Using Strategy When Teaching Your Horse To Lie Down

I have decided to give instructions on laying a horse down. Sometimes I am reluctant to talk about or teach things like this because it is not just for any person or horse. Only certain horses would qualify to be trained to lay down and only certain handlers qualify to do it. The horse you choose should not be a nervous type or unfamiliar with his handler.

It helps if your horse has some hobble experience beforehand but not completely necessary however are asking a horse to be submissive and lay down.

An enclosed round pen is the best place to put your horse to make him feel safe. Deep sand or dirt is necessary. Maybe a spot where they lie to roll after a ride. It is important to have very cushy ground!

The first piece of equipment would be a snug fitting halter that won’t twist or turn and a surcingle strong enough to tie the left front foot to. This should be done in a normal position with a thick leather strap so as not to burn or injure the horse.

You need a rope of twenty feet or so to connect the right side of the surcingle then running through the halter back to the surcingle so that when you pull the horse’s head around to the right he will be off-balance with not much support.

You cannot rush this process so you need to wait and watch as your horse decides what to do. After only a few minutes or less your horse will either want to go forward or lay down. For some people and horses this may be not too hard. However I know most people don’t have the experience or knowledge to do this correctly.

In the old days this was a common form of submission to ensure a horse is safe. I learned this technique from a book when I was a kid and it worked very well. I took a 3 year old filly and in five days she would lay down anywhere. I took her on a Crown Royal whiskey commercial and recreated a foaling sequence. All I did was pick up her left foot and pull the halter rope around to the right behind her front legs and waited. In about 15 seconds she laid down and stayed there until we were done shooting. The Humane Society was there and could not believe how good my filly was.