Within the first day: Begin imprinting
Within the first week: Haltering, picking up feet
Within the first month: Leading, trailering, and touching everywhere on it's body
When is it okay to begin lunging? I don't mean making him run hard or for long amounts of time, I mean making him go at a calm walk, teaching him to 'whoa' and 'walk'. When is it okay to do 'real' lunging?
Touching everywhere, tarps, car engines, dogs, and plastic bags are the common things to desensitize a foal to, but what else do you do?
I've always thought that getting a bareback pad with stirrups and cinching it up is a good idea. I do not mean riding him, but just getting him used to things bouncing off of his side, and cinching (I wouldn't cinch it as tight as a saddle would go either). Plus it is lightweight, so it couldn't do any damage to his back. A lot of people seem to hate this idea, but won't give me a good reason why. Good or bad, and why?