Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Tanka is conquering his fears

Tanka time - I feel like Tanka and I are having a bit of a break through moment around here.
I was super worn out yesterday so I took Tanka to the round pen, I took his halter off and just sat for awhile. Then, I put a carrot on top of a grocery bag and Tanka edged his way up to it and took the carrot. And the bag. I had to get the bag back from him )
I had a toy truck on a string and I walked around the outside of the pen with it. Then, I raised it up and let it dangle from the rail. Tanka followed me the whole way and then played with the truck.
I took a friend's suggestion and put a cone on Tanka's back. I left him in the pen and stepped out. The cone eventually fell off and Tanka was a bit startled. I did it again and the second time it was fine.
I took an old sheet and put it above my head in the wind. It flapped and moved. Tanka was fine. I had Tanka touch it, I rubbed him with it and then I put it over his back. I left it on the ground and Tanka explored it, scared himself just a bit when he moved it with his foot and then he sniffed it again.
I let a grocery bag dangle in the wind from the top rail. Then I let it go and it blew across the round pen. Tanka said no problem.
I spent a lot of time on the top rail of the round pen. Tanka is finding the whole deal much more acceptable. He hung out with me and he stepped towards me when asked.
We just played and he did pick it up several times. We pushed the ball. I rubbed on him. We relaxed and watched the neighbor get in his driveway. The neighbor and I waved and hollered hi.
Hubby walked out to the round pen and Tanka looked curious instead of fearful.
Tanka took carrots from Hubby and Hubby was sitting on top of the rail of the round pen! The first carrot I ended up holding with Hubby before Tanka would take it. Then, four or five carrots, Tanka took right from Hubby's hand.
I finished up by putting his halter on and taking Tanka down the driveway. I asked him to stop and back a few steps and move forward a few steps when he started getting a bit high headed.
Hubby walked out of the garage when I took Tanka down the driveway and Tanka did not startle! We all hung out together and Tanka sniffed the big truck and Hubby's hands.
I feel like we are getting there and that we are almost at a tipping point in Tanka's learning process where learning is taking precedence over fear.

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