Australian Brumby Challenge ©
VBA Lark Week 6:
Despite some wicked winds this week we managed to take some huge steps.
After careful consideration Lark graduated to the big girls paddock. So she now lives in 30 acres with 12 other mares and fillies. We have a very carefully balanced herd here at Black Pearl Horses HQ. A lot of you will have experienced the nerve wrecking moment of introducing your new horse to the herd, biting nails as they go tearing around the paddock. We can’t afford to have that happen here as we have client horses regularly coming in and out. So by keeping the herd calm and mentally balanced we have maintained an open mindset that welcomes new additions. We also have a couple of basic rules, there is no fighting near humans and if you want to say hi to the horse I am holding you must say hi to me first.
It was positively beautiful to watch such a polite young lady as Lark introduce herself to the herd and be received so openly. The tricky part of all this is of course the re catch, I wasn’t so worried about Lark being willing to be caught more that some of the younger girls can be over eager for their turn, which can be intimidating. Try walking towards a scared new horses with 4 keen as mustard buddies behind you. Lark has been awesome though by willingly walking out of the herd towards me she has made it all too easy.
On the horses birthday I finally felt Lark was ready to progress to the next step, so we lined her up to a convenient log and slid a leg over, yay! We repeated the on off game both sides for a bit asked for a step back and a step forward and called it a day. We’ve since repeated the exercise twice with success.
I’m very much taking these early rides one step at a time, as with Larks ground work I know she will move forward happily and willingly when she feels safe to do so. Pushing her now is just begging for something to go wrong. Weirdly enough I actually hold no fear that Lark will buck or do anything particularly dangerous, I am much more concerned that I will cause her to lose this carefully built trust.
Overall I’m really happy with how Lark is going, she is approaching every new session with a positive attitude and hanging around the gate after training seemingly disappointed to be finished. With this attitude in place and all our cues getting clearer everyday, I’m already starting to get a bit ahead of myself and plan some fun outings together.
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