Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Day 2 Spring Training with Tumbleweed

Today's session was short and sweet, and really progressed from yesterday's session.

Here's are some short video clips.

Water.  I want Tumbleweed to willingly come into water with me, stand, turnaround, play, and basically, relax.




If you fast forward to the 1 minute mark (1:00) I ask him for circles to the right.  You'll see that he's trying to back up and evade me, and position himself for a good rear, but thinks better of it when I push him forward.

When you realize rearing as just stopping on two legs, it's easy to fix--just make sure they're always going forward.  At this point in his learning, I still have to keep him close enough to me that I can direct both ends.  The crop works great for this close work.  He's young, and I don't want to do too much of it, but he does need to know how to lead well and safely--so I think it's pretty essential right now--in small segments.

This second video is our second time through the water today.  You can see how much he improved after I directed his feet with the circle work.  It's all connected.  At the end of this video, you'll notice him trying to get his mouth on me.  That's pretty common for him, so I'm turning straw into gold....



Straw into gold?  Yes.  Since Tweed loves to mouth everything, I'm taking that opportunity to run my hands all up under his lips and gums, in his nose, basically, everywhere I can get them.  It seems to satisfy his need for touch, and soften his muzzle and head.

This is one of the things I do during TTouch sessions, and horses love it once they finally figure it out it feels good.  Starting it sooner, rather than later, is a good thing.


7 comments:

  1. Tumbleweed has really grown! Looks like you've got a fair amount of snow left. The puddle work looks great! Good idea using current elements that surround you.

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    1. That was a much bigger puddle, but the sun shrank it. It gives us an opportunity to work on our approach together. I’ve found that he goes through water easily if I’m just a little bit in front of him. But it’s also the only dry, stable spot on our property right now, so I’m confined to that little area you see there. Kind of sucks because the other horses are a huge distraction and it’s a wide open space where he sees lots of room to runaway—which he’d love to do to work off steam. I wish the snow would melt faster. But poor Nebraska—my husband’s home state. Tragic. Makes me appreciate what we have with the slower melt.

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    2. I noticed his distraction, but that is training in and of itself. Yes, Nebraska's flooding is SO devastating! It's hard to watch the videos of the stranded horses & livestock...I can't even imagine living it.

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  2. He has grown! He's a little full of himself but he'll get over it the more he learns his manners. You're doing a great job with him. Nice puddle work.

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    1. Thanks. The fact is, he has an ornery streak that seems just in his nature. For example, if one of our dogs dares to walk behind him while he’s eating, he will most certainly kick it. If a cat runs under him, he will most certainly try to stomp it. His herding instinct is EXTREMELY strong. He wants to herd everything, and he’s very aggressive when he does. I think that translates to a “cowy” horse, but I have never seen anything like him. I love it though! Cracks me up. And the other animals respect him. All the more reason this work is necessary because he is very resistant to being the one who is herded.

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  3. Now the work begins! I think once he is gelded that"ornery" streak will mellow out.
    One thing I would do different if to go with a 4 ft whip instead of the riding crop. If you look at that first video, yo are having to move your feet more than you are moving his feet, and the ability to reach his butt without having to step around will help in sending him around you. You don't need him to be working you!
    Seeing how much they progress from lesson to lesson is so rewarding.

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    1. I started with a long whip the first day, and him further out, but he was too quick to rear up with that much lead. I had to bring him in tight to control his hind disengagement and send him forward, keep him moving. I do hope that today, or tomorrow, we’ve advanced back to it more lead and longer whip. Going left isn’t a problem, even on a long line, it’s only the right side. What would be perfect is a round pen or smaller area, but we’re still snowed in, which leaves me stuck out in the open alongside the turnout. But he’s getting it, as much I was moving in that video, I had to move much faster the previous two days to pull him down to the ground and keep him moving.

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