Ground work, ground work , ground work, that’s my new theme. Since I have no saddle at the moment I’m focusing on lunging my filly. I’ve taken to lunging her for 20 minutes a day trying to get her into a routine. I bring her in from the field, groom her, put on her splint boots and caveson and we do 10 minutes in each direction walk to trot, trot to walk, and back again. Our circles are looking less and less like D’s and more and more like circles, which I’m pretty pleased about. She is picking up the voice commands but doesn’t have them entirely yet. Her trot is often calm and collected which makes me happy, when shes in a groove shes really in the groove. When shes not, she’s stubborn forgetting she knows English, extra speedy at the trot and carries her head very high in the air. Which doesn’t make me happy. We don’t canter yet, when I have tried to get her to canter on the line its pretty clear she doesn’t know what I’m asking her to do, the few times she did canter on the line she got very wound up and turned from being my sweet lovely filly to my not so sweet wound up racehorse. As a result I’m working more on the walk trot and not trying to get her to canter every session. I’m just throwing that in periodically. I know eventually we will get there. I’m in no rush.
Jezebel settles right into her lunging now, that is once I get her to the ring to work. Before I get her to the ring though can be trying. She now understands that the caveson means work and therefore is putting up a real fight when its time to put it on her. Shes never been real good at bridling or haltering it’s something that i know needs a lot of work. This new temper tantrum she throws with the caveson on a whole different level. I’ve tried positive reinforcement and treat tricking to some small measure of success and I never let her win the fight I always get the caveson on and we get to work but man it’s a struggle.
Not quite sure how I’m going to solve this new challenge other then always win until she just gives up and realizes that I will in fact always win. The caveson will go on and we will go to work…every…single…time. Shes a smart girl but shes also a strong willed and stubborn girl. So it could be the next session when the light bulb goes off in her brain or it could be months. Time will tell.