yesterday I had a good time with the horses. I got Star out and worked him like before only this time I did everything I could to give him a heart attack. He had gotten scared when I was on him on Monday and realized that I needed to really get him through this. So I worked good on backing him and changing directions and getting on and off him but I did it in such a way as to dare him to get scared and just stayed with him. I only had one foot in the stirrup, but that was enough to really get him going. He eventually settled down. I also upped the ante on softness when he is lunging. I want him soft laterally. That was another problem in that he was not as soft as he should be laterally on the lunge. I also really got his feet moving in YH and YF using the rein and the stirrup to get him to move. It wasn't as exciting as the the day before but it still worked. Today with him I put the saddle on and repeated what I did yesterday with getting on and off and really daring him to get scared. He did but he settled down much quicker today. So that I could bounce on him and shake everything and make noise and he stayed calm. Then I did the same thing in the outdoor arena, another area of possible problems. He spooked a little, but settled down. Then I ground drove him at the walk with the bit and got him to get alot softer and getting the hind end over so he stays balanced. It was much calmer for him today.
Robbie, got saddled yesterday and moved in all kinds of directions. I backed him around the arena and had him stepping his butt over with tapping of the whip. I lunged him and jumped him a few times. He did alot better then.
Today, I saddled him and worked on the bit in his mouth with his head down. He got lots better at that. Then I started driving him with one rein. He was real soft with that in both directions. I got a walk trot canter in both directions a couple times. So then I decided to see if we could do both reins. Well another hole in his training was exposed. I kinda thought that he would have a problem with the rein on his back legs (when I spray him there he keeps moving, also when I would do the turn and go he didn't like the rope around his hind end) and he did. The reins burned through my hands and off he went in a circle. I got the reins again and tried to keep him bent in a circle and it was fine, some. But again he would get discombobulated and the reins would burn through my hands. So finally, I took one rein off and just went back to one rein driving to get his confidence back. Then we quit.
So I learned where the holes are in their training. Star needs more scarey stuff, softness and following. Robbie needs work on his hind legs getting things tangled up in them so that he remains calm. Then I will go back to driving with two reins.
All in all, for 40 days of training these horses have come a long way from not being handled much at all to standing for saddling, picking up feet for farrier, leading with mostly no problem. I can move there feet where I want them. They look to me for leadership. In both horses when they were spooked they came to me to get them out of it. Even today with Robbie, I ust treated it as though he was lungeing at liberty, though the reins were dragging behind him and when I asked for a stop he did. So lots of positive things are happening though the speed of progress is much slower than I would have liked.