As with all my tips I will not try to tell you this is the only way to do it, but, these tips have worked best for me when halter breaking a horse. As with most training, it is best to start them young. A yearling is a good place to begin, or if the mother of the colt is gentle, you can begin halter breaking the colt even earlier, keeping the mare nearby. Older horses can be halter broken too; It just takes a little more time and effort.
· It helps if you have spent some time getting them gentle before halter breaking your horse or colt. As a rule of thumb, it is best to start off very slowly getting them used to people first, and then gradually building up to new (to them) experiences. However, if this is not possible, you can always load your horse in a trailer or put him in a small pen to get the halter on him, which is the first step.
· Let him smell the halter and get used to it being around his head. Horses are just like people in a way; They like to have time to become familiar with new things. Once he sees satisfied that the halter is not going to hurt him, slip it on him and attach a lead rope.
· Some trainers will disagree, but I like to let them drag the lead rope for a few hours or even over night, if possible. As long as they are in a pen where they can not get hung up, this is a good way for them to get used to it. Stepping on the end of the lead rope will cause them to realize they now have something on their head that can stop and turn them.
· Once you have the halter on them and they are starting to become used to it, there are a number of ways to establish control over them. If you are in a hurry and want to get the job done, a good way is to snub them up to a horse and rider. I have seen mules used as lead trainers by tying the end of the lead rope to the mule’s tail. This can make for a bit of a rodeo though, so I do not personally recommend it.
· The best way is to just start working with them slowly but surely, pulling and tugging on the lead as they learn to follow you. You can place a looped rope around their hind end to encourage them to move with you if they are being stubborn. To come to the place where they will actually trot after you, this may be necessary. Once you have your horse leading well, you will find you can do a great deal more with him. Now may be a good time to get out a saddle and start him getting used to that if he is big enough.
I hope this will help you with halter breaking your horse. Let me know if I can help you with other tips on horse training.