Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Brief Update-Trust And Other Things

Tonight I found out a couple things:

1) Miles hearts Dr. Cook's Bitless Bridle. Rode with it briefly today, and we both love it. More details and pics to come.

2) Miles also hearts mares, and spring, and occasionally acting like the stereotypical OTTB. He was a feisty thing tonight! Our adventure started with 2 lovely mares in the barn, who had his full attention, wink wink nudge nudge.

I then took him to the arena, where the ice continues to sliiiiide off the roof intermittently and CRASH to the ground. I lunged Mr. Fresh and Horny in scary corners and over little verticals, where he continues to improve his skills at the trot and canter (argh, pictures, video, I know!).

I'm kinda proud of myself at how I handled Mr. Happy Go Lucky tonight. I don't know if it was his previous handling (I think, and I hope so), or if it was me, but every time he spooked or got a little fresh on the lunge, he proceeded to throw his head up reflexively, as if expecting a good yank. I've noticed this behavior on the lead line as well at times. Tonight, the lunge was soft between us, and I felt him start to relax more and more as he realized he was allowed to freak out, within reason, as long as he respected me and stayed on the circle. He did so well, on both counts.

I haven't lunged him in anything but his halter with a sheepskin noseband for months now, and I've NEVER disciplined him for spooking (which honestly, I can count on one hand the number of times he's spooked on the lunge). Still, in the beginning, I did lunge him in a rope halter, which is a bit more severe. He's so, so, SO much better at lunging now that there is rarely a time when the line is taught between us, but it wasn't always so. Regardless of the reason for his head tossing, we really worked together tonight, and he saw that I wasn't going to punish him for silliness. By the time I got on him (really, just to walk and cool him out at that point) he was a bit tired, yes, but his eye was soft and I just *felt* something passing between the two of us.

It was nice:) So nice I totally forgot about the camera in my pocket I brought along in order to update the blog with some long overdue pictures GrumbleGrumbleGrumble.

Ah, well, you can't have everything I guess. Still, I'll take what we had tonight every single time.


  1. I'm glad you've found something that works for you both. That can be a ridiculous challenge.

  2. Oh yes, it's that time of year for the Spring Sillies. :)

  3. Mr. Fresh and Horny - love it!! I think that thing you felt passing between the two of you is called "love". :-)

  4. Say no more!

    Horses are total narcs, they'll always tell you how something else treated them. "Show me your horse and I'll show you who you are," very fitting. Miles shows that you are awesome.

  5. Don't you love geldings? "I think I should be thinking about something, but I'm not... sure.. what.. BUT I'm going to act silly just in case."

    Bar has taught me a lot about not over-disciplining. You want to dance? That's okay. As long as you respect the bubble. The other night, after 10 days of inactivity, he backed himself to the very end of his lead rope and then reared. While pivoting away from me. "I JUST FEEL SOOOO GOOD, Mom!!!!"

    Had to give him kudos for athleticism and for taking care of me while letting off pent up steam.

    You are awesome. That's what your big, brown mirror says to you.

  6. Thanks everyone:)

    Jessica, your comments are always the sweetest...you're so good for my self esteem;) Not to mention I feel like I know Bar inside and out! What a sweet boy.