It’s been a long time since I’ve done anything with Jewel. But over the winter she’s gotten to be quite the attention hound, seeking me out in the pasture for a scratch. She’s become easy to halter and has calmed down A LOT.
All that changed today. *sigh*
She was fine to halter and lead up to the round pen. As soon as I turned her loose in the pen and asked her to “walk on”, it was all down hill from there. I never even touched her with the whip and it was not necessary to chase her around the pen to make her trot. All I did was stay in line with her hip and push her forward with body language. Apparently, what I thought said “move forward” meant “I’m going to catch, kill, and eat you” to her. While she didn’t explode and she kept a steady pace the whole time, there was no way in hell she was letting me near her after a whoa. Nope, sorry Charlie. Not even with treats.
She got worked for well over an hour. I was hoping exhaustion would bring her to her senses, but even though the sweat was flowing, she was not going to give in. I eventually let her go, but she didn’t want to go. She knew I had treats, she just didn’t want to come to me to get them. But maybe, just maybe, I’ll throw some on the ground in front her? No way!
I know I’ll be able to get my hands on her tonight at dinner when she goes into her standing stall, so all is not lost. Lesson learned, next time I keep the longe line on her in the round pen. Eventually, she’ll learn that allowing me near her means rest from work and a good scratch behind the ears (her favorite place). But today was definitely put down as a waste of time and a step backwards for Jewel.