Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Falling snow

Notice when I get to the barn this morning that Cici is standing at the fence line with Cheeta. The girls are chatting. I check to see if she has been fed yet and M says that she was fed in her shed a while ago. But if she was fed why is she standing outside in the drizzling rain?

I gather all my stuff in the indoor, saddle, bridles, ropes, barrels and cones. And then I head to the paddock. Cici is still at fence but comes over to me, very interested in food. I walk into the shed and find three flakes of hay untouched!

The warmer weather and rain is causing today's earlier snow of more than an inch of wet snow slide. And there is snow falling off the roofs everywhere. Cici is not happy. Head up and big eyed. And I was thinking about riding today.

I show Cici the hay and then walk back into the shed and she follows. She grabs a bite and I go back outside to see if I can't shovel the path into the shed. Just the sound of striking the snow shovel into the snow causes Cici to book out of the shed. Thankfully she doesn't run me over, she avoids me and runs through the deep snow, almost falling in the process.

I bring the hay out of the shed and let her and Casey eat. This is breakfast! She needs her strength. After a while eating I halter her and she leads the way up the path to the indoor. Great chance to work on driving from Zone 5.

In the indoor she is really head up and whites of eyes showing. She is listening and watching for falling snow. I really bring up my energy to match hers and to have her listen to me. Lots of backing, sidesways with and without the wall, figure 8s and change of direction. Have the barrels out and she flies over them.

Circling game is a challenge and she wants to leave. And then she scares herself and runs into me and puts her head in my chest. Do lots of change of direction every few steps and she starts to see this as a pattern and change before I ask. Hmm how interesting.

Notice that backing matching her energy is effective. Lots of licking and chewing. On the circle when she spooks and takes off I ask her to keep moving her feet and she is circling and her tongue goes in and out. Finally ask her in and get a huge sigh from her, more licking and final lowering of her head.

I had planned on saddling her and riding, but realize there is more snow yet to fall. Call it a day.

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