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Alera Waite
Apr 20, 2022
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Journal Enteries
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Alera Waite
Apr 20, 2022
April Journey Entry- Fiona(previously Angie) is progressing nicely. We moved her to another pasture that had better grass. The first session we had after moving her, she was not super committed(didn’t want to fully yield hindquarter, didn’t want to trot, braced instead of backed up…) but after a couple little reminders she remembered how she should act. We’ve been refining the basics; tipping head in for haltering/turnout, standing still, lunging with less “encouragement“, backing up lightly in straight lines and in circles, yielding hind and forequarters softly, getting used to multiple people grooming, different people leading, and not taking an extra step forward when I stop. We are working on side passing towards and away from me. Last night I trailered her for the first time. She hoped right in, but was nervous, and spooked when closing the divider, so we will definitely be working on relaxing in there. I lunged her and walked her around when we got to the arena, then tied her at the trailer. She danced around and pawed a little bit, but it wasn’t bad. After about 30 minutes, when she was standing more calmly, I untied her and walked her around, then wanted to brush her at the trailer, but she still didn’t want to stand still, so I lunged her away from the trailer, then she stood nicely at the trailer while I brushed her. I walked her to the arena, I was amazed at how calm she was for it being her first time. We did a couple circles, walked around some more, and then we loaded up and went home. We are going to a show this weekend, so I am going to take her and do some in hand classes for experience. I’m curious to see how she does with the bathing and show prep. We have a couple ideas for the freestyle, but not much of a plan.
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Journal Enteries
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Alera Waite
Oct 23, 2021
October Journal Entry on Angie Week 1- We worked on leading, “woah”, and backing. She was okay with these things unless she felt like doing them would cause her to feel weakened or like anything except for the boss. Freely moving her feet in her pen (a 50’ x 50’ turnout) was ineffective, as there are corners, other horses on the other side of one fence line, and she would frequently turn her butt towards us, regardless off how much we discouraged it. We tried lunging on a lunge line, only to realize that she would only go one direction (left) at one speed (trot). All efforts to get her to stop were completely ineffective. I got her to switch directions one time, but that turned into her trying to run over me. I had to continue lunging her for 2 hours until my mom got home so that I could work on getting her to stop with supervision in case she got nasty about it again. Eventually I just had to slowly shorten the lunge line until she was close enough to halter. She was a little slow to pick up her feet, and very tight/sensitive with her hind legs. When tied up, she would paw intensely. I let her stand until she was done pawing, then untied her. After a few sessions of that, she was done pawing and stands tied pretty nicely. Week 2- We worked on lunging, but on a shorter rope, and with more of a “sending” technique, so that I could keep her more checked in. We worked on yielding her hind quarters which involved her kicking out, trying to run over me, and lots of pinned ears. After a while, she realized that it is something that she has to do and that it’s much easier to do it nicely the first time then to fight it. Moving out of my space has been a big challenge, but after tons of backing, yielding, etc, she is realizing that when I move into her space with purpose, she needs to move out of my way. My personal space is not something that she respected, although she does highly value her own personal space, lol. Her being prepared to back up two steps every time we stop walking is something we have been diligent in doing, I think she is slowly catching on, but it is hard for her since it requires her voluntarily moving away from me. Week 3- We finally got a round pen, which is by far the best tool for working with her. When we work in the round pen, she normally focuses on me, and what she should be doing. If she does get lazy or careless and decides to turn out for a direction change, or doesn’t come in to me when asked, a couple extra rounds seems to remind her pretty quickly that listening isn’t so bad. We have worked with flags, tarps, pool noodles, all kinds of things and she does not seem to be scared of much. I think that her boss mare attitude, thus not wanting to show weakness is the primary reason that she does not show much fear of things. This character trait has been very interesting to work with. Week 4- I have had 2 different horsewomen work with her. Both used very different approaches, and initially got very different results. The first lady was more stern and sort of ‘matched Angie’s aggression/attitude’. Angie was very defensive, and it took a while for her to peacefully do each maneuver(she was just being asked to do basic/essential tasks). The second lady took a very calm, and more friendly approach. She kindly asked Angie to back up, yield hind quarters, yield forequarters, etc(same things that first lady worked with her on) and Angie did them well. The second lady ‘asked’ Angie, instead of ‘telling’ her. After seeing Angie’s significantly different responses to the different approaches, I have been working with her on more of a friendship, and mutual respect. We have discovered that most of Angie’s aggression is displayed when we work in her pen, and that she is most mellow in the round pen. We are trying to build on the positives, and hope that if we progress in a few big areas, the smaller(yet seemingly huge) things will be easier to work through once her foundation is more firm.
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Alera Waite
Sep 30, 2021
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