Today, we had a very proud fur mommy moment and actually acted like we like each other for the first time in a while! Jean Luc, I’ve learned has some rather weird, (dare I say aggressive?) food habits that drive me insane, but I THINK we are starting to understand one another. (More to come about crazy aggressive food observations in a later post.)
Today, we tried a few new lessons I have put off to the side for winter work. There’s something to be said for patience AND the art of proper body movement. A trainer I found online is named Gary Lane. He really seems to know how to combine modern movement lessons, like those used in Dressage, with a gaited horse’s natural build. Gary Lane’s gaited horse techniques are short, easy, effective, and something we found success with on the first try. Most gated horse trainers would never tell you to have a horse trot over polls because it goes against the gate. However, Gary encourages this to help a horse with their natural carriage and build strength. Trotting over poles for the win!
The first few times John Luke knocked into every pole, but as I moved them closer, something I’d never tried, he was able to understand proper reach. About 1 1/2 feet apart was perfect for him to start lifting his leg up under him and really learn to stretch out. We kept our lesson very short. He responded better to walking over the pole, stop, praise. I know people recommend it all the time but after today I am a firm believer in praise, praise, praise!
What I did not know about Jean Luc was the fact that, for him praise means stopping. I mean, not like a slow down then let’s go again. I mean a full stop, count to 10 then move kind of reward. He also doesn’t like to repeat things once he has found success at them. He would prefer to do something right two or three times and then stop so that he knows he has been successful in his lesson. I tested this by coming back to things we started in the beginning of our lesson today. Sure enough, he retained the work. For future planning this just means I will need to have a very organized instruction set up prior to any work that we do if I want it to be the most effective for us.
Hopefully, in the coming weeks I can take a video. His before and after movements are impressive even to my untrained eye.
I truly want to muscel Jean-Luc up so that his gait will be easier for him. Any advice is welcome.
My name is Chelsey.
Generator's Cuevo Gold, or as he's known around this barn, "Jean-Luc Ponycard", was foaled in 2004 from Generator's Hurricane & Cheyenne's Little Bit.
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