Horses - Behavior Issues, Breaking and Training/Kicking horse


Hi my name is Kaitlyn Evans. I am looking everywhere I can for help. I bought an amazing hunter/jumper in the fall and he started kicking in his stall basically immediately when he arrived from Las Vegas. I live in Indiana so he has gone through a big climate change. We knew we needed to do something about it right away so we put a kick chain on him because we did not know what else to do in that short amount of time. At one point he even kicked a hole completely through the stall wall and I had to spend the money to repair it. We turned him out as much as we could but we were afraid to keep him out too long because he had zero winter hair and it was in the teens and negatives for a month and was snowing with no shelter in the pasture. I lunged him all I could although he refused to canter on the lounge line so he just trotted around when I did that and never really acted like he had built up energy. He is on a low carb diet and I have tried just about everything: toys, licks, chains, trying different stall locations, chiropractic, dentist, turnout, lunging, riding if it is decent weather, and I even bought a QuickKick system that detects when he kicks and sprays a little stream of water to reprimand him and it worked really well until he body slammed one of the sensors and broke it. Our barn family moved to a new barn down the rode back to where my trainer lives instead of her leasing the facility we were at, this happened just 2 days ago. He moved from a 12x12 stall with minimal turnout and regular lounging to a 12x20 run out stall into a dry lot fully equipped with safe fencing, rubber mats on the stall walls, jolly balls, slow feeding hay net, mirror, soccer ball, EVERYTHING! Well this morning he was just standing in his dry lot and decided to kick both hinds through the two boards of the fence and get hung up. He is currently scraped up and very swollen. Please help, my trainer/barn owner is getting frustrated and so am I.

PS, sometimes he even kicks under saddle when I asked him to do something he doesn't want to do

Sorry it took so long to see this.

Not much fun dealing with horse that does this.  And hard on wood, and darn sure hard on horse too.

What exactly is he eating, feed and hay?  It could be, even with low carb diet he is reacting to this, and did the people you got him from tell you he did this there?

And has his sheath been cleaned recently?  Could be that is bothering him, not highly likely but still could be?

Would also be curious about something going on internally as well, which an ultrasound might give insight into, do not know how much those run in your area, but they can be invaluable help.

What horses are beside him when he is doing this?  Any or none?  It could be he is proud cut, and acting up, if he is reacting to other horses near him too.

Testing for testosterone levels would help with that, and would know what dealing with.

I've seen horses do this when didn't like who stalled next to.  And have seen them do this no matter what horse or no horses as well.

You said you used kicking chains with no luck, were they just around pasterns, or more like kicking hammers?  And is he doing this period, or more so at feeding time?  

Horses - Behavior Issues, Breaking and Training

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Melanie Rowley


Questions relating to first time, or inexperienced horse owners. Other questions as needed. Questions on American Saddlebreds. Old fashioned training advice, riding advice for beginners, and general care questions. Behavior problems, with emphasis on thinking through aspects of problems that might not seem an issue at first.


About to turn 55. My father was a Saddlebred trainer, and I grew up around horses. I have also worked as a Master Saddlebred Show Horse Groom, working with Dale Pugh, Art Simmons, Sonny Sutton, and others. I also have worked with Quarter Horses, and Thoroughbreds on a mare and foal operation in Alabama. I have owned for years, and currently have two teenaged geldings. I also for many years have taught riding lessons, to adults and children, working with beginners just learning, and older adults who have lost their confidence, or wanted to get "back in the saddle." I was lucky to be around many of the best horsemen in MO, and AL and learn from them, and strive always to think through a situation and work to keep riders and horses safe. Those also include the many talented grooms, and farriers I met along the way.

Some college. General studies towards a nursing degree, which derailed due to divorce. Horse skills learned through over 50 years of watching, learning, doing and absorbing as I grew.

©2017 All rights reserved.