Australian Brumby Challenge ©
Watching the sun go down with Sansa on Friday marked the end of school holidays. The past two weeks have been a busy time at Tubbarubba, and has not left a lot of time for working Brumbies. The best part of school holidays however is that so many kids put in, to help build Sansas confidence with new people.
The value of brushing, scratching, leading, noodling, schooling and patting, from everyone who came down to help, can not be underrated. Until this week Sansa has only really been trained by myself, so I need to say a big thank you to everyone, as Sansa is now far less reactive to the differences in body language of others.
Week three and Sansa has finally developed an appetite for hard feed. Obviously wild Brumbies haven't grown up eating pellets and chaff. Until this week Sansa would not touch a bucket or feed.
At the start of the week I was noticing that Sansa was nibbling at the Breed and Grow I was leaving for her each night. So I decided to introduce her to Low GI cubes, that Kentucky Equine Research recommended, as part of our feeding program for the challenge.
Although the large pellets already have all of her required salts and minerals , I found that by adding some table salt to the first few feeds made Sansa take more notice.
Nigel and I have been jokingly pushing each other, as to who will saddle up, and ride first. While we joke around, Nigel is also very supportive and good at reminding me, that our training values and methods are what set our horses up for success. Riding Sansa before she understands the foundations will affect her later when we work on refinement and advancement.
The goal for next week will be to have Sansa work on the patterns and exercises while wearing gear. This is the next step to her education, adding gear is just another way of testing Sansas response to my cues. Whether the distraction is on her back or an object on the ground, the most important lesson is that Sansa looks to me for leadership when I introduce new things.
Photo Credit to Rupert Laycock Photography. Thank you for a fantastic shoot this week.