The Scarey Spot! ( a bit long)
My oh my... tried to get out for a short 15 minute bareback ride on Jade (the new one, still learning). It ended up being over an hour and a half because there was a scarey spot in the yard that she WOULD NOT go into unless I dismounted and led her there! How silly.
How would you guys have handled this?
The Scarey Spot was between two vehicles about 30 feet apart. My son had a small fire going in the backyard about 100 feet away. I had brought along a plastic milk crate to be able to mount.
So, first I led her all around the area and the fire area. (Backyard fires are normal here. The horses see them all the time.) Then I put the milk crate down between the two vehicles and mounted.
Usually she will stand until I tell her to move, but today she backed out of that spot right away. So, of course, I cued her forward to go back to where she's supposed to be.
That's where the trouble started. There was NO WAY she was going to go back there. I did the walk away, walk back. Walk towards, back away. Come close and stand and look at it for a while. When she went backwards or in a direction I didn't ask for I turned her around until she was facing the right way again. She was getting antsy and wanted to buck but (yipee) she didn't. I thought maybe the fire was reflecting in the vehicle windows, but still and all she had already been led all around this.
After about maybe 25 minutes of this nonsense, I got off and led her in and out of The Scarey Spot about 15 - 20 times. I made her stand in The Scarey Spot. I backed her up in The Scarey Spot.
Then I got on and tried again. Still no go. Dismount again. Lead again. Oh and at one point in leading her around the first time, she banged the milk crate with her foot and got all excited so I spent and extra few times going around so the milk crate wouldn't bit her again.
Anyway, so I mounted and tried again. Still nothing. Got my son to lead her while I sat on her doing nothing. She was ok. Got my son to do it again, but this time I cued her forward at the same time my son did. She didn't like that so much. So we did that again.
Then finally after all this I managed to walk her almost right into The Scarey Spot and told her to stop. Walked away and did that two more times until finally the third time I got her completely there. I did praise her when she stopped only when I told her to and loved her right up when we were actually IN The Scarey Spot.
Whew! I hope to get home early enough to do this again tomorrow. Any tips on how I can make this easier if it's a problem again?
Sorry it's so long. Just didn't want to leave anything important out.