Monday, September 8, 2008

Hunter -- 09/08/08

After work I came home to play with the pony. Ike has been chasing this little interloper off and on all day. I was hoping they would be best buddies, but Ike is doing exactly as a wild stallion would do...chasing off a potential rival from his little band. It is not vicious, but it saddens me for Ike's sake. The other 2 horses still do not think he is the leader and no one will stay close to him. I am afraid the day is approaching soon that I must insist to his owner that he be gelded and have the vet check if there is any underlying reason he does not gain weight if Ike is to stay with us any longer. But this is Hunter's blog ....I digress.

Hunter was eager to work. Scott bought him a bright magenta pink yearling halter that fits. We walked around without the come along and Hunter kept himself in the correct position very well. We investigated all the scary farm equipment and I made scary noises come out of tanks, etc. Hunter handled it in stride after initial wariness. Scott helped with the scary noises by weed eating fairly close, but apparently this was something Hunter had been accustomed to from the rescue farm.

The thing I was a bit disappointed in was that Hunter would not trot with me. He barely will pick up the pace to a normal walk. He seems to have two speeds: ultra-slow-mosey or run-for-your-life. I will try the come along next time to see if we can pick up the pace.

I introduced him to the training whip today. Mostly I use it to make my arms longer. He did not care about it at all, even when I leaned over his back and waved it about his head. in fact, he seemed appreciative that I had the whip when I was shooing horseflies. I draped my ample self all over him to start weight training and getting him used to having body parts swinging over his back. He was fascinated with this behavior and seemed to enjoy it.

Foot handling went backwards today. On his near side he is fine. On his off side he doesn't like to balance when I have his rear and jerks his foot away. When I took his fore, I thought he would actually lay down on me. That may have been because he was so willing to be manipulated that he might have thought that was what I wanted. Rather than force him, I went back to the near feet so he could be successful before we moved on to another activity. I am going to get the nice rescue lady to look this upcoming weekend to see if there is any medical reason for the hind off side trouble.

More successful leading time, then on to saddle time. I reintroduced the bareback pad to him. I flopped it around and dropped it on the ground, and generally was simulating the troubles/noises that a child might have with a saddle. Hunter did fine. I made sure stirrups flopped and I cinched the saddle tighter today by removing the girth and running the straps through the d-rings. I must get a really tiny girth strap for him to finish this training. He did not mind being cinched at all. More leading with saddle. I may try the English on him next time as easily as he is taking to this.

Once again Hunter seemed interested in the herd as evening approached. We spent about 40min all told playing about. I tried carrots for a reward today and he wasn't crazy about them. He did eat them, but seems to have this "ok, if that is all you've got" attitude. I tried Honeycomb cereal and he did not seem to really understand what to do with them. He shook his head vigorously and spit out about every other one. He gets a day or 2 off as I have to work a double tomorrow.


Editors note: Hot pink on a palomino paint gelding? The poor guy is going to end up on Dr. Phil one of these years because of that!

1 comment:

Tenley said...

My gelding will not eat carrots or apples - he LOVES marshmallows, but now he gets Buckeye peppermint horse treats and likes them too (probably much healthier than marshmallows).