Hello! I have recently purchased a three year old mare in Iowa and I have put her into training. I have noticed that when I ask her to lope she seizes up and stops and wont move. She will do this when I dig my spur or just squeeze my calf. She doesn’t do it all the time, just occasionally. I can tell that she has been taught to spur stop because she will stop on a dime if I dig my spurs into her. I realize that teaching a young horse to spur stop too young is bad and they can become worse about it as time goes on, so I have stopped using the spur to stop her. How to I get her out of this bad habit of stopping when I use my spur? (Also, she does not do this at the jog, only at the lope). Thank you!
Why are you digging your spurs in at all?
This doesn’t sound like a spur stop to me (especialy since she’ll do the same thing off your calf), it sounds to me like you’re using too much force or an incorrect aid for the lope so she’s sucking back in response. Try tipping her hip to the inside, then tapping/bumping with your outside spur. Also, be very aware of what you’re doing with your hand, if you’re trying to collect her up to much for the transition, her only option will be to stop.
What happens if you cluck to her? A lot of reiners will lope off if you gently tip the hip inside and cluck to them.
Can you ditch the spurs for the time being and see how that goes? Get her past the spur stop and then put them back on when/if needed.
Cluck to trot/jog, kiss to lope.