Friday, February 12, 2010

Big Blu Eye

Official Records Information

2 hours

I called Blu into the North Pasture and he came right over, albeit slowly and with pauses (kind of ho-hummy). He is always so good at yielding his hindquarters after he squeezes through the gate, but when I walked off, he did not follow. Rather, he ho-hummed over to the corn crib pen. interesting. I did not want to chase after him and force him to yield and come back to me, so I asked Misty to come over to me. I jumped on her after I put the halter and 12' line on her one-rein style. Blu was kind of watching us out of the corner of his eye the whole time, but it caught him by surprise when we began to come after him. I used the stick and string to push him out of our way and we drove him until he would give us two eyes. Then, just like that, Misty and I would turn and walk away or back up, and, like a fish after a lure, he would come to us. Along the way, I ended up bending Misty and putting the line to two reins because it was two much to be trying to keep the line from falling on the ground when I went no-handed with her to focus on Blu. Also, as a side note, she was getting a bit high in the beginning, but she mellowed out toward the end. After two times that Blu began to walk to us but then changed his mind, he came all the way to us. It was probably and 5-8 minute engagement, but it was well-worth the time of getting those two to work together some more. They were both much better behaved when they were close together. Misty did not try to bite him and he was being much more respectful, more focused on me. Misty did put her ears back a few times.

As soon as Blu was stuck to us, I dismounted and let Misty go with a treat for both of them. Blu was excellent for haltering, putting his nose right in the hole. I stood with him for a while and played the friendly game, but not for too long. He is beginning to move more toward being an extroverted horse and he likes to keep moving on to new things.

I wanted to teach sideways to being faster and more responsive at the walk. Standing in front of him, I put the carrot stick on the driving side and grapevined sideways. I got him to where he would go sideways evenly (not dragging the front or back) with the carrot stick just dragging on the ground, equally well in both directions. It took about 5 minutes. Then, I began to ask for more speed. His eyes would bulge out of his face (hence the title of this post) and I just waited until they got smaller again and his head went down.

I was running around the pasture chasing him sideways for about 1000'+ before he got relaxed in both directions. I was on the 12' line, so it probably looked like I was being dragged around. I wish I had a video of it, it must have looked so funny! To finish the entire thing, he climbed onto the pedestal and put all 4 feet on it, like "safe!" I stood and talked with Bridget, who was playing with Conner, and let Blu relax. He was very touchy feely. I had my hands all over his face and he was really loving it, and so was I. He got to relax like that for about 5 minutes and it was his first time on the pedestal with all four feet and it was all his idea.

I felt like he would be a wonderful horse to ride now that he was acting so together. I lead him to a barrel, climbed on the barrel, and asked him to yield his hindquarters to me. After I few taps, he understood and moved right over. I put my foot on the right side of his back and rubbed it to see if he would move away. Now that he was sure of my intentions, he still stood still, so I slid on.

I was riding with two reins and no carrot stick. I began by testing how well he was steering, then how well he was listening to my seat. Both were excellent. I was trotting once in a point to point fashion when he suddenly offered the canter. Not just any canter, though, a round canter. I thought maybe he was going to start bucking, but I glanced down at his eye and he was happy. It was so great. We cruised all over the pasture like that. I worked on switching leads. The insides of my legs were sore from pushing him over to change leads. Our sideways is a bit broken. We worked on it some at the trot, but until it gets perfect at the trot and acceptable at the canter, he probably won't be doing any flying lead changes under me. He did break to a trot and pick up the correct lead. I also want to mention that his steering at the canter was never tight. I never asked for sharp turns because I did not want him to fall down, but he was really loose in the arcs we did do. He was also really coordinated. It just all felt good and I hope that I can continue to build on that. Well, I know that I can continue to build on that.

Natural Horsewoman Out.

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About Me

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I am a young horsewoman with a million things on my mind. I have been a student of the horse all my life. As a little girl, I had a desire to understand horses on deeper levels. I believed that there was no such thing as a bad horse, and I believed that all horses were beautiful. One might say that I was a naive child, but I guess I don't have an excuse anymore, because I still believe all of that, and Parelli Natural Horsemanship is helping expand on this perspective.

What We Are Currently Playing With

  • Moving Close Circles at Liberty
  • Soft, Balanced Canter on 45' Line
  • Zone 5 Driving