Class of 2013?

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StraightForward
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Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Mon Oct 12, 2015 3:41 pm

Anyone else? My new 2 yo arrives within the next week. She knows how to tie, load and pick up her feet. That is about it :lol:

I'm trying to think of all the new things she will need to learn:

Wearing blankets
Cross-tying
Going through barn alleys (she's been raised on 100 acres with a run-in shed)
Getting used to 4-wheelers, tractors, dogs, little kids
Fly spray
Hoses/bathing
Leg wraps/wearing boots
Being away from the herd
More in-hand work (trotting, turning hips/shoulders away from pressure, backing)
Wearing tack
General idea of lunging
Going new places

What are you working on with your babies to prep them for their working lives?
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Canyon » Tue Oct 13, 2015 1:42 am

How exciting! Please post pics when you get her settled in.

I'd add to your list - getting used to those scary clippers.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Spotted at X » Tue Oct 13, 2015 3:33 am

Make sure you add, loading and unloading safely to your list, even if they do it well now, be certain to practice! Nothing worse then a horse that takes you an hour to load! Ugh.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Tue Oct 13, 2015 4:11 am

Yes, how did I forget clippers? Luckily I have a very quiet pair of cordless ones that are great for training. Then we move up to the A-5's later.

Loading - yes, we'll be going places weekly if at all possible. She pretty much self-loads in a very similar trailer to mine, so that is one place where I think we're good and will get plenty of practice.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Mon Oct 19, 2015 2:16 am

Well she arrived last night and naturally I have to leave town for work tomorrow. But she's here safe and sound and I'll start figuring out what she needs to learn. I washed her socks today because they were dirty from the trailer ride and her PPE noted a minor case of scratches. Had to do most of it with a sponge because she clearly is not used to being hosed, though she did tolerate me spraying her front feet for short bits.

Here are some photos for Canyon:
Image
Image
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Canyon » Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:06 am

Thank you for the photos!

She is very classy looking. Congrats!

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby bascar » Wed Oct 28, 2015 9:55 am

Very good looking for a 2 yr old! I hid Bianca in the back 40 for her first two years. She turned 3 just last month and I'm thinking about sending her back there again....

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Thu Nov 05, 2015 2:09 pm

Would love to see photos of Bianca, Bascar!

I'm super pleased with my filly. The breeder did a very nice job of teaching her manners, and I think she is also just naturally sensible and laid-back. I had no problem trimming her feet without any assistance last night even though it was getting cold and blustery. She learned the idea of lunging in about 2 five minute sessions and is pretty nonchalant about being blanketed now. We're going to work on to taking the bridle and wearing a surcingle in the next few days. She's got a bit of rain rot that is mostly healed up, but I'm working on getting the scabs off, so might not bother with saddling until those are 100% gone from her back. She's definitely getting the hang of being fussed over!
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Kyra's Mom » Fri Nov 06, 2015 5:39 am

Super... Nika, did you come up with a barn name yet? I will have to get over to see her again soon and swoon over her :lol: . My little gray dirty yak doesn't hold much enchantment right now. I'm holding off on the blanket until the temps are consistently in the 40's so must contend with dirt :P .

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Fri Nov 06, 2015 4:43 pm

They are all getting rather yak-like aren't they? The white socks are total dirt magnets.

Still kind of stuck on a name, but I'm done with my work travel for a few months now, so hopefully I'll be able to spend a little more quality time with her and see if something sticks.

Hope you're getting over your cold! Just give me a call if you want to come by and see her in actual daylight one of these days. :)
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Kyra's Mom » Sat Nov 07, 2015 4:47 am

StraightForward wrote:Just give me a call if you want to come by and see her in actual daylight one of these days.


