare and she is very dominant. I am no help, just my two cents. Smirk
    xhavencluxUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:37 PM
    Homer's also impressive bred, and after he hadn't been handeled constinatly for awhile he got a very alpha-horse persona but with a few months of getting after him for his bad behavior he became an angel. Well mostly, he still has his jerk days.

    So perhaps it was the lack of repition, or just his previous training experinces?
    qhallaroundUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:48 PM
    There is nothing wrong with Impressive horses, and IMO no inherent training issues. There are great Impressive horses, there are good, medium, and downright nasty Impressive horses in all meanings of the word.

    Your problems could stem from past experiences, training, etc. And since the two horses you are considering are mother and daughter it could be another genetic factor not related to Impressive, or from the link to Impressive that the mother has (which only indicates the possibility of a link to that one line of Impressives...and he had a lot of foals), or it could be something the mother experienced and then passed on to her foal.

    Anyway, point being, I'm not a fan of putting the blame for training problems on a single bloodline, especially not one that has such nice horses.

    Now what I have noticed (through watching Impressive horses, I boarded at a barn that stud an Impressive stud for awhile and there were a good number of them around) is that Impressives, like many QH are very smart. Impressives also tend to have a strong will, IMO, not a bad thing in principle. What happens IMO is people get frusterated with a smart horse with a strong will that litterally outsmarts them, and then they call the horse "stubbern" or "hard to handle", etc. While others, that understand the personality better, or are more experienced handling that personality get along fine with them and the horses turn out great.

    As for your last questions I don't recommend domination over any horse. You want to establish respect, yes most definitly. But you want respect and trust, not fear from domination that can be seen for a short time as respect.

    Also don't be overly repetative. That will just make just about any horse board and make them want to come up with things to do that aren't your idea. Vary your workouts, locations, etc. No matter the bloodline you'll have a happier more willing horse for it.
    SunsetHaltersUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 09:52 PM
    Both our Paints are Impressive bred. I think it's Katie that's double Impressive bred. Sage is a big dog- totally laid back, was very easy to train, will do anything, go anywhere, and not bat an eye. He's also a real 'thinker'. If he gets stuck in the fence, he'll wait for someone to come get him. He'll also watch to see just how you latched that gate Smirk

    Katie is also laid back and a thinker. She has more spunk, but would definitely not call her high strung. She's very focused on the rider, and willing, they both love to please.

    My Dad also has a double Impressive bred Paint. She's very similar to both our horses. Was a breeze to train, loves people, ect.

    Karen
    luvs2ride1979User is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 10:28 PM
    I have an Impressive grandaughter. She is an AWESOME horse! Yes, she likes to test me and can be spooky, but she's a young mare... That just goes with the territory. She's 7 now and has steadily improved over the last 2 years.

    My biggest advice would be to stop trying so hard! Just have fun with her. And if you can't have fun riding her, don't ride her for a while! Just go out and groom, love on her, talk to her, etc. Make her behave in the simplist of terms (be consisten with your punishment and do NOT let her get away with ANYTHING! Do whatever it takes...).

    Once she'd fine doing those easy things, start taking her out in hand on walks, just the two of you. Stop and let her graze for a while, comfort her, and go on adventures! She needs to learn that you will protect her and she can trust you. Get her trust on the ground, then her respect, then you can go back to working her.

    Just make sure you don't work her to madness... That's where I messed up with my mare. She was bored to tears! As soon as we quit training for a season and just had fun, she turned into another horse! Now I just make sure we have at least 1 fun day a week (trail ride, riding bareback, or fun free lunging in the pasture) and 1 non-riding day a week. As long as we do that, she stays happy and sane.

    Also, to help her get used to noises, tie a few bells in her mane or to her halter (the small ones). They will help override some of the scare noises and warn other critters in the area to scoot before you get there.

    Good luck!

    ~Barbara
    heatherwayUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 10:47 PM
    Arlo had Impressive in his pedigree somehere, but I only know that because he was HYPP N/P. Most of his problems stemmed from his HYPP status.

    He was definitely one of the least spooky horses I've ever encountered. Nothing scared him, even things that possibly should have, and he'd go through anything you pointed him at without batting an eyelash. Not particularly dominant, either.

    The difficulties I had with him usually arose when he got nervous, which would start to trigger his symptoms. It made for difficult training because he was just as dumb as a post, so he was very easily confused. If you confused him, it would make him nervous, and next thing you know, he'd start getting twitchy, eyes rolling, this odd jerky foot-tossing paw, and if you didn't back off right then and there, and start him moving forward, he'd go over. But that was primarily the result of having HYPP, as far as I could tell, and not his personality.
    SansenaUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 10:49 PM
    My horse, Doc, is frighteningly smart. So much so that if you think something, he'll do it before you apply the aids. You're mucking and need him out of the corner? Think "Move please" and he does. Practicing lateral work in hand and need more shoulder movement? Point to it and think how far over you want it moved and he does... Comes in handy if you're focused. Not so much if your'e distracted.

