Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Corner of 5th and insanity.
• Horses: 0
There was one horse I've met that needed to learn how not to drag her feet. The first thing we did was take her out to a hilly field that had some cacti plants, uneven footing, and a small (maybe a ft deep?) little ditch previously used for irrigation and lunge her in a wide circle. It was HER job to look out for the plants and be mindful of the irrigation ditch, just as it was our job to make sure things didn't get too crazy with her. She learned quickly that dragging her feet wasn't the solution of getting out of the work she was asked to do, but to pick up her feet, step over the ditch and the cacti plants, and still respond to us in order to be rewarded. The field was a pasture that had been left alone for aeration and regrowth, to be used again in the spring. So it wasn't as "dangerous" as it sounds in text. Lol.
Another horse, similar situation, took the next step of being lunged in a large circle with poles at the 12, 3, 6, 9 positions around the circle, instead of in a straight line. It translated well into his future as he became more aware of the poles and when to step. His progress gradually went from trotting a circle around us to working down straight lines of poles on a free lunge, then ridden (in a round pen set up like the lunge circle before, then in lines after he got good at that), eventually jumping. Took time, building blocks and patience to get him good at it.
The path is different for you and me.. but the journey begins in the heart.