Oh, I will. Yes cold is better. I actually rode today for the first time in 2 weeks. Between my health, my parents (2 parents, 3 falls in the last 4 weeks :( ) and work...my riding has been rather sporadic. That is why if you want to ride something...come on over. She certainly isn't over worked.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Sat Nov 07, 2015 3:21 pm

Oh geeze, sorry about the parent troubles. They're lucky to have you close by to help them out. Yes, I will probably take you up on riding Kyra this winter, once I get the garden put away and get through my latest round of house decrapification.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Baroque » Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:14 pm

Mine is more a class of 2014 with this one who is coming up to a year in age now. :lol:

She is a PRE filly from 2 Spanish imports of impeccable breeding and has been with us for a few weeks now and is settling in nicely with one of my other youngsters.
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She's going to be a big girl - mummy is about 16.2hh and so is dad!

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby ironbessflint » Tue Dec 08, 2015 8:17 pm

I have a 13! Hard to believe it's almost time to start thinking about ACTUALLY doing something with him!

He's largely been turned out. Handled regularly, feet picked daily, and worked with on SOMETHING about once a week. He blankets, has worn all tack, stands for the farrier, has been shown in hand, and clips well from the neck down :-P He works quite well in the arena, and moves his haunches and shoulders away when I ask. He's done a bit of very light lunging, and I just introduced the idea of ground driving. He's worn a bit twice. Bathing is the one thing we still DO NOT DO, but that must wait until spring to address more.

We just our breed's futurity show in October, and he handled it SO beautifully. I'm really quite pleased. As a yearling he spent his time on the triangle practicing his airs :lol: My entire goal for this year was to keep him calm and listening. I literally jogged the triangle. But he kept his eye on me and matched my stride perfectly the whole way around, never looking at the crowd or the judge, or listening to the loudspeaker. Exactly what I wanted. I'm sure his breeder was less than thrilled with our second place performance, but his behavior was perfect and if he's relaxed in a dressage ring some day, then I don't much care if he did well on a triangle as a two year old!

The plan is to get him driving next year, and hopefully out and about some more. Then sit on him in the fall, and start riding at four. I'm in no hurry, and right now his legs and his brain seem to operate on different planes many days! :-P

National Haflinger Show in August:
Image

Image

Playing at home:
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Last spring:
Image

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Thu Dec 10, 2015 4:52 am

Thanks for sharing Baroque and IronBess. Can't wait to follow along with your guys' adventures.

We aren't doing much this winter. I was hoping to haul over to the indoor tonight but it was raining and windy earlier, and I didn't want her getting excited and slipping on the trailer ramp or something my first time hauling her. The weather was cooperative later but my body decided it was battling a cold and wanted a nap. Oh well, plenty of time

The rain rot is gone, but I'm sticking with a surcingle for a while because she's not exactly thrilled about being girthed (not bad, just goosey). She is taking the bridle OK and learned to lunge within about 4 sessions and has also learned to lead from the off side and stay with me pretty well at walk and trot. It appears that she was trained to disengage her hindquarters so I am working on convincing her that she can move her shoulders instead, or move her hindquarters towards me on cue.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Sue B » Thu Dec 10, 2015 6:53 pm

yeah but, I still don't know what name you settled on, sf. I was going to change Tio's name never did get round to it. His registered name is Ferrero btw. Haven't decided if I should change that either. lol

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:57 pm

Yes, she is Teflon, a name won't stick to that girl.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Sun Feb 21, 2016 3:25 pm

We're having some nice weather here and the arena's usable again, so we're working on this stuff a few days a week. Forgot to add clipping to this list. She is not a fan of the clippers, but we're getting there. Cannot wait to give her a bath; we got an Insta-Hot for Christmas, so if it hits 60 next weekend as forecast, she might be getting at least a partial bath. She is a dirty, dandruffy girl.

Oh, and she's got some thrush, so I guess standing in soaking boots is going to be added to the list pretty soon. That should be interesting.

