Thursday, July 1, 2010

Joey Day 25

This won't be a long blog. Yesterday, Kathryn, Joey's owner, and Judy, our friend, came over to watch me work with Joey. They wanted to see how he is coming along. So I got him tacked up and immediately took the halter off him and worked him at liberty for a few minutes. Initially, he wanted to run around and act like an idiot, not wanting to stay by me. So I let him run around knowing that he likes to stand around more than he likes to run around. He did. It only took a few laps and he waws following me. So I did some disengagements, million dollar move (moving the shoulder, thus changing sides on him). He really does this pretty good. I got the whip out and cracked that around him for more desensitizing. Then I showe them how he ground drives really well. Someone might ask, "Why ground drive a horse?" Well, glad you asked. It is helps the horse to get used to people and things behind him, so it is partly desensitizing him. It also helps to develop 'feel' for the horse with the rein. In actuality, it is like riding him from the ground. I can teach a horse to stop and back, and turn, etc. from the ground. Thus, putting a handle on him before I ever get on. Now I didn't do this with Joey in that order. Nevertheless, it helps to develop that relationship more. Then I got on him and rode him around, asking for softness. We disengaged, moved the shoulders with softness, walked, trot and canter in both directions. He likes to lope in the right lead and is rocking chair smooth. Worked on some stops and backups too. Judy wanted to test me so she had me drop the reins and ask for a walk, trot without using them. No problem. But then she asked for a walk, so far so good. But when she asked me to ask for a stop, no cigar here. He slowed, but not a stop. Needs work. But it was fun. The most important thing to me over the entire lesson was the fact that he was soft the whole time. He never once got in a tizzy about anything. There was an overall softness in him from start to finish. And that is the way I like it. They both said, that he was usually rather antsy in his demeanor when they would ride. So that is a plus for me. Anyway, it was a good ride.

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