Most people tend to wait til the cria is 3-6 months old to halter train, but I've always had better luck starting much earlier. I like to start at 1-2 weeks of age, and always go slow. Crias that young don't have much of an attention span, but they're usually very willing and absorb training like a little sponge!
|Autumn Hill's Trillium, Catastrophie, and Inali, with Inali's dam, Alder Crest April Showers, in the background. All 3 crias were halter and performance trained at an early age, and Inali went on to be a Performance Champion in 4-H.|
|Autumn Hill's Karakoram wearing her halter for the first time. 1 week of age.|
|SHAG Cattera and her 3 month old son Autumn Hill's Catallegre walking around the front yard.|
|Little May Flowers sporting a bandanna (training for a later costume). 2 months of age.|
|Autumn Hill's Charity expertly standing to have her picture taken. 1 month of age.|
Once the cria is walking well on lead and responding as an adult would, there's no reason you can't start with more advanced training. I have obstacle trained crias as early as 2 weeks of age! A well behaved, halter-trained cria is going to be safer if you take them off the farm for any reason- I've safely taken 2 week old crias to shows and to other farms (to rebreed their moms). Crias put up much less of a fight when they are trained at a younger age, and typically become better behaved adults.