Australian Brumby Challenge ©
This week has seen a lot of rain, which resulted in my yards being flooded and Jack up to his hocks in mud! I had to make the call a little earlier than I had planned that he had to come out of the yard and into a small paddock which of course he is very happy with. Green grass – woo hoo!
Another busy week meant the time I spent with him was all about being able to approach him and rub him all over, remembering he is now in a paddock without a halter on. And just in case you were wondering, yes I will put the halter on him - when I no longer need to. I’m really happy with how much he is engaging with me in the rubs, often flexing to ‘check in’ or moving if he feels a little uncomfortable without stepping away.
We did do a bit of work on helping him to understand following my feel and yielding to pressure rather than trying to escape from it. So with a string around his neck I was asking for lateral flex and a forequarter step. As I had been asking for the flex already in my approach he got this pretty quickly and I even got a step across on his right side, which was nice. Not doing much hq yielding or backup just yet as he is already thinking ‘leave’ so I don’t want him thinking I’m asking him to leave. Most of my yields for now are to comfort, not away.
As a mental note for later on we’ve discovered his left side is his easy side and when he gets anxious he grinds his teeth.
This coming week we will be focusing more on our yields, helping him work thru being claustrophobic with pressure and I will aim to start working with the neck rope by the end of the week.