StraightForward wrote:Anyone else? My new 2 yo arrives within the next week. She knows how to tie, load and pick up her feet. That is about it :lol:

I'm trying to think of all the new things she will need to learn:

Wearing blankets This one is covered
Cross-tying
Going through barn alleys (she's been raised on 100 acres with a run-in shed)done
Getting used to 4-wheelers, tractors, dogs, little kidsdone, though I'm sure we'll discover new kinds of monsters
Fly spray
Hoses/bathingshe stood for having her legs hosed the other day
Leg wraps/wearing bootsstill not crazy about this; a little naughty when I put the hinds on
Being away from the herdso far no problems
More in-hand work (trotting, turning hips/shoulders away from pressure, backing)she's picking up this stuff pretty quickly, but it seems like she was trained to disengage the hindquarters, so still some work to do on moving shoulders instead. Also working on getting her to sidle over and stand at the mounting block.
Wearing tackgetting there; she's not a fan of the girth/surcingle getting too snug and isn't falling for the fruit leather bit wrapping trick that's worked so well on my last three babies
General idea of lungingshe picked this up so quickly. moving on to ground driving soon
Going new placesnot yet; trying to get her self-loading before we venture off the farm

What are you working on with your babies to prep them for their working lives?
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Red's Mom » Tue Oct 10, 2017 7:37 pm

I see all these posts are from 2015! Two years old. When are we too old for the Young Horse Forum?

Meet Red, he is a 2013 Thoroughbred that never made it to the track. He doesn't even have a tattoo. He was born in Temecula, California. He was at a training barn, but didn't graduate to the race track. Lucky boy!

He has a very easy going and willing temperament and he is well put together. I measured him last April when I got him, he had just turned 4. He was 16.2+ hands. I believe he will grow another inch. He looks like an Appendix QH. People always ask if he is a QH.

He learns quickly, we w/t/c in the arena, and he performs a decent leg yield. He is left handed, and we are working on improving canter, especially going right. Right lead canter gets strong and a bit bargy. I have difficulties keeping him on a 20m circle going right. Any exercises for that that have helped you, please let me know.

He is also working on trail riding technique. The trails in my neighborhood are very steep and rutted. He has difficulty going downhill. He loses balance and falls into canter! Scary! I now have him in a corral that has a somewhat steep slope, and I have been hand walking him on the steep trails. He is getting better at getting his hind feet underneath himself and not falling on the forehand going down hill. I have had other youngsters that took to trail riding much easier.

How are those other 4 year olds doing?

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:46 pm

Thanks for resurrecting this thread; a lot has happened since I last posted here, but I think our 2013 models still qualify as youngsters. ;)

The GOV mare I was posting about before bucked me off, then a trainer got her in an accident and instilled a lot of fear in her last November. She has been with a different trainer since April, and is coming along, but will probably be out there for several more months. I'm going to see her on Thursday, and hopefully meet with a new trainer who is more local on Friday to work on a transition plan (current place is a western trainer over 100 miles away).

In the meantime, I decided I needed a project to keep me from getting rusty, and so I'd have something to ride while saving up for another fancy horse if I end up selling the GOV mare. So in April, I bought Annabelle, pictured in my avatar. She's a 2013 Appendix mare that was greenbroke when I got her, but has a great mind and is a pretty nice mover. We had a bit of a rough start with a strangles scare and a couple injuries, but fingers crossed, are on the right track now. We'll be showing at Intro level on Saturday, and I hope to have her going Training/First next summer and jumping small courses. Not sure where we'll go from there, but that's the short term plan. She's lots of fun and I'm learning a lot as I work with her.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Red's Mom » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:26 am

SF, Glad I resurrected it too! We have a lot in common with our horses. I can't wait to here about the show Saturday. On Sunday, I am taking my 12 hand pony to a driving clinic.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Linden16 » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:14 am

I can join in! My two 2013 models are going well under saddle. Growing like WEEDS right now though. Yikes

My mare yesterday (I didn’t realize how much she is growing behind- can’t wait to see her catch up in front LOL
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And then my gelding is a solid 17.2 or more now, he is doing so great.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Linden16 » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:20 am

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Linden16 » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:24 am

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Young horses definitely keep you on your toes- these two are absolute love. It’s. And are really attached to each other, so I probably should start to “wean” themselves apart from each other.

