Thursday, August 25, 2011

goal #2

Ta da!!!!

After Goal # 1 of trail riding, this is the new goal. How cool is that? I really have no desire to be on Shyloh as she jumps over things. . . but it sure would be sweet to watch her jump!

Today was another fantastic day! I managed to catch Shy without grain! I hung out in her paddock for a while and she came right up to me. So I am thinking that what I am doing is working and I am gaining her trust. I groomed Shy up real pretty, then we went to graze.

Grosse Ile Equestrian team was practicing and I did not want to disturb them. I took Shy for a short walk around the property and she grazed as we walked. When equestrian team practice was over, I took her in the arena. The plan for tonight was to work on Shy's confidence by improving her footing. I placed three poles down and walked her over them multiple times. Then we worked on trotting over them. Shy was great! Next we practiced stopping with one foot over the pole, then two feet over the pole. Again, Shy did excellent! The only thing she couldn't do was get three feet over, she kept bringing all four over. After that, we worked on backing over the poles. This involves a lot of trust on the horse's part. Shy struggled a little pit, but she did back over one pole. Finally, I moved the poles closer and worked on all the same things again.

Then I did a really cool thing that is a step towards Goal #2. I used cones and raised one end of two of the poles so that one end was raised and one end was still on the ground. Shy went over them like a champion! We did that a bunch of times and the whole time she was making her "thinking noise." I love that little grunt.

Shy was really using her brain tonight! I have a few more ideas that I want to work with her next time! I am so proud of Shyloh for all the improvements that she has been making. She did not spook once tonight! Well, she did spook once, but I am not counting it. We were walking back to her paddock and Shy was half in the building and half out. She stopped to get some grass and Beth touched her butt. Shy was not expecting that and scooted forward. Shy kept a low head all evening (a sign on relaxation) and never once raised her head away when I went to pet it. .That in itself is a major deal! What an amazing little pony!

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