Saturday, May 11, 2024

Horse Challenges At Home: Toddler Energy

We received our photos from Britt Harvey Photography, and I’ll be adding them to the next few posts, starting with a few of my grandson, the topic of this post, The Challenges Working Horses At Home. 

Generally, I prefer to haul to our local equestrian area because it is easier to keep Tweed’s attention and they have so many great obstacles and trails. Last fall, however, I put up a round pen and had more sand brought in so that I could start working here. Yikes, all the distractions!

It has been much more challenging with the other horses, the green pasture, our dogs…and our grandson. 

Grandson energy! Two year old vibes even rattle steady Eddie Foxy. 

But she gets it done. 

The horses are very interested in him, and…cautious. 

Last night I was working with Tumbleweed in the round pen and grandson was in the arena throwing sand. He was all over the place, with his mom watching. Lots. Of. Energy. 

Tumbleweed was tuned into him, but I thought it would be a good distraction to work through. Oddly, Tweed was refusing to lope. He wanted to stop and stand and, if he could, watch the toddler. It went on like that for a long time, the start, stop and watch. 

I finally had an epiphany that perhaps he was nervous that the grandson would somehow appear in the round pen, and he didn’t want to run him over. So, I asked my daughter to contain grandson a little further away. 

Voila. That was it. 

Tumbleweed started moving out freely and giving me his attention. 

Good Tweed. 

We finished up, did a cool off period with Masterson Method and ended on a good note. I went back to the barn later with grandson, (we were out there a lot last night because of the Northern Lights show) and stood in Tweed’s stall as grandson ran up and down the aisles with grandpa. Tweed was curious, cautious, and a little nervous. I petted on him, and he gave some big releases, then finally relaxed around grandson. 

This is a great opportunity to help Tumbleweed know how to handle himself around kiddos who have a lot of unpredictable chaos energy. 

When I went out to work with him this morning, he was absolutely golden. His lope to trot transitions came fast and he did great in saddle. That was evidence to me that I had read the situation correctly. 

Working Tweed at home has had its ups and downs, but I think that it was a necessary missing piece to our training: work where there is the most temptation, distraction, and …chaos. 

I am back to riding because my saddle is finished, and looks oh so beautiful! More on that later. 

I’ll leave you with a photo of last night’s… AURORA Borealis, looking at our barn. 


  1. Getting their attention at home can be challenging. Good job on figuring out what was going on in his head!
    I stayed up until midnight, nothing happening with the Northern Lights so went to bed, woke up a couple hours later just in time to catch the tail end of it. Not a lot of color, and very slow moving.
    Love the smile on your grandson as he rides!

    1. Wow. I expected that would have seen even more of it. It was truly spectacular. It felt like a portal to heaven had opened up. A vortex!

      Yes, at home training has been interesting. It’s more distracting for me, too.


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