Saturday, December 10, 2016

Training with Tanka

A training update on Tanka.
I have worked with Tanka just a little bit for the last week due to schedule and weather. Then on Thursday I had a chance to work with him and it went so-so. Not sure why but figured "Hey, at least I am out there trying."
The trainer came on Friday [yesterday] and I so enjoyed it.
I brushed him and worked on his mane a bit. Picked up his front feet and half cleaned them out. Picked up his rear feet. I call that progress.
He was on the lead line and I asked him to walk out on the lead line although not right next to me which has been confusing for him. I want him to move away from me sideways and then ask him to walk while on the rope. I upped the pressure by twirling the end of the rope behind his drive line and he got a bit reactive but then slowed to a walk. Did that several times in each direction. I think he is getting the concept.
Then, the trainer arrived.
First, I worked with Tanka on the lead line. We got started and I mentioned the whip scaring him recently so we worked on that. I pet him the whip until he made a change. Change doesn't seem to mean cocking a leg or chewing necessarily. He flicked an ear forward or started his lips quivering. Pet the other side.
Then, walking with the whip in front tapping the ground from side to side. Then, swirling the whip toward the front half. See a change, other side. Then, swirling the whip in a circle more towards the rear [not real close to horse] This got him a little reactive and moving but I went with him. He calmed down. Then, did the other side. Back to petting.
I have a large play ball and she says "Kick it with your foot gently and say push it" We did that and had the horse follow it. After awhile, Tanka was nibbling it while I said "Push it" and he almost started pushing it. We used it as a tool to gently kick up against his front legs and that did not bother him.
Did some free lunging. Got the horse to walk, trot and canter. Whoa was awesome. He turned to face me and then I would point, say "Turn" "Walk" and he did so good. Trainer said excellent job at being a clear leader:)
Finally, she got the bridle out and started putting it near his face taking it away, then up his face taking it away, then a rope in his mouth and the bridle going further up. Let the horse spit out the rope with a little help. Then, messing with his ears in preparation for the bridle going on. More rope in the mouth like a bit. Let him chew on it and then take it out by helping him bring it down and then letting him spit it out. Eventually, bridle on with rope in mouth like bit.
Tanka did really well. The trainer said that Tanka was so connected and paying attention to me.

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