    Otherwise, I've tried 4 saddles, finally bought a new one, had it restuffed 8 months later, had 3 chiro visits now,
    myotherapy, 2 acupuncture, a massage therapist, put him on an EPSM diet, added e/selenium & B vitamins, treated for lyme, bought a cashel soft saddle and had 3 trainers lesson
    with us. Admittedly it's all intermittent because
    money isnt' unlimited. I'm frustrated, to put it
    mildly.

    Domination was thrown out there in my OP as more of a euphamism for trying anything other than what I have already tried.
    qhallaroundUser is Offline
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    04 Apr 2006 11:05 PM
    LOL, I understand the frusteration.

    So there are underlying soundness issues? Or are you just not sure anymore? (I definitly know THAT feeling!...at one point I had probably 5people yelling at me about 5different things that were "definitly" causing my horse's problems. Yup...turns out they were all wrong LOL).

    Good luck Smile
    robison02User is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 12:00 AM
    If your horse was a direct offspring of Impressive, or heavily line-bred, then I'd be more apt to blame it on the bloodline. However, once you get a few generations removed you have to consider that there are a LOT of other bloodlines in there.

    That said, I owned an Impressive/Spanish Array gelding. He was a goofball that didn't really grow up until he was 7. I blame his broncy tendencies more on the Weisamp lines (and I think we only have 2 horses on the farm that don't have those lines-lol) and his defiance on his previous handling and training. Once I figured him out, he was a great little horse and I would give my left arm for another just like him.
    light_horseUser is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 01:09 AM
    After reading your post is isn't clear as to what the horse is doing that is causing the frustration. Your later post indicated you are dealing with, what might be, soreness issues. I put my pony mare on Mare Magic. Someone on the forum suggested it and it helped my mare. I recommended it to a friend and it helped her gelding. It helps to calm them down. Two people at our barn put their horses on Farrier's Formula at the same time and both took them off of it at the same time. The horses were getting wired on it and both had been calm before they started it. So, it could be an additive to your horse's diet that is contributing negatively. Please post more info or direct me to previous posts I may have missed. (I've had to deal with saddles, chiropractors, bad behavior, and lameness so maybe I can throw something out that could be useful.)
    barkerz_horseUser is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 07:51 AM
    Sorry, I just browsed through most of this, but I'd just like to say..... don't blame Impressive, as most everyone else has said. HYPP is something that affects the muscles and stuff, so if a horse just likes to prance around misbehaving and stuff, it is probably not HYPP. Unless you see any signs of it, like the extra yawning, twitching, etc, than I would probably rule that out. You could get your horse tested though, if you want to. But I've never heard of Impressive horses being "bad". Hey, my gelding's got him in his pedigree, and he used to be a champion roper before we bought him. A couple weeks before he came over to my area, apparently he won a jack pot with a few thousand dollars in it!
    comehomesoonUser is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 10:21 AM
    I had an Impressive mare once before I really knew what HYPP was, and needless to say she lost her mind. Yes the disease affects their muscles and things but it also affects triggers in their brain so some issues could be related to her breeding. My mare actually had some sort of neurological problem that went along with hers, she would rear so high she would flip and it didnt matter if anyone was on her or making her do anything, it was like a high for her she would get so strung out and then slipping over released a feel good hormone and she was fine, but its the uncertainty loose cannnon. We did a lot of trainin with her and had multiple vets out and it was all the same. Now I do know that not all Impressive bred horses are bad but in the QH lines I have noticed they tend to be a little "hotter" than others. I know I could get flamed for this but this has just been my experience with that line.
    coyotecreekUser is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 10:52 AM
    When we bred allarounders, I owned a grandaughter of Mr. Impressive and her two foals, her filly being TRIPLE bred Impressive.

    The mare, Abby, was the epitome of good natured, except she would never foal when you watched her. The people who own her now plan to break her out, at 13!

    Her gelding son was sold as a two year old to a women for her 12 year old daughter, the two are doing great, he was the easiest horse you'd ever ridden, athletic and never bucked, tried anything you wanted.

    The filly was my weanling halter futurity baby and had HANDS down the BEST mind Ive seen in a baby, sweet and took everything in that you taught her. She went to some halter people.

    I have seen many Impressive breds, no wait, Ill say HALTER horses who are just nuts, something Id probably tie all day long and mabey into the night too, or do the old cowboy method of burying them in sand Grin They lack manners and brain cells..NOW, just so happens Impressive is in the lineage of alot of halter horses..

    I dont think its the bloodlines, its the handling and the individual horse. Ive been told San Peppy Horses buck, I know a Mr. san Peppy Grandaughter who does not buck, Lena bucks more then this mare does(and Lena has NO Peppy in her!)

