Midas and Pokey had a visit by Paddy today, who made note that Midas’ hooves were “quite marvelous”. He also stood pretty patiently, only offering a couple intimidating nibbles. A marked improvement since the first trimming, of which he would be a pita with one of the hooves at least. Pokey was a great old guy (of course) and while he was getting his trim a very gusty storm ensued! It was so strong that rain was coming in through the wooden barn walls. I think because of all the tropical weather in the oceans are strongly affecting the weather here, as lately it has been very windy and cloudy. That being said, Midas has been a pretty good boy and though he is still spooking – it is slight. It has improved over the past couple days, so I will go with the train of thought that he is a horse that needs to be worked consistently. The past two days he tested me by refusing to open his mouth for the bit, despite prolonged aggravated tickling of the tongue! In fact, I think by his expression (he could barely keep his eyes open at one point) that he may have even liked it. However, I proved to be a worthy adversary to his annoyance tolerance, and both times he eventually accepted it. Today he didn’t even bother, hah!
No lunge work today, I hate doing it but I sometimes need to remind him I’m calling the shots, and he has been a little fresh. Today after his trim I tacked him up and got on instead of lunging, took him around the round pen and headed off down the property. I try to make sure that when I’m working him that he is moving with a purpose – energy. He is kind of lazy but I think once he gets more fit he may be more willing to move out. Frosty the miniature horse scared him, but not terribly so, but I decided to dismount. We were approaching an area where he usually is spooky (though I have been lunging him there lately to get him used to it) and I felt better tackling it on the ground. He was very well behaved, he was popping his shoulder out at me passing a long bed trailer and each time he did that I made him halt. Back, and push his shoulder away from me. It brought his attention back to me (and not on the “scary object”) and also showed him that I would not allow him to enter my space and disregard me so. In short order we passed by it with no issue. I am glad to say that he walks through water no problems. I lead him up the center of the first half of the property, in between the two largest pastures. Horses from each side nickered and came up to see him, naturally, he had to act “Mr. Studly”. His eyes immediately lit, the ears pricked forward, nostrils flared, head raised, poll bent, neck arched, and FLOATED at the walk. Clearly, he is a show off. But he never once pulled on the reins or attempted to deviate our distance. I walked him around the front of of the property onto a dirt road and took a grassy trail bordering the other side back. I lead him back through the “scary area” with zero issue, and back to the barn. I got back on him and rode him around the round pen, his halt is excellent. He knows by the weight of my seat when to halt, and he does it squarely every time (just as good on the lunge too). He is however not completely accepting of the bit, but I just maintain a light contact despite where he puts his head. He is getting the concepts of leg pressure, albeit in spurts. I think he is being stubborn some of the time, which I expected. I did have him trot at the end of our session which went well. I desperately need new riding boots as the bottom of my western ones are SLICK which is near useless in an iron, even something cheapie at Wal Mart would be better.
Sitting the rest of this tropical depression day away. Tomorrow I will look to investing in a longer bungee cord and boots, and would like to spend the majority of our session riding. I think I’m going to start stretching him before every ride, as he loved it when Paddy did it. I also need to get the hole punch from my mom to adjust his boots, and maybe I can even find some ground poles at the barn. Until then!