My boarding barn isn’t huge so it might prove to be a bit of a challenge. Tips?

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby heddylamar » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:59 am

I have a 2013 model too. Keeping with my theme, it's another red-headed mare :)

Maia was started under saddle in late February with a trainer who uses Buck Brannaman's methods. I've started incorporating his methods with my other red-headed mare, Maia's dam, Anzia.

No good under saddle photos — I'm normally riding alone — but here are a few pasture photos from September, before and after I whacked off 6-8 inches of mane.

Image

Image
The dark chestnut in the background is her dam, Anzia.

Image

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Red's Mom » Sat Nov 11, 2017 10:08 pm

Linden, and HeddyLamar, your horses are gorgeous! How do you post such large, lovely photos? Inhave the darnedest time, and I think photos really make this BB more fun. Linden, as I recall you were rom the old UDBB and had an injury that kept you from riding, or am I confusing you with someone else?
I recently found out that the person who sold me my horse did not divulge important information about Red. It turns out he had a bowed tendon, was supposed to be rehabbed, but wasn't. When I bought him, I had a PPE done, and he passed. I didn't have X-rays done. He has been sound since I have had him, going on 7 months now, but I am going to take things slow and careful.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Red's Mom » Sat Nov 11, 2017 10:11 pm

Linden, and HeddyLamar, your horses are gorgeous! How do you post such large, lovely photos? I have the darnedest time trying to post photos, and I think photos really make this BB more fun.

Linden, as I recall you were a member of the old UDBB and had an injury that kept you from riding, or am I confusing you with someone else?

Heddy, Red is a red head too!

I recently found out that the person who sold me my horse did not divulge important information about Red. It turns out he had a bowed tendon, was supposed to be rehabbed, but wasn't. When I bought him, I had a PPE done, and he passed. I didn't have X-rays done. He has been sound since I have had him, going on 7 months now, but I am going to take things slow and careful.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Linden16 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:33 pm

Red's Mom wrote:Linden, and HeddyLamar, your horses are gorgeous! How do you post such large, lovely photos? I have the darnedest time trying to post photos, and I think photos really make this BB more fun.

Linden, as I recall you were a member of the old UDBB and had an injury that kept you from riding, or am I confusing you with someone else?


No you remembered correctly! I have been through 3 spinal surgeries for recurring herniated discs, two episodes of multiple unrelated spinal fractures, rib fractures, and three failed knee realignment surgeries including grafts and screws.

I was settled to never ride again, to prevent any further injuries, but then both parents died unexpectedly within 8 months of each other, just over a year ago. In addition to their deaths, my closest uncle who was a second father to me my entire life passed away 3 days after my own father.

My parents never got the chance to do the things they dreamed of doing after their retirement, and it was devastating to know that. My entire perspective shifted, and I realized that life has no guarantees, no do-overs, and that the fear of pain or failure should never be bigger than the hope and desire of doing what makes us happy to be alive. Life is never long enough, but if you have the chance to do what you love, for as long as you can, it CAN be, enough.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Linden16 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:35 pm

Oh and I copy the image source for my photos on Facebook, and just paste that URL into the attachment coding. They turn out as large as they exist on FB.

I can help you if you want. Try it out first, you can likely succeed!

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby heddylamar » Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:36 am

I figured Red was a chestnut too :)

My photos are on Flickr, and I just copy the URL* and embed in the img code.
It will read:
[img]url.jpg[/img]

*Wherever the image is hosted -- Flickr, google, facebook, etc -- the image properties need to be set to share publicly, and the URL needs to end with ".jpg"

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:38 am

I too have a 2013-born chestnut, a connemara-TB cross gelding, who I've owned for 3 weeks..... he's a bit of a 'project', very limited previous handling (why do people breed then not bother to do any work with the young one?! grrrr), and super sensitive and reactive and anxious. His neck and back muscles feel very tight, so have been doing some simple massage to try to help those, and also adding Mg and Se to his diet as we suspect he's never had supplements. Poor lad, he's had a big change coming from his home farm to us. Goals at the moment are getting him to relax with the regular stuff : tie, groom, feet, lead, wear a cover, plus some simple lunge work. He seems quick on the uptake and is an absolute sweetie. We've called him Fergal.