    I think alot of bloodlines get the stigma based on what a person sees, I simply dont beleive it, bloodlines may carry certain characteristics, but I have not seen the dumbness and muleness in any impressive bred horse Ive owned.

    Sarah
    SansenaUser is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 10:55 AM
    He's got impressive on his mother's side only. He's 4 generations back. He's got lots of Doc Bar on both sides. On second look, don't think I'd call his pedigree 'In line' breeding with an overdose of Impressive.

    Yes, I'm just not sure anymore. re: soundness issues. As I stated, I"ve been through saddle after saddle. Most recently have tried a Cashel Soft saddle but even THAT seems to make him sore.

    It's part of him being so darned sensitive. However, yesterday's chiro visit was 2 hrs long and he found subluxation from atlas/ axis all the way back to his sacrum. Also, his LF fetlock was adjusted (?)

    My major complaint is the bucking with canter. Honestly, I've given up on canter. So now, in trying to deal with consistent correct travel at w/t, but he's bored and looks for crap to spook at.

    However other days he's calm and sweet. Almost as if he gets out in the arena or field and says to himself "It's just not worth the energy today to be a freak on a leash, looking for imaginary things to spook at".

    So, my issues with this horse, listed roughly in order of priority (IMO)
    Inability to get/ keep true canter U/S or lunging
    Bucking consistently when asked for canter U/S
    Hypervigilance/ spooking at literally nothing some days, others choppers could fly overhead and he wont' care
    Exaggerated response to aids, new stimuli (ie: I put him in his stall one warm evening and had opened the window to get in fresh air. He flung himself around the stall 2x because the open window frightened him)
    Random whole body tension (moreso in cold weather. His muscles are like rocks some days, and I can count on those being bad, super spooky-naughty U/S days)
    Mouthiness when insecure (like, yesterday before he realized the chiro wasn't going to hurt him~ Doc held onto my jacket sleeve and wagged his head for about 10 minutes)
    Kicking at empty air when frightened (no snorting or other traditional signals of fear)
    Resistence to leg on occasion (a simple spank with my hand on is fanny gets him going)

    His daughter, it sounds is much more of a problem. Biting, kicking at the leg, crowding or pushing you in hand, difficulty with repetitive training, rearing, then bucking when asked for canter... etc.

    Again, these guys are both HYPP/ NN

    It just seems odd that the original owner of both these horses neglected to tell us up front of the difficulties she had in working with them. My horse's previous owner has acted suprised when I told her there were behavioural problems... and it was she that suggested chiro & extensive medical work ups.

    I'm just a little tweaked that now, after talking to my horse's daughter's owner that she's facing the same challenges in training. It would have been much easier to deal with mentally to hear from their old owner "Hey, they're a tough nut, but once in steady work you can't ask for a better animal".

    Okay... now I'm just venting.
    951172User is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 02:58 PM
    My last QH gelding was Page Impressive bred. I'll say that he wasn't the smartest one out there, but he was extremely sweet, and was NOT dominent in any way. It may be your approach with your horse. I know that when I got my paint gelding, I had to become alot more assertive with him, instead of passive with my QH. All horses are different (just like people) and you will have to just find what works with that particular horse. You may need to be a lot quieter, assertive, passive, etc. Also, if your horse is young, make sure to get her teeth checked. A couple months ago, my gelding had 2 teeth that hadn't come out, and the pain was causing him to be an absolute butt. But, anyway, keep trying, keep your goal ahead, and when you find what works, stick to it, and don't allow for any mistakes. You'll get there before you know it!!!!!
    allison2346User is Offline
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    05 Apr 2006 04:01 PM
    Bloodlines are only a part of who your horse is. I have two Impressive bred horses; one proud-cut gelding who is 11 years old and a three-year old mare. My son's gelding is a very smart horse. He will watch me fix the fence and as soon as I sit down to take a break, he starts. He will push on the fence post with his hind quarters to loosen the wire, put his head between two wires and stretch upwards, and promptly walk out of the pasture (if he wants to). Once in a box stall, he pushed his way out through the boards. Nothing was kicked or broken, just apart. My trainer could not believe it. He charged her in the round pen and had to be trained strictly in the arena. He is an excellent ride who does not spook at anything out there. Being he is proud cut, he needs to be respected as a stallion. He does have a tendancy to become mouthy and bite (if you let him). Once he knows I mean busines, he is fine. This usually takes a firm look and stance nothing physical. My Two-Eyed-Jack gelding keeps him in line out in the pasture.
    My three-year old mare is very calm at this point. She was a typical yearling and two-year old testing to see how much she could get away with. I am very excited to see how she will react in the saddle. She is only two down from Impressive.
    Consistancy seems to work best with my son's horse. He needs to be ridden on a regular basis. He doesn't have any soreness; however, soreness I do not think is due to bloodlines.
    Both of mine are HYPP Neg.
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