Yesterday, Steele and I worked on Trailer Loading. Obviously he's already had some work done to get here.
This is him on the trailer (either first or second time). The woman I bought him from introduced him to it:
I have a European trailer that is a bumper pull:
Steele: "hey, I thought this blog was about me, why are you going on about Irish?!"
I may be wandering off topic a bit. Sorry. Back to Steele.
My plan is for Steele to do the same. But Rome was not built in a day. And I own a trailer so I can take my time and get him used to it. There really is no excuse to not tackle this. A couple weeks or so ago I started but then found a wasp nest in the trailer so that ended that lesson.
Here's how I got rid of the wasp nest with no stings----
oops sorry about that. Where was I? Oh yes, loading. If you are going to ask a horse to defy all instinct and go into a small cave you better have a plan and you better be calm about the whole thing.
Last night I lowered the back and we spent about 20 minutes practicing walking up the ramp and then backing off. Each time he came farther in. I am using clicker training to work on this. He loves it and it really does simplify the issues. By the end he was walking on and backing off with absolutely no concern. It was easy. I gave him all the time he needed to sniff and walk around. I also asked him to stop before he thought he wanted to. I find that when horses are uncertain and you choose the moment of stopping rather then letting them do it, they are much more likely to move towards the object and things go much quicker. I think next time I will involve my husband to help close him in and get him used to that. Once he's calm about the whole thing I will work on the self loading.