October 15, 2012

Lunging & Ground Work

Well our weekend proved to be a wet one. I guess the weatherman can't be wrong when there's a 100% chance of rain. The rain kept me from trying turnout much more. Woven Web went out in the mare field for about 40 minutes Friday night with the same issues as before. I'll keep putting her out this week and hopefully get her to the point she can be out all day without being completely tortured by the herd. 

I am also pleased to say she's doing much better on eating her hay. I've continued using the hay net and while there's still a bit mixed into her shavings, it's no where near as bad as it was before. She officially knows the sound of the treat bag opening and took no time in learning the joys of a treat here and there. 

Saturday instead of grooming her in her stall, I decided it was time to see how well she tied. She took it all in stride and just stood there picking on Dakota through his stall door. I think she enjoyed it, he was less than amused. I got a break in the thunder / lightening so I took her to the arena and decided to free lunge her a bit. A few friends have requested video of her but with her being off after Dakota beating her I've had to put it off. She was much better Saturday and so I proceeded with the video. It started raining hard again and lightening soon followed so our lunging session was pretty short.

Since i'm short and she's tall, I decided that she needed to learn 'head down' like Dakota knows and all of my other horses have known in the past. My goal: Either by placing my hand on the poll or saying it, she should lower her head. After applying slight pressure 3-4 times she started getting it and by end of the evening was doing it by my hand just sitting on her neck. Next up is saying 'halter' and having her basically shove her head in her halter. Dakota does the halter thing and I love it - he sees it and just puts his head in so I can easily get it on him!

Sunday shortly after I got to the barn the radio informed us we had severe storms heading our way. Again. So I threw Woven Web in the arena for a quick leg stretching while I cleaned her stall. Of course she was more interested in eating hay off our stockpiles of hay. So I grabbed her and put her in an empty stall. Moved onto Dakota and put him in the arena since he never goes after the hay and got stalls situated and it had stopped storming for a few minutes so I decided to have a go at lunging again. She played her normal game of lets only run along this side of the arena and go from the gate to the hay and back and forth and annoy my owner. So. I went and got the lunge line. I figured since we've had three sessions of respect lunging it wouldn't be too big of a deal and I was right. She went both directions walk and trot like a dream. I can't decide if someone has worked with her before or if she's just super smart. After about 15-20 minutes I ended the session on a good note. The training tarp was on the ground and after sniffing it she walked right on the tarp and stood on it until I asked her to move. Finally, I tested the 'head down' that i had taught her Saturday and she did it immediately. 

Loving this horse more and more every day!

Video of her lunging Saturday with a short clip at the beginning of her cantering earlier this week.

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