Saturday, February 28, 2009

Bareback hoorah!

Today I took Chickadee out for some playtime to find another horse under-saddle in the arena (our friend the LBI blue roan draft mare)...very distracting for little Chicka!! We did a bit of Friendly just with the carrot stick (she started a time or two but never moved her feet) before taking on the Yo-Yo to catch her attention a little better. She kept watching the other mare in the arena and wanted to ignore the game however she still did alright (Phase 1 and 2 for the most part). Her Porcupine was Phase 1 and 2 except the odd time she felt like walking off to visit - when I increased the pressure though she started moving around pretty nicely. I did not use the carrot stick for the Driving game today and she responded very lightly. Although our Circling game was good, we didn't try any extensions because I felt she was too distracted to succeed - next time! Her Sideways was much better today though we still did it three times on each side to try to cement it further for next time. Squeeze...we'll try next time over some barrels when she is not so excited lol. Her Figure-8 and Weave patterns at the walk on the 12' line today were great as usual! She was so calm and LB though (I think particularly since there was another horse in the arena) that I thought I'd do a bit of bareback work to get her further used to being under-saddle. The first time I jumped up a little too quick, all the movement seemed to scare her a bit and, in addition, I think my leg swished over her rump as I threw my leg over as well. She deeked off, threw in a little buck, and went completely RB on me. I jumped off, landing on one knee (ouch!) and she quickly calmed down again. We tried again (first hopping up and down next to her on either side before mounting up) and this time she was much calmer. I wiggled around up there over her back quite a bit on each side before finally sitting up. We just did a little maneuvering around but mostly I just wanted her to be comfortable with my being up there, so we sat and relaxed quite a bit. After a few moments I dismounted to end on a good note. Overall she did pretty well, especially with the added distraction of another horse in the arena!

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