January 29, 2016

Steve in the Lead

Steve and I gave both horses a good grooming on Saturday and then took them for a walk around the neighborhood.  I was riding Dani and he was leading Chance.  It was best for them to start on the ground and since it'd been another couple weeks since the fall and little work done with Chance we figured it was best to do some groundwork.  The weather has been colder and then there has been some rain and even some snow flurries.  It hasn't bode well for the riding area footing, the muddy Wormhole or for giving us a moment to work with either horse.

I rode behind Steve and Chance and sometimes in front of them.  Steve asked questions a couple times about what to do when Chance was pulling in front of him or circling around him.  I told him to snap the lead and make Chance back if he didn't listen and that seemed to work for them.  Chance was excited to walk out of the road and see some sights.  When we walked past a neighbors house things went awry rather quickly.  Chance decided to prance, toss his head and lift his tail.  Gorgeous as he was Steve looked like he was showing a silly yearling in a halter class and Chance wasn't listening very well.

Steve brought him back to the barn since he was afraid of getting out of control.  I didn't realize that and thought we were going to walk around the back of the property away from the horse Chance seemed to want to impress.  Dani started getting a little agitated now that Chance was gone but I wouldn't have that.  I made her circle and turn her hindquarters and then made her walk behind the house and by a plum tree to the easement on the north of our property.  She glanced at the large heating unit monster on the side of the house but I wasn't going to let her feign spookiness...nope.

We walked around the back of the house and then up the south western side by the wooded lot adjacent to our property.  A loud clicking sound got Dani very agitated and I noticed that a line of the fencing from Westeros was broken and laying inside the field.  There was nothing in our path to hurt her so we walked past the scary spot.  All this time that we were riding around the property Chance was having a fit and galloping around the paddocks and into Gallifrey the pasture we were using at this time.  He gets really upset and tears up the ground with his antics but I made sure Dani kept calm and didn't act up with her own shenanigans.  I don't know what to do about Chance but we'll figure out something.  We'll also have to see how he is if ridden off alone.

I eventually rode Dani around the front of the property and back to the barn where I dismounted to untack my mare.  We ended on a good note, not so sure about Steve though.  I think I need to work on him one on one with Chance, that way I can show him what to do when Chance acts a certain way.  We do plan on taking some lessons soon, possibly together since I'm not against going back to basics anyways.  Always good to work on your seat and the feel of riding since that is sooo much of what it is.  I think a weekly lesson on Chance could do wonders for Steve and I, it would be good for us both to ride Chance and Dani.  

I have noticed though that Chance is slowly getting more responsive to Steve and I at feeding time.  He's nickering more and not acting like we are the mean boss mare like Dani.  Sometimes Chance will move away fast from us as if he's afraid he'll get nipped.  The more we work with him he'll realize we are boss mares but a little more fair than Dani!  He and Dani are definitely different.  He's on the lower end of the pecking order and she's higher so there is a bit more of that "oh my god!" freak out reaction vs. Dani's "um...why should I?" reaction.  It will just take time and as the weather and El Nino cooperate we'll get more time in working with him.  It's a slow process when I have so much I need to do in order to make the substrate safer. 

Oh plus I need to find a job, there is that whole thing, I'm trying to find something biotech/lab related and since I haven't done that work in a while I'm taking some refresher courses at a local college.

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