Mini’s are just like their regular sized ancestors in most all ways. They eat the same things, can be ridden, pull carts, etc…but they do it in a different way because of how small they are. They can still pull their own weight around just as much as a regular sized horse. They also have can have the same attitude and need their feet trimmed and maybe even shod.
So do mini horses kick?
Yes of course minis can and will kick mainly if provoked or spooked. Minis will kick at each other as well or other animals like dogs. Teaching your mini to kick can be a timely task that needs to be done many times over but it is easy. Your horse should never kick at people that is what you need to teach your mini not to do.
Just like with all horses you need to respect them as a mini can cause damage with a kick maybe not as bad of an impact as a regular sized horse but with smaller hooves they can create just as much havoc with penetration.
Getting your young or older horse to kick will take some time there is no one tactic that will work on all horses. The main tactic we use is simply bringing your hand down their back leg slowly if they start to kick just tell them easy. Continue this until they don’t kick giving treats (healthy treats to them). Do this on both sides don’t work that long with them at first you want to get to eventually where you can pick their feet.
If you have a hold of their leg they should not be able to kick you as they have force but can’t generate it without whipping their leg. Kind of like the alligator effect where an alligator has amazing chomping speed and pressure to close their mouths. But grab a hold of their mouth while shut with one hand and they can’t open it. (don’t try this at home lol).
So with that being said if this tactic doesn’t work or you don’t feel comfortable doing this we have gathered other ways to get your mini not to kick or bite even from real mini horse owners. We curated this content from different horse forums and horse websites to bring all the information into one place for you.
We did correct spelling and grammar where needed but other than that the answers remain the same.
How To Get Your Horse To Stop Kicking With Kicking Straps
This is something we have never used but it may be an option for you as a last resort even though we are showing it to you first for other strategies. This is a great read if you are looking to train your horse to drive.
Real Mini Owners:
1. Farina “Not A Good Idea” – At first I think that a properly trained driving hrse shouldn’t need kicking straps.
A definitive pro for kicking straps is, that you can adjust them in different positions so you can give your horse a more balanced look. There is only one position for breeching, and sometimes
horses look very long in their back with breeching. I would never use breeching and kicking strap, that looks like too many leather with too few horse.
In Germany there are ‘short breeching’ that’s a leather that comes in the ring of the breeching strap and go right to the shafts if you would need both. In ‘Eignungspruefungen’ you have to drive
with kicking strap and then I usually drive without breeching (and *with* break).
2. DisneyHorse “Looking Into One For Sure” – Well, judging by my Shetland stallion’s athletic ability to buck quite well in the long lines, he will DEFINITELY be getting a kicking strap
when he gets hooked. Iowa Valley Carriage has them very reasonably priced, and lots of options on them, so that’s where I’ll be ordering mine. However, in the meantime, I have always used a
leadrope or rope. I usually run it through where the hip drops on the breeching run through. Not entirely sure if that’s the spot, but there are slots up there that make it easy.
I don’t think I’d run one as far back as the crupper, that seems uncomfortable and not really where it needs to be.
3. TargetsMom “Even Experienced Drivers Use Them” – I have heard very experienced drivers say they always use a kicking strap and using one should not indicate that the horse is
necessarily a bucker. Just that the driver is being safety conscious. I admit I haven’t added one to my harness yet, but I believe they are positioned quite near the crupper to be effective.
4. MiLo Minis “Won’t Completely Stop A Horse” – The kicking strap is looped around one shaft and then run over the horses butt behind the breeching and in front of the crouper and then
looped around the other shaft. I run it through the buckles on the crouper to keep it in place. It won’t completely stop a horse that is bound and determined to buck and kick but it will keep them
from kicking high enough to get a leg over the shaft which could be disastrous and if you are using one the first time they attempt to buck or kick it may deter them from trying it again.
5. Horse Mom “I love mine” – I love mine. Jay was great driving but whenever we went down a hill he didn’t like the pressure from the cart and would buck. I put the strap on him and he
couldn’t buck. He learned how to use his body correctly to go down the hill without being pushed along by the cart. He doesn’t need the strap anymore for bucking but I like to keep it on for safety.
You never know when the horse might spook. I got mine from Iowa Valley for I think $30 and that included shipping.
Other Ways To Get Your Horse To Stop Kicking
1. Mad For Mini’s “Work Slowly” – I am in no way an experienced trainer but if he were mine I would take things very slowly . Try rubbing his shoulder/hip and slowly move down his leg but
stop and move back up to his shoulder/hip before he gets upset about you going towards his feet. Eventually as he grows more comfortable with your hands on his legs work further down but
never too far to get him upset about it. With time you should be able to get to where you are touching his feet without picking them up. When he is comfortable with that try asking him to pick a
foot up and immediately set it back down without doing anything else to it . As he gets used to that hold the foot up for longer periods of time and eventually try just a quick cleaning . From there
you should be able to get more work done on his feet. Good Luck !
2. Lucky-C-Acres-Minis “Takes Awhile” – We took in an abused mare who did not like being messed with at all and it took a while to get her used to us handling her feet and getting her to
stand calm while the farrier worked on her.. Time and patience is the key.. All I did was talk to her in a calm voice and rub/scratch her body till she got used to that, then I’d work down to her legs,
just rub them till she got used to the touch and then would work on the cue to pick up her feet.. I’ve taught most of ours (babies are still learning) that when I get down to the fetlock and give a
“click” sound they’re to give so their feet can be picked up..
3. Barefoot “Might Be Hurting” – That is frustrating. I trimmed some mini’s a few weeks ago. We got to the last mare and she wouldn’t let me pick up her last back foot. She was cow kicking
really hard. I wasn’t able to trim it. Wondering if she was hurting. With her ,thought it might be her back.
With the natural horsemanship they use a long stick that is friendly. You start real slow rubbing it all over their body. Start with only the parts they are comfortable and use approach and retreat.
May take hours,days,or weeks.
Then for the hoof ,and I have done this with clients, gently start with a rub, then gently tap the foot over and over. Keep tapping until they pick the foot up. As soon as they pick it up quick tapping
IMMEDIATELY end with a rub. Pressure is off when they do as you ask. When they put it back down ask again with a little rub tap, tap, keep on tapping till they pick it up.
Another thing is lots of leg rubs.
Horses feet are their survival and when we immobalize them by picking up their feet they are in danger of being eaten.[IMG]
I am sure the trust with come with your love and kindness.
My pony didn’t trust me for a whole year and she is also slow to forgive. I think she always will. But now she trusts and looks to me as her leader. Such a good feeling.
Take care, don’t get kicked. hehe
Minis are just like any other horse with different temperaments. Some won’t kick at all and other will be prone to kick you just need to work with most of them and be around them. Show them respect and groom them.
Work slowly with them as it does take time. Breaking a horse from kicking is very important as they are going to need to get their feet trimmed and picked on a regular basis or they will have feet problems.