' Wild To Wonderful '
Australian Brumby Challenge
Australian Brumby Challenge ©
This week was a little busy to say the least. I had a six day work week, had a few appointments after work and visited my parents in Inverloch to pick up a float load of hay. I still managed to spend some quality time with Solo and while I didn’t back him, had some amazing achievements!
Early in the week he was just as comfortable with me being on his off side as his near side, I could move around him faster and more abruptly than before, pat him all over his face and throw hay directly at his feet without him moving at all!
On Saturday after work I worked more on desensitizing him to me jumping around like a fool and he relaxed to it quickly. Late Saturday afternoon I did some work on him yielding his fore away from me as I mainly focused on encouraging him to yield in towards me and now I need to balance him out. This caused him to get quite uptight and when I started desensitizing him it was back to the beginning in terms of his reaction and how long it took him to come back down.
At the end of the day I was able to rug him and he was accepting of it without much fuss which is GREAT as it is so cold and even though he is like a woolly mammoth the extra protection from the weather will help increase his condition.
On Sunday I had planned to back him but when I arrived at the paddock he was snoozing and didn’t get up even when I entered the paddock. I thought I would see how close he would be comfortable with me getting before feeling the need to get up and he didn’t… at all. I was able to walk right up to him and he didn’t move! So instead of me backing him, I just spent some time chilling out with him and rubbed him all over from the ground. He even let me move around to his off side so I was ‘behind’ him and rub him all over from there too.
To say I was humbled that a horse that was wild just 43 days ago has enough trust in me to remain in such a vulnerable position totally unrestrained, is an understatement but I just don’t know how else to describe how he allowed me to feel. I am in such awe of this little horse and how far we are coming together.
This week we nailed lifting and holding both front feet, with his off side surprisingly being better than the near! Go figure! He also ate his first hard feed which made me do a little dance as we’ve tried a few different feeds and combinations and while he has inspected them all, he hasn’t eaten any till now! He accepted a friend of mine he hadn’t met before approach and touch him and I put him in a bigger paddock with a new paddock mate, Flicka (original I know).
During week 7 I aim to have him comfortable lifting and holding his back legs in time for the farrier who is coming on Saturday, do more sensitizing and desensitizing so getting him ‘up’ and ‘down’ are more balanced, teach him to tie and back him by the end of the week. If I feel he will be accepting of me backing him in the dark, when things are a little harder to see, I will do it earlier in the week, if not, I will wait till the weekend.