Red's Mom and Linden, I remember you guys from the UDBB, great to see you both here. Linden, your horses look spectacular and good for you continuing to ride despite some physical difficulties, hope all is well. RM, hope the tendon is not a big issue, at least you now know about it and can plan your work program accordingly.

Heddylamar, your mare is lovely, what is her breeding?

SF, I enjoy hearing about both Annabelle and Pickle, hope they are progressing well. And also interested to hear about how you find the Ritter on-line course, I can't afford that amount at the moment so did not sign up, but it is an intriguing model for those of us that do not have decent local instruction....

Anyways, here's a few photos of young Fergal :

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby StraightForward » Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:01 pm

What a pretty horse, Anne! I'm sure he'll make up for his lack of handling and progress quickly with you.

I'm really enjoying the Ritter course. They actually opened it back up yesterday for two more days of enrollment. You can do a 6-month payment plan ;) for me, that ends up being the same price as 2 lessons a month. It's a lot more flexible though, and since Annabelle seems to be allergic to lessons and upends the plans each time I manage to schedule them, and we're going into the cold/wet/limited indoor access time of year I'll probably just apply the course materials when we're able.
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby heddylamar » Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:29 pm

Anne wrote:Heddylamar, your mare is lovely, what is her breeding?


Thanks Anne! Maia's a mutt :lol: Dam is Polish Arab/QH and sire is TB -- Innkeeper (out of Sue Babe and Secretatiat).

Her grandma, my dearly departed oldster, was triple A racing QH stock on both sides, and I bred her to a very refined Polish QH for more of a sport horse (successful build, temperamental fail) in Anzia. Maia's sire was chosen for his completely unflappably nature, plus size, so she's a bit calmer, and much bigger than her dam, Anzia, or grandma. I'm hoping for another eventer, and thus far, I think it will happen.

I've never understood the "leave them to grow up" philosophy either. Regular handling when young makes it so easy to introduce new things to youngsters. If we can judge from still photos ( :D ) guy looks like he'll learn pretty quickly.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Linden16 » Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:33 pm

Thanks Anne. I am enjoying both of them immensely...this is the dream, right?

Many people tell me I'm crazy for buying two 4 yr olds at once, but honestly the baby years are the most rewarding for me, since every ride almost I can feel them getting stronger and braver and more developed. Sure, I could have gone out and bought a competitive GP horse, but the challenge wouldnt have been there for me...and I would feel almost like I cheated. Gosh, the babies are just so much fun.

With each of them being so absolutely different, I feel like I am learning more than I would have if I had bought two similar types. Harbour is huge and rock steady, but not easy to sit. He's big. His movement is big. Keeping up with him really challenges my fitness. But, contact wise and sensitivity wise he is so light and easy that he almost defies his size. Ehrenhafte is tiny, petite, and razor sharp. She is the easiest thig to sit and to bend and to move around, almost like a little pony. (but she's now 16.2) she gets a bit insecure if she doesnt trust a person, and it took a while for her to bond with me. Now, she is my shadow. She adores me. Harbour adores everyone. LOL. I am forever grateful for this bittersweet opportunity, I didn't think I would actually be able to have this, until much later in life, when I likely wouldn't be physically able to enjoy it.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Sue B » Sat Nov 25, 2017 6:41 pm

Great updates you guys! Red's mom, I hope you figure out how to share more pictures so we can see more of your handsome red head. Linden, your two are growing and developing so nicely--so much fun taking the journey with them. SF, I hope Anabelle recovers from her latest incident and you can get more riding in. Maybe the new saddle fit will help? Anne, your guy is gorgeous. I got Rudy as a coming 6yr old (he turned 6 1 month after I purchased him) that had only been halter broken and taught to stand for the farrier. While I did spend a good 3 months with just ground work, he progressed fairly rapidly once under saddle. I used TTouch to teach him the basics of ground manners and led him all over the place during the ground work phase and throughout his first year under saddle. To this day, when he sees "the wand" (a livestock whip) he becomes focused on me instead of whatever is causing him anxiety. Maybe that would help you?

