Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Getting Tumbleweed Ready for 2 Year Old School

An update on Mr. Tweed who I'm trying to prepare for June kindergarten. I don't want to instill any bad habits in him, so I'm really only concentrating on the basics -- at the heart of which --- is rewarding him for try.

He stands tied everyday  --- started with Uncle Cowboy --- then progressed to time alone --- each day the time tied increases --- his release is when he cocks a leg and relaxes.

The work Shirley did with him sure helps with this, but it's never fun for a horse to stand for long periods of time alone. When he goes to training, he will consider that time his chance to relax.  He will stand tied for hours a day -- but that's for June --- this is now --he stands tied about 30 minutes.

We grab a glass of wine or clean stalls while he is practicing being tied. The dogs even get in on the watching action.  I kind of feel sorry for Tweed, but I know it's going to make him a better horse -- and golden horses always have a home in this world -- no matter what happens.

We started lunging after a long winter break.

la resistance'!

la blow up'

Like every horse, he is great at doing just enough --- but take him slightly past just enough -- you will discover resistance.  That is our goal -- find it -- remain calm -- continue with your plan -- do not let him get away with it. Um no, I asked you to continue on that way, T'weed.  

And voila! You get a well-mannered boy.

And well-mannered boys get some lovin'.

He is trying to understand what I want and give it -- but I'm trying to get him to the point that he understands that when we're together -- it's a creative process -- different ever day --- no time limit -- no set amount of laps on the line -- it's an all in experience for however long it takes.

I call it a work ethic. He's going to need it in June. He's going to need it in life with humans.

A couple day of packing various blankets. I work with him until I can drop his lead, have him stand "ground tied" and allow me to throw the blanket all over his back, butt, neck, head -- from both sides -- as well as --- drop it on the ground on both sides -- pack it at a trot -- allowing it to fall off on both sides as he's moving.

The blanket training was interesting. He was quite scared of the blue bareback pad. I would hold it out in front of him --- and when he looked at it, I'd withdraw it. That advanced to when he put his nose on it -- I'd withdraw it.  And all that advanced to him not caring one wit about it.

The training wasn't about the pad -- really -- it was about facing what he fears and seeing the scary thing move away.  Oh, he's so powerful, that boy!  He just looks at the monsters --- and they dissolve!

We're still good buddies, and he still comes trotting up to me when I come out to get him.  I guess we're okay.

I sure am going to miss him when he goes to kindergarten.