|I threw this tree into the field- Carmen came right up to it and is|
now giving me the 'eye'.
I have been super impressed by how easy she's been to give her the tube of Omeprazole. I put on her halter now and she starts to chew getting ready. I put it next to her mouth and after an initial moving away she opens her mouth and lets me squirt it all in and then she gulps it down. I don't even have to hold her anymore. I was worried that it would make her resent me but the opposite seems to be happening. On Saturday I came into the field with some flakes of hay and she came galloping and nickering to me. Clearly the hay helped but I've done that before and have not gotten that reaction.
It took until this weekend for me to finally start to feel like myself. Friday was bitterly cold and every time I went out I bundled up. Saturday was cold and rainy so I just puttered around the house and didn't worry about working Carmen. Sunday though was a beautiful fall day.
|love my morning walks in my woods|
And you guys- she was a totally different horse. There was no sign of this nervous, flinching wreck from two weeks ago.
|trying out her new rope halter.|
C'mon Carmen put your ears forward and open your eyes
|does this look right?|
Also, Carmen put your ears up
|Me: Carmen, I'm taking your photo. Could you put your ears up?|
Carmen: why? I'm relaxed. what more do you want?
One of the things I've learned about ground work this year is that it's not so much what you ask for - it's about the handler being really clear with what she wants and the horse trying to find the answer. I like playing with my body language and seeing how she responds. We walked around the ring with her following. I decided to see if I could push her away and draw her back by just rotating my shoulders. It worked like a dream. As I walked and turned my shoulders towards her she yielded into the centre and when I turned my shoulder back and headed toward the rail she followed. At no time did I have to tug on the lead. We ended there.
Irish has had his nose a bit out of joint. He's used to being the one that needs the extra care but I've been giving that to Carmen. He's getting quite grumpy. Today I took him out to clean off his back legs and then put on the protective spray/powder. It was clear that he felt much better after. Poor baby.
I am feeling so much more optimistic than I was earlier this month. I have a lesson booked for Tuesday (fingers crossed for good weather). I plan to keep it positive and light but it will be good to have eyes on the ground.
I don't expect her to lose all her sass. After all she wouldn't be Carmen then. But I like the path we seem to be on.