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Sun Nov 26, 2017 6:28 am

Linden, love the descriptions of your two youngsters. Sue, thanks for describing Rudy's training, it is encouraging to hear about, and I'll read up on ttouch. At the moment we are doing lots of leading with small challenges (step closer to the scary thing) and he *is* improving. We're certainly in no rush, and I can easily see 3 months or so spent on ground work. Once my shoulder recovers from a small 'oopsie' we had last week (Fergal panicked and bolted when he brushed his rump against a post and knocked me flying...., ouch) I intend to pony him out from our other horse as well as the leading work.

Looking forward to everyone's updates!!

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Sue B » Wed Nov 29, 2017 5:15 pm

I should add, Anne, that I also do a form of modified clicker training, involving treats and the words "yes" and "no". I attach treats to the word "yes" such that, at first, every time I say "yes" the horse instantly gets a treat. I'll even say "yes" while the horse is eating it. After about a hundred treats or so, even the slowest horse, attaches "yes" to the pleasure of eating a treat and you no longer need to actually give the treat every time. From there on out, you randomly give a treat with "yes"--just be sure that WHENEVER you happen to give the horse a treat (for any reason) to say "yes" as he/she takes it. If the horse demands a treat, you simply say "no" and withdraw the treat. I teach them to turn their head away when I say no and wait for a "yes". Even very demanding, extremely treat-driven Tio quickly learned to wait for the treat. Once yes and no are established, you can control their actions even from a distance or from the saddle by breaking down what you want them to do into small steps that can be rewarded. This is called "shaping" in clicker-speak. My over-achiever Rudy, finds this yes/no thing very comforting, because right away he knows if he is on the right track when he is trying to learn something new.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Thu Nov 30, 2017 6:06 am

Sue - oh, I like that idea! thanks for taking the time to explain. We always have treats on hand, but tend to hand them out fairly randomly, and usually after a spell of good work, so I don't think there's much learning attached to them. But if we do your yes/no system, I can see how that could help, and especially if I start it with Fergal, who seems like a very bright young chap, he just needs to work out what we want.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby heddylamar » Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:46 am

Maia's going to be the death of me.

Grande dame (lol): 1 -- ONE -- medical emergency in 26 years (nail, meet hoof; no damage)
Dam: 0 -- ZERO -- medical emergencies in 19 years **knock on wood** One colic scare, courtesy of Maia.

Maia is the universe's way of getting even with me. She's 4, and we're already at 3 medical emergencies. The first, at nearly 3 months old involved a two week stay at MSU vet school (dam's colic scare), and several months' stall rest. Tonight was minor (choke), but major enough that my unruffle-able, seen-everything BO called me and,thus,the vet.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Fri Dec 08, 2017 5:52 am

Heddylamar, I hope Maia is doing OK after that choke episode, sounds scary.

Fergal is making progress : he's generally calmer, I'm starting to be able to pick up his back feet (he was quite kicky initially), he's OK with having a cover thrown over him (haven't yet done it up), and being sponged off after a work session. Getting better on the lunge : he'd prefer not to go on the right rein and will try to duck back to the left, but he's responsive to being corrected. He's also accepting being touched all over with a long (lunge) whip - was OK with a shorter whip but initially extremely suspicious of the longer stick. Am trying to keep up with Sue's modified clicker training ideas, have a pocketful of treats and say 'good' + treat when he gives a correct response. He gets a strong 'no' if he shows any pushiness.

