I'm on another horse forum, nd on it I mentioned that some of my goals for 2010 are to retrain my mare a little bit.
Basically, what I want to do with her is:
1. Teach Her To Flex - she has a shorter, thicker neck and can lock it in place... she flexes only when she feels like is and braces against me when she does.
2. Give Her Brakes - her 'whoa' is almost nonexistant... when she wants to, she will duck her head to where her hackamore isn't effective and run away... she loves to run and will fight me when I go to stop her and her brakes just aren't good, period.
3. Teach Her To Move Off Leg Cues - she is completely immune to leg cues... she absolutely doesn't do them at all...
Anyway, my best friend read what I wrote and wrote me, asking if I'd allow her to 'retrain' my mare. I'm not really clear on why she suddenly wants to work with my girl... my friend hasn't even been on my mare's back in about five years, and suddenly she wants to train her to flex and stop on cue easily for me... I'm a little suspiscious, and I feel bad about it... but I can't help it... it's just a bit... odd.
Her words when she asked me (she asked me via internet) were "I have a question for you... Would you consider letting me retrain Gypsie for you since I have a roundpen and you don't and you're working more with Dakota (my three and a half year old gelding) and not riding or working with Gypsie that much lately? I could teach her 'whoa' and how to flex properly."
I wrote her back and asked why she wanted to when she has a gelding she's trying to teach respect to and a 'spazzy' six month pregnant mare and another pregnant pony mare who she works with every now and then.
Her reply was: "I don't know. I just got the urge to ask. So, would you? I would need to bring her here. You would still be able to see her whenever you want, since you live only three miles from me. I might see you more too, since I'll be holding your horse 'prisoner'."
I wrote her back and told her that if she really wanted to, then she could try... because it may be good for Dakota to not have Gypsie around for a while... He's very attached to her, though they both ride without the other very easily... I just wish he wasn't such a 'titti-baby'.
She wrote my back and told me that she wanted to and it'll probably be the next week or so before she comes and gets Gypsie, because she wants the rain to clear up before she introduces Gypsie to her herd. She said she doesn't know how long she'll keep her... three weeks or so, probably longer if I'm willing to supply feed, which I am as I have one-hundred and fifty pounds of feed for my two in the barn, plus extra and my horses only get one pound of a soaked Alfalfa and Oats mixture a day. My friend also said that her only condition for doing this is she wants me to start riding with her at least once a week again. We used to ride together all the time and after she moved, we kinda... quit. (I knew she had an ulterier motive!)
Anyway, my real question is.. does this sound like a fairly good idea... I'm almost twenty, so is my friend. I can easily say that this girl is my absolute best friend and I'd trust my life with her. If I couldn't afford my horses, I'd give them to her before anyone else. I trust her, plain and simple. She's also good with horses and has helped to train a few, like me. She's dealt with spazzes and such more than I have, as my horses are laid back and her main riding mare is a 'nutcase' (and she's worked with other 'nutcase' horses before). She helped me 'retrain' my cousins mare from a 'dangerous' horse to one that my twelve year old cousin rides after her mind was 'ruined' by abusive riders/trainers. We've both dealt with buckers, kickers, biters, green horses, and completely untrained horses and turned them into nice/fairly nice trail horses.
I have faith that she can do this with my mare if she has the time... plus, my mare isn't a spaz, nor is she disrespectful or very unpredictable... and it would really give me some more time to work with my gelding without distractions... so I'm liking the idea more and more... but I want you more experienced horse-persons advice. The only thing I'm worried about is that my girl is (was?) a bucker (up until we fell the other month, my girl bucked a few times on every ride... but after we fell and she healed and was put back into work, she hasn't even offered to buck, though I've given her plenty of chances) and is slightly gun-shy and we do have a lot of hunters out here (though she's gotten much better about it and doesnt really freak out and go nuts anymore).
Here's a pic of my girl:
Cookies to all who actually read through this novel!