Monday, September 20, 2010

Bringing up Babies!

It was all about the babes tonight. I played with M first and after some friendly game, went to work on the figure 8. Hmmm... he was rowdy and a bit obnoxious! :-) I just stuck with it until he calmed down and got with me. It didn't take too long. He was calmly walking the figure 8 by the end and I found just a fantastic place to quit. He really needed to play, though! I want to get him out on pasture - he needs to move. He and Reka both need to move. I'm just not a fan of keeping horses locked up and with M and his brain, he's probably struggling to keep himself entertained in that run.

They aren't here long enough for a herd introduction, so I'll put them out on separate pastures and give them a chance to move their feet as much as they need to.

After we played with figure 8, I wanted to build on the sideways game. This part started off good, but then got worse. Hmmm... I tried to pay attention and see if I wasn't being fair or making him feel criticized. I also wondered if I was playing with him farther from the barn - he definitely had druthers toward the barn. Regardless, we stuck with it until he understood and could calmly take sideways steps.

We then did some unwinding, to make sure he can handle the pressure on the poll and the hocks and the claustrophobia. This was all a non-issue for him. He was calm and thinking and it was a good place to quit.

Reka and I worked on yielding to pressure and I played lots with her feet! She'll pick them up for me, but I couldn't hold them just yet. She's concerned about her balance and being trapped, so I'm taking it slow and helping her understand she will survive this. She's a sweet, sweet filly who just wants to be ok. She's learning to better deal with poll pressure, yielding her body to pressure and relaxing on the end of the line. I've been trying to keep her learning sessions shorter and spend more time just being with her, scratching her, helping her find comfort with a human.

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