One very nice response yesterday when we lead through a rather narrow section with scary tractor on one side and trees on the other : first time he rushed and was very tense, so we went back and forth until I could ask for halt next to the tractor and get him to put his head down. Yay!

Here's a couple of pics from lunge work a few days ago:

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby heddylamar » Fri Dec 08, 2017 1:32 pm

Fergal looks great on the lunge line! He’s going to be a real eye-catcher under saddle.

Maia’s doing just fine. She’s not too pleased about her new slow feed hay net, but she’s a fan of wet grain. You’d think we’re starving the poor dear the way she carries on :D

She’s coming along under saddle. Right now I’m back to battling a bad habit of my own, plus a dealing with a hip injury that corresponds to the bad habit, so other than cooperating like a lady (that’s a stretch most days right now), Maia has little direct work.

When we’re all together, I’m asking her to yield to the bit with an inside bend, and then step forward. Yesterday that mostly resembled yield-bend-pin ears, swish tail, and threaten to buck. There was a lot of remedial “you will not step out of turn” :P Fortunately, she responds well to being reprimanded, so little more than one or many nose-to-knee circles (normally I kick her forward, but not with my hip injury) is ever required.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Tue Dec 19, 2017 5:19 am

Fergal's been here 8 weeks today, and looking back, yes, there has been progress! He's more relaxed on the lunge, and is good with halt/walk/trot commands. Not perfect, but good.

The last couple of days I've started some in-hand flexions / jaw releases. Mostly following the Mark Russell descriptions in his book. Fergal's quite opinionated about it - initially tossing and flinging his head around with his mouth clamped shut, during which I'm trying very hard to keep a
steady (light!) pressure in the corner of his mouth, and only release when he chews. Got a couple of nice releases after a light ask with no head tossing, so ended the session there.

Also working on truck-loading : yesterday, he walked up to the ramp quite promptly, and pawed at the ramp. Today, he walked up, pawed a few times, then stepped up with both front feet => treats! Repeated that 3 times, and called it quits.

He's generally getting better to lead, eating his feed with more gusto, and feeling much softer through his neck and back. Also improving with his feet - front feet good to pick up and hold, back feet a little less reliable - just tries to grab them away with a bit of a kick. I can usually get him to relax and just let me hold it, but I'd still like this to be better.

Next big step will be lunge with surcingle on.... in preparation, I'm holding a thick rope around his belly in a slip loop arrangement, and pulling it somewhat tight while asking him to move around me. Got a few wee bucks with a scoot forward yesterday, but just kept quietly asking him to move
and he did settle.

So still much to do, but good to feel that we are improving some of the basics.

Hope all you others with young ones are enjoying progress.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Sue B » Thu Dec 21, 2017 6:21 pm

Gosh Anne, great update on Fergal. Something I learned from Tio (my 2011 model) is that he needs to have ground work prior to riding and not just lunging. Even though my lunging routine is all about focused, forward work, Tio needs the ground work to soften his neck and back. Something to think about when you are finally able to climb on board. Rudy had many yeeha moments in the early surcingle and then saddle phases of training, as did Tio; fortunately that did not translate to bucking much with me on board. Perhaps because they were corrected on the ground for making the mistake of broncing too hard. Rudy managed to tip himself over several times before he decided that that kind of insane bucking was not worth hitting the ground. lol. Tio has been more challenging because of his build and somewhat pushy nature, but even he knows what a sharp growl from me means when he contemplates full on bucking and he pretty much quits. To be clear, I am never ugly to them, but I am insistent that good manners be maintained at all times. I establish very clear lines for what is acceptable and what is not, early on in the training process, something which my horses seem to appreciate.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:12 am

Sue, you give me hope! I really appreciate you sharing your Rudy and Tio experiences. We've brought on a number of youngsters, but none so sensitive and reactive as this guy. It's a good reminder to install a 'no' (growl) command. They have to learn what is not desired, as well as what is right. I am probably guilty of 'tiptoeing' a little because I don't want to upset him. But I am getting better at giving a strong 'no' ('UUTT') when he is being a pillock.

