Already Registered?      Or Please Register to Post a New Message

Login Register

Complete Message (link)

1 year ago

rh comment count

I bought a 3yr old pair of mules this Spring. Told they had been driven on the road in traffic. Saw video of it. Yet I cant even get one of them to cooperate on a lead rope. He panics and throw himself back. Had to drug him with a double dose(dormo) for the farrier and still couldn’t do his rear feet. Managed to get 5 out of 8 feet trimmed today, with sedation!

I am about to give up on this one(the other has potential). No problem tieing him when I am on the other side of the fence but I don’t want to be standing next to him. Tried separating them and working with them individually but that seemed to make things worse. They are not aggressive, just panic.

I have have owned and worked with mules and horses in the past. Using them for firewood mostly.

Not sure what to do at this point.

NoraWI says 2017-10-29 07:12:57 (CST)

Sorry but it sounds as though you were duped and shown video of other trained mules then switched to these. If possible, I would confront the seller. If not possible, I would send these two to a trainer if you are not in a training mood. The last alternative is to sell them as untrained and take your loss. It happens. You should have insisted on seeing the critters worked and then done it yourself to be sure.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Klaus Karbaumer says 2017-10-29 11:14:27 (CST)

Either spend a lot of time, possibly years, training them or sell them!
Are you sure the video showed you the same animals?

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Dan in Illinois says 2017-10-29 18:44:29 (CST)

Might hook him with a quiet one and work him till he is tired. Not trying to tell you your business but if you feed them like race horse they act like one.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

vince mautino says 2017-10-29 22:04:56 (CST)

A 3 yr old mule is green broke at best. From your description I'd say any training was abusive. Mules don't get that way about their feet with proper training.

Mules are completely different form horses. Someone that knows horses needs to educate themselves about mules. I'm not so sure you can turn these mules around, but you need to put them in a pen, each separately and let them get settled in and see if you can get them to trust you. Probably looking at 6 months or more. First get them to let you touch them, lead and ground drive them like they don't know anything and start from ground zero

You go to hooking them up to something now and you darn better be sure it's heavy enough they can't run away with it because they will sure try.

Where did you buy these mules? Auction, trader, private seller .
I would also suspect drugs

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

James says 2017-10-30 08:25:45 (CST)

The previous owner had them less than a year, and he was scared of one of them. They were inexpensive and i knew i was taking a chance. The owner was so nervous I thought he might be the problem.
The two are very attached. I tried separating them for a month and made no progress with that. They were very resentful. One of them kicking the fence where my wife stood while she was feeding them. She wouldn’t let him eat until he reached out and touched her hand.

As far as the feet go the prior owner used a rope to hold the rear feet up. He must have hobbled him as I couldn’t hold his foot by hand with a rope.
They are fine and dandy as yard ornaments but if I cant lead him from pasture to barn it makes it hard to make progress. They are going down hill now so I may have been to easy on them. Time to get serious with them or sell.
They have been for sale since the week after i bought them. 6 months and no takers, but I am honest about them.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

CIW says 2017-10-30 08:55:23 (CST)

Many times I've been down a road similar to the one you are on now. If you would like to speak about how I was able to help the mules over come the point that you are at. E-mail me at I would like to speak with you about it.
I didn't do anything to the animals that would be considered unjust. It's that it's a very long process, and there is a lot more detail to speak about than I can type over the forum.
I hope all works out for you.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Dan in Illinois says 2017-10-30 09:38:39 (CST)

I can send you a video of my 3 year old mules going down the road and they look pretty and broke but that would be deceiving. You can hook some pretty salty critters to a wagon with 4 wheel brakes. A lot of sweat to break them yours and theirs. Good luck!!

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

K.C. Fox says 2017-10-30 10:11:56 (CST)

I would separate them in a dry lot. the distance of separation could be out of sight or miles so that they couldn't hear the other . So they had to depend on me for feed and water. 3year old mules are only green broke at the best. It might help to put a broke horse in with each of the mules. they seem to bond with horses. your other option is to sell unbroken mules spoiled mules. Nothing is going to happen quickly. it will take time to train them. some problems are not solved easily. 6 months to 1 year at the best. The owner knew something was wrong. I would not have bought them without seeing them drove by the previous owner, or I would have figured that they were spoiled untrained and for free something that I didn't want. You will have to start out as if they didn't know anything. Good luck with what ever you decide to do.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

K.C. Fox says 2017-10-30 10:25:20 (CST)

I had a team of Belgium mules. one was a run away could only be worked with a running W. The other was hard to trim his feet; the ferrier that had trimmed their feet before I got them couldn't trim his feet-- either pawed at and kicked at him, he said that they were not that way before, so I don't know what happened to them. used them to feed cows one winter and they didn't get any better. So I sold then as spoiled mules told the new owner what they did and asked if he was sure he wanted them he said yes. Because otherwise they were going to Mexico they were dangerous to try to use or be around.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Scott S says 2017-10-31 19:51:02 (CST)

You bought young and very green broke team of mules. Three year olds can not be expected to be much more as stated in earlier post. Most young horses and mules will test their new owners to see who is boss. If you do not have the time, knowledge and time, you need to take them to somebody who does or sell them. At least if you take them to a trainer they could give you a professional opinion if they are worth salvaging. If you bought them cheap enough paying for some training may well be worth it.

1 year ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

forum rules icon

Forum rules
Read these first

forum monitor icon

Uncle Joe
Forum Moderator

Search forum
Search the forum ARCHIVE

Banner Ads

Available on-line
Rural Heritage
The February | March 19
edition of Rural Heritage
is now available at
Tractor Supply Stores
throughout the US.
Check out a preview in our Reading Room.

calendar icon
Rural Heritage
Calendar of Events
Home of the webs most
extensive Draft Horse, Mule &
Oxen Calendar of Events.


Showcases the
usefullness of this
endangered breed.

Visit RFD–TV for the
Rural Heritage scheduled
times in your viewing area.
  • Copyright © 1997 − 2019 Rural Heritage
    Rural Heritage  |  PO Box 2067  |  Cedar Rapids, IA 52406
    Telephone (319) 362-3027

    This file last modified: Aug 13, 2018.

    Designed by