Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New Woods and Trails

Today as I went to Jeeps' and Casey's paddock I thought about asking permission. I was loaded up with halters and leads, carrot stick, muck buckets and rake. Of course when I got there I found that they had just been hayed. I called to them, "just the cleaning lady", and proceeded to pick the paddock. The shed was a mess, clearly they had spent the night inside. I dragged on full bucket out of the paddock and then went back. I opened the gate and looked at where and how they were standing. Far side from gate, heads down in the hay, rear end facing the gate. Hmmmm.

I had Jeeps' halter and lead and my carrot stick as I walked a few steps into the paddock. Not even a flicker of an ear. So I bend down and selected a small stone. I have never tried this before. But I'm thinking of Pat from the Celebration. When I stand up to aim for a throw Jeepers lifted her head and looked at me. Permission! She watched as I walked up to her and haltered her.

We play squeeze game out the gate cause I am not bringing Casey with us. So gate isn't opened very far, Jeeps just walks out and we head for the trails. Grass is sprouting everywhere and the temptation is too great for her. So lots of disengagements to get moving.

I find that I now look at the woods and trails with totally new eyes. Where can we stop and back up? Where is there enough room for circles? Disengagements? Yo-Yo? The hills are now a place to run up and then do a little backing down. There are two tress close together that I've always ridden between. Now I play the yo-yo game between them. Found even more logs to step over. Its a whole new place!

By the time we head back and Jeeps is tempted once again by the grass I just look at her hind end and she walks on. We hear Casey calling for her and she picks up the pace. I ask for slower. LOL! She is soft and she is with me.

When we get back I give her her Speedi-beet and since it is now raining put Casey's halter on and play softly with him in the shed while she eats. This keeps him focused on me and not begging for food. The quieter I am the softer he is. There is that mirror again. Hmmmm.

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