Today, we decided to see how he'd react to a plastic bag tied to a whip, and were pleasantly surprised that he coped quite well : a bit tense and worried, but I could touch him all over and he stood still. Then moved on to some rope-around-the-belly work : starting with the rope draped over his back, then holding it loosely around his belly while he walked around (and then asking for a halt, head-down, and prompting a chew with a treat), and progressing to pulling it tight as he walked, which initially prompted a humpy back / buck / scoot, but I could keep him in a circle and keep the pressure on until he slowed and relaxed a fraction, then I released the rope.

Did that on both reins, letting him move around me while variously tightening and releasing the rope, and he settled really well, stopping the humping, and then halting when I asked even with tension on the belly-rope. Phew, some progress! He is really trying hard to work things out.

Plan to do the same tomorrow, in among having a relaxing xmas day, and the day after, and the day after etc etc, until he loses the tension. Will keep updating this thread, and still hoping others will share updates, no matter how minor!

Merry Christmas everyone.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby kande50 » Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:58 am

Anne wrote:Sue - oh, I like that idea! thanks for taking the time to explain. We always have treats on hand, but tend to hand them out fairly randomly, and usually after a spell of good work, so I don't think there's much learning attached to them. But if we do your yes/no system, I can see how that could help, and especially if I start it with Fergal, who seems like a very bright young chap, he just needs to work out what we want.


Ah yes, the story of every horse's life (what the *()&)#@! does she want) !!!!

Another strategy for sending clearer messages is to keep the association between the treat and the "yes" stronger by always giving a treat when you say yes. That doesn't mean you can't also have a "keep going signal" which means "yes, but keep going", but your "keep going" signal should be different from the one you use as a click ("yes") so that they both don't sound like the same marker signal to your horse. :-)

In fact, I tend to just use "keep going" because it sounds so different from the "yes" (click). And of course, it's important to be aware of what we do with our hands and bodies when we say "yes" or "keep going", because those are often a much more salient cues than any vocalizations we make.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:49 am

yeah, Kande, body language is super important eh.

Fairly good progress over the last week : calmer on the lunge, and really understanding the voice commands halt/walk/trot, and importantly slowing down when asked (small shake on the lunge line, and 'hoo, hoo' of the voice). Yesterday evening I stood him next to the mounting block and could jump up and down, put some weight on his back, and swing my foot on to his rump, and he didn't move! He showed a little bit of tension (head lifting), but stood still. Considering the first time I lifted my leg anywhere near him he practically teleported to the other side of the arena, I'm counting that as really solid progress.

So, happy new year everyone, may 2018 be a good one for us all :-)

Fergal.jpg
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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Sue B » Sat Jan 06, 2018 6:51 pm

Great news on Fergal progress! he has an adorable face, btw.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby Anne » Tue Jan 16, 2018 5:47 am

Continued progress with the young fella, though he's had some days off with weather and just other 'stuff'. Biggest success was that I swung a leg over him yesterday and sat on him. Keeping my upper body low for now, but he was quite unconcerned on the left side, bit more worried from the right, but still stood mostly still. Fed him lots of treats and he was just a good dude.

Proof (thanks Mum for taking pics)! :

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And I'm even going to be brave enough to put up a link to a short video of the right side effort, he's more worried but still a Good Boy.

https://vimeo.com/251254193

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby demi » Tue Jan 16, 2018 5:56 pm

Really nice to see! I am glad you were brave enough to post the vid. I enjoyed it.

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Re: Class of 2013?

Postby musical comedy » Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:50 pm

That is so impressive Anne. I could never have mounted a greenie bareback like that even when young. You are so flexible! Fergal is beautiful. Just my type with the smooth topline and round body. How tall is he? It is very difficult to find a Connemara/Tb cross for sale here in USA.


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