Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Kick ass driving session!

I lied yesterday. I did end up going to the barn precisely because it was raining. Bobby's been being babied with his turnout to keep his precious toes dry, so he had to stay in yesterday. Homie don't play that game. I got to the barn and he was showing his distaste at jail time by letting loose his shrill princess whinny every time a horse went by. I ended up riding him for nearly an hour because he was being so good. Counter canter, leg yields, shoulder in, lengthenings--all there for the taking. He was probably trying to tell me he would be a good baby dressage horse from now on as long as I didn't hook him back up to the cart.

Tough luck, Bobby!

getting to graze after yesterday's ride. 
BM and I went back up to the outdoor today after doing the barn and I ground drove Bobby while she made a phone call. We worked on doing tiny figure eights before I asked him to halt. It was like I asked him to stand there and get eaten alive by fucking sharks. I went to his head and backed his ass up to the next county since he likes doing it so fucking much. Then I parked him in the corner and made him stand there for several minutes. I finally picked up the lines again and sent him off, making him stop and stand without picking up a single hoof every five steps. After that, he was ready to be handed over to BM.

BM took over and did something to horribly offend Bobby. Who knows what it was. She probably blinked one too many times. I mean, really. It was a completely uncalled for tantrum and BM went after him for it. That, of course, pissed him off even more and they had their own go-round before getting back on level ground.

Things were not looking up for cart time at this point, and then his girth broke. BM dug up two more--one too small, and the other one whose buckles were too small to fit in the straps of the saddle. So I went down and borrowed Artie's fancy girth and, ten minutes later, we were back in business. BM worked with him a little more without any monumental blowups and we were ready for hitching.

being good for bm.
Once again, zero problems getting him hitched. He really could care less about the cart being back there. I hooked up to his halter and we went off at the walk. He lasted about halfway around the ring this time before throwing a fit. I caught him just as he went to spin, BM was ready for his tricks, and between the two of us we got his head straightened back out and kept him immobile. With that option gone, his wheels started turning on how he could get out of work this time.

His front legs slowly started to buckle and he went halfway down. BM and I just stood there and let him crouch in this obviously uncomfortable position for as long as he wanted. The split second his shifted to stand back up, BM asked him to walk on and he got huge praise when he did. See, Bobby? Isn't walking way more fun than being a dick?

We kept telling him what a good boy he was all the way around and he didn't try any naughtiness. Once in awhile he would stop and look like he was going to try something, but we'd let him stand there and praise him like he was doing exactly what we wanted before asking him to walk on again. This worked so well for him. Was he being a little bit of a brat by stopping when he wasn't supposed to? Yes. But because we weren't fighting him over it, he was totally willing to walk on when asked again.

Eventually, things were going so well that we stopped to pick up a passenger BM named Cooper--one of the tires used as fill for jumps. Bobby stood like a rock as BM threw Cooper in the cart and then walked right off when asked. We repeated the praise for halting when he stopped and more praise when he walked on and he didn't once throw a fit. After two laps each way with Cooper catch riding, we ditched our passenger and Bobby trotted right off with his lighter load.

We ended on that note and got him unhitched, driven back down to the barn, and halted in front the barn doors without him dancing around. Smart pony!

We're definitely going to do it again tomorrow, and he'll get Friday off for sure. Pony Pants has worked hard this week!

7 comments:

  1. I'm so envious of your opportunity! I want to teach Psycho Mare to drive!

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    1. I am soooo lucky to have all this killer driving stuff (people included!) to work with!

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  2. Way to go Bobby! I've found that everything goes so much better if there is no fighting involved, though the occasional smack may be needed!

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    1. It's hard not to engage in a fight when "someone" (coughlargebrownhorsecough) is throwing themselves on the ground or trying to back a cart over you. But we didn't let his theatrics get that far today and we were all much happier for it!

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  3. I am jealous too of yours and Bobby's driving talents!! I can't wait to see you riding in a cart with him pulling! :)

    I'd love to know what he's thinking about all this change in work type! haha!

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  4. What a good boy :) Glad hes doing so well recently.

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  5. Lol, sometimes Bobby acts like some bitchy ladies at work who are just *looking* to argue over something (anything!). Kill 'em with kindness and simply don't take the bait to argue! Hehehe

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If you can't say anything nice, fuck off.