Bad day... Long
So this is kind of a vent, kind of training, a little bit of everything.
I know when you and your poneh are having a bad day, you are supposed to go back to something they know and end of a good note, but seriously... Has anyone else ever found that almost impossible??
Monday was like that for me. Due to Oscar taking down a fence in the paddock where I board and poor weather, We haven't done much work since Thursday and he's been locked in a smaller area. On Monday, I went to go work him and I swear everything we did fell apart. True he isn't quite 3 yet, but I've been working with him 5-6 days a week since December and he full well knows what to expect and generally does VERY well.
Because he has been getting a tad sour on the saddling process, my plan was to get him saddled, lunge for 10 minutes lightly and then do some hand grazing with the saddle on for positive reinforcement. That part went ok until I opened the gate to go graze... He charged the gate, so I made him stop, and back up several times to try and regain his attention and cooperation. No such luck. Neighbor next door saw and offered me use of her round pen.
We went over there and he settled in nicely free lunging. Figuring that was a good time to stop, I gathered him up and went to leave. He didn't just charge the gate of the round pen but bucked through the opening. He went in and out, in and out of the gate until he walked calmly. Ok good, Now we can go back and un-tack. WRONG!!
On the way back to our paddock (less than 100 yds away) he was pulling and spazzing out, running over me, you name it. Then we walked back and forth, back and forth, until he was calm. I do have to admit that I did get a little frustrated and punched him in the neck when he neglected the elbow in the shoulder while walking on top of me. Goodness gracious.
What should have been a 30 minute positive visit turned into 2 1/2 hours. The funny part is that I am pretty sure he was seriously mad at me, not just being two. Once we got all untacked, I let him go in his paddock while I put everything away. I accidentally left me grooming tote on the other side of the paddock but by the time I went to go get it, he had picked it up and flung everything out of it!! I guess that was his way of saying "Take that!!"
Well, that's my vent. Yesterday went great though. The last time he got 3 days off due to weather he was very similar - thank god summer is on the way!!
I'm sorry your day was crappy. I hate when I have those with my guy, feeling like whatever I do is a mistake. It gets ya down.
A suggestion though, and I mean no offense. You mentioned he is not yet three years old? And you're working him 5-6 days a week? It sounds like a lot for a youngster. I think he may be getting sour with the training, as it's become mundane and hum-drum.
Just some thoughts. I hope your next training session goes smoothly and is satisfying for the both of you. Good luck!
I am sorry you did not have a good day
hope you will have a better day soon
I think you did ok , all in all. What else can you do? Sit down and cry?
But, I agree that maybe letting him have more time to just soak on what he has learned will pay dividends ultimately.
I hope you're feeling better now.
And I'm totally with arrowsaway here. He IS really just a baby still, and he might be experiencing some difficulties with the amount of work you are giving him. Also, try not to humanize him - he wasn't saying "take that", he was probably just playing, expressing his boredom or frustration by tossing your grooming tote.
I hope you both have lots of positive moments in the future!
He'll be 3 next month, not just turned 2 :-)
I may have been misleading by the term "working". He is only ridden maybe 2-3 days a week for no longer than 30 minutes at a time. We do groundwork, lunging, in-hand trails, desensitizing, etc the other days. I guess I meant to imply that he isn't just hanging out in a pasture all week with no human interaction and minimal training.
Yesterday went great though!! It's only after he gets several days "off" (meaning none of the above) that he gets a little crazy!! :-P
Thank you for the cheering up!
I feel for you! I have a coming two year old that drives me crazy. Sometimes he is awesome. Sometimes he has me crying and pulling my hair out.
It sure is funny - my gelding sometimes does that, too. :D He also has the annoying habit to throw his saddle to the ground, if I have left it unattended within his reach just for a second.
Sounds like maybe he is feeling cooped up. My girl isn't in training, but she can be a real pill if the horses have to stay in the lot too long. If she gets the chance to go out in the pasture, stretch her legs, relax and just be a horse for a while, she's a lot easier to deal with.
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