Saturday, April 4, 2009

April 3, 2009

We met at the stables and continued lead work. We worked in the practice arena for a bit without any incidences. We ventured down to the main arena and LBR was perfectly behaved. He watched as the caretaker turned out the stalled horses to their paddocks for the night.

We ventured to the stables and LBR walked in/out several times. He hesitated once when the cats (aka horse eating felines) played around the entrance. It's funny because he is perfectly behaved when the stable dogs play around/under him. We guess he's never been around cats.

He hesitated to go down a slope in the stables towards the stalls so we didn't force the issue. He also didn't like the grooming stall rubber mats, but stepped on them anyway.

After this long exercise (about 1 1/2 hours) we headed back to the paddock. We let him graze for a bit in the common area. When we were ready to leave, LBR would not go back into his paddock. He would just "freeze" about 10 feet from the open gate. We finally experienced his "stubborn" streak. No amount of circles or leading would get him closer.

We had two (2) options...force the issue with the lunge whip or use a treat for encouragement. Because we had such a good lesson in the barn, we chose the treat. Gary led him in by keeping a treat in his lead hand. We worked for about 15 more minutes in the paddock and LBR was once again the perfectly behaved horse. The only thing we can figure was we opened the gate fully as opposed to opening it a few feet wide (like we have done previously).

After taking the halter off, LBR followed Gary and halted/walked on queue. Excellent progress.

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