Australian Brumby Challenge ©
At the beginning of this week I spent time teaching Ariat to transition smoothly into the canter while being lunged. At this stage what I’m looking for in regards to his canter is just a smooth transition, I will eventually ask more of him but for now the main goal is the transition and teaching him that no fuss equals praise whereas reactions equals harder longer work.
I’m happy to say that this week Ariat was put right out of his comfort zone in regards to new people and working with them. Firstly he met my mate Jayden who he immediately took a liking to which everyone was surprised about as Jayden is male. Ariat was happy for him to pat over his face all the way down his back, he didn’t show the slightest sign of stress about having Jayden handle him which was a major achievement. Later in the week I also had my friend Jazz out, she has always been interested in horses so I thought it was time Ariat was worked by someone else and give her the chance to work with different horses. At first Ariat sought protection from me as he was quite wary of Jazz, but with some quick reassurance he relaxed and was happy to stand with her. Under instructions from me they were able to complete lateral flexion, disengage hind quarters, front leg cross overs and back up. Immediately Ariat could sense that jazz was inexperienced in this method of training so at times mixed signals were sent from her to him but he handled it extremely well and waited patiently until each activity was completed correctly.
As I’ve had multiple other commitments this week I was only able to ride Ariat twice this week. Our first ride was amazing, I had Ariat really extending on his trot in the circle and down the long length of the arena, along with keeping the trot at a smooth consistent pace. Unfortunately though our second ride for the week didn’t go as smoothly. I decided instead of doing arena work I’d take him out on a trail ride. As our ride progressed he began to appear quite forward and unresponsive. I decided to dismount to work him on the ground but as I was getting off he went to bite me which I’ve never allowed him to do so gave him a tap on the side of the mouth as a little sign for him to pull it together, but instead he overreacted and pulled the reins from my hands, I was able to easily catch him after this, gave him a minute to collect himself then remounted. It does sadden me to say this but he continued to play up and did pull the reins from my hand a second time.
For the rest of the week I spent time teaching Ariat that there is no need for such drastic reactions over such small things.