(Ex?)Feral Pony Progress! Yay!
So today is OFFICIALLY the first day that I left the barn *not* feeling like I spent the time putting a onesie on my cat! =D
I got Mama Pony awhile back and I've been slightly over my head. All I need to do is tame her down...actual training would be taken care of later, by someone else...but my work has been cut out for me getting her to be a normal functioning equine citizen.
Mama Pony likes NOTHING we do. Nothing! My previous experience with an untouched weanling filly prepared me for some things, but not a pony that doesn't like scratches, doesn't like brushing, takes treats about half the time etc! Yeesh! I had to retreat and go slower when working with her back feet, though I can get her fronts up every time now, and if I don't halter her for week? She goes straight back to acting like it's going to eat her, even though she was 100 percent still for haltering the previous week. Uck!
THIS WEEK though I had a breakthrough!!!!! She came in all covered in icicles, and I used a Furminator to break through some of them and get rid of underlying shed. She did her usual circling around the stall, but eventually stood still. Then I went to work on her mane...I brushed the icicles out, poured some mineral oil in and braided all the way up. She started blinking and chewing, which BO was impressed with, especially when I showed her that I can literally throw my leg up on MP's back and she won't move, even though she seems to think I want to eat her legs if I go near the rears LOL.
Anyway, I got to her forelock, and it is one huge puffball with a couple icicles in it...I said ok, screw it, I'll do it later. I fluffed it up, and told Mama Pony the news...and she just gave me this LOOK.
I don't know how to describe it, but the look was something like "....you're not going to finish? =("
So I sighed and went back to MP to try to brush out her forelock...as I'm standing there tugging the brush through the ends and trying to straighten it out...Mama Pony LOWERED HER HEAD for me. Not only did she lower her head so I could brush and BRAID her forelock, she then stood, ears relaxed, eyes soft, and let me scratch a spot on her cheek that I've always suspected was an itchy spot.
AND SHE SEEMED COMFORTABLE WITH THIS AND EVEN ENJOYED IT!
THIS IS HUGE!!! She has never showed ANY signs of enjoying my touch! EVER! But she lowered her head for me and seemed to enjoy the scratches! This is so exciting!!!! I know it seems like such a small thing to be excited about, but her figuring out I'm not a horse eating monster is a big window to earning her trust, and it will make training a thousand times easier! Whee!!!!!!! Progress!
Here are some pictures of her last week:
Good for you! It's always exciting when you have a breakthrough with horses, especially difficult ones :)
When I got my gelding to start lowing his head when I bridled him (he used to jerk his head back, I think he thought I was going to smack him in the head) you'd think I won the Kentucky derby ;) I was extremely proud of myself.
So congratulations, and good luck with her!
Congrats! And good job! BTW, what a pretty pony she is!
Thanks guys! I was walking on Cloud 9 all the way back from the barn! lol! It seems like such a small thing but it's an awesome step in the right direction!
Galloping Guitarist, thanks...I can't wait to see what she looks like under that beard and winter coat! =)
Keeping our hooves crossed that she remembers (next visit) just how good it felt (this visit)!
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