Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Trying to Get my Breeding Business Back on Track - Training Young Horses Part 2

Part 1

So now, the following year working the two young stallions, I immediately went back to the biting up. I wanted to see what I had left of my training from the year before. At first both horses were very naughty, and I do mean very! They were not happy with coming to a new barn to work.

Each Arabian horse fought giving to pressure, screamed, stomped and bucked. Something I had seen at home the year before only briefly. The first few times I worked them, both horses were a sweaty mess before we were done. I wouldn't stop until they had begun to listen to me and work quietly.

About the time I thought I was getting things under control, Reflection began coughing. While, just like the horses at home, the horse never did get a fever, he had an awful deep cough and a horse size snotty nose. Although he wasn't happy about it, he was restricted to standing in his stall and hand walking out in his paddock.

Storm on the other hand seemed to be holding his own. Even so, I backed off on the work afraid that I would stress him and push him into something. I continued to work him by biting him up but I refrained from adding more pressure as the horse progressed. I just wanted to maintain what I had achieved to this point.

Two weeks into it, Storm got sick too. So then I stopped all work with him as well. This horse, too, was on stall rest and hand walks in his paddock.

By this time, it looked like the cough at home was gone so I brought Legs and Vee over to get some work done on them. Neither had shown any signs of illness and both were in need of a job.

The two oldest Legs' daughters(Vee and Dare) are green broke but that is as far as it has gotten. During a trip over to the park to ride, some insensitive people decided to "teach" a frightened horse how to deal with people in the aluminum stands by stomping loudly. They not only frightened their horse even further but they managed to terrify my two young horses as well. That's an issue that I knew was going to take some special effort to deal with and 'life" just kept getting in the way.

So now looked like a good time to get going with Vee. She can be such a nervous horse since that frightening incident that I thought I would bring her over to the farm and let her settle in before I began riding again. And Legs, well, if I don't get going on Legs I'm never going to get him out in the ring. He's dead broke but never been worked consistently enough to build up the muscle required for a competitive western pleasure horse.

All the while I'd continued to work with Dandy and Rachel and had begun ground work on Scandalous Hope. By the time Vee was ready to begin working, I was ready to begin long lining Hope as well.

Once Reflection and Storm were both over their colds, I began adding them into the mix. They actually had settled down some being bitted up and I was ready to begin long lining them as well. Each horse might start out a bit fresh and even throw a bit of a temper tantrum about me having control but it didn't seem that big a deal. I always ended with a responsive submissive horse. With a couple of weeks of long lining and the clinic under our belt, I was ready to get on a couple of these young horses.

Last weekend was a long weekend for Rachel. She had a teachers in service day on Friday and then with Veteran's Day on Monday that made for a four day weekend. I figured that was a good stretch of time to take advantage of having help on the ground.

The first day Colleen was there so I had her hold horses while I climbed on them. I had been on Hope one day in her stall a couple of weeks back and had spent several sessions putting weight in the stirrups etc. It hadn't even seemed to phase her so I decided to get up on her too.

We started with her and she was good.While she seemed confused, she didn't seem stressed or worried. We started off with Colleen walking right next to her. Then Colleen moved toward the middle and we walked in a circle around her. We turned into Colleen and changed directions several times. Hope stayed calm and easy through it all.

From there we went on to Reflection and Storm. We repeated the same thing with both of them. Both horses acted like they remembered everything we had done before. After a little while on the line, I had Colleen turn me loose and we continued to work at the walk around her.

I moved them off of my legs and worked on flexing and bending. Other than Reflection shaking his head at me, they were good. Every time he tried to pull the reins out of my hand, I responded with equal pressure taking the rein back. By the end of the session he seemed to be just fine.

To be continued.........

OK, this is it, the next post is the session that ended in my wrecks. The Fall I'm doing better but still very sore. Have slept nearly all day yesterday and today both. But the result is I'm feeling a lot better. Will try to do some things tomorrow, we'll see how that goes.

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  1. Hope you're feeling better. Not too battered and bruised.

  2. I am still trying to turn my head around your blog and to figure out what happens when but it's a very interesting read:) I hope you will feel better soon - those youngsters sound rather feisty.
    What shows exactly do you want them to go to? (sorry, not know much about showing Arabians!).

  3. Glad you're feeling a lot better! That's wonderful to hear! :D

  4. MiKael - How do you do it? So many horses, so little time! I've got two horses and a kid and I'm always feeling swamped. It's great to read your blog. Hope that you'll check out mine. I just started it. "Teachings of the Horse" at victoriacummings.blogspot.com.

  5. Sheesh MiKael you are going to keep us in more suspense (although with our time difference I normally only get to read your posts the day after you have posted them).

    I hope you had a better day today, mine was blaaah again LOL, nothing exciting.

    (((Hugs))) and get better soon.


  6. ro, I don't even want to think about how sore I've been. lol

    wiola, I'm sorry that my blog is difficult as far as when stuff happens. Most is now except for the Baby Boomer stuff. That is all the history of how I got started.

    equinespirit. TY it's been hard to be down.

    victoria, welcome to the blogosphere. I checked out your blog, it's nice to have a new horse blog, there aren't nearly enough.

    lori, sorry, it's just a built in with me. As for the days, I'm having my ups and downs. lol