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14.7.2013: Wonders never seem to cease PDF Print E-mail

14.7.13: Wonders never seem to cease



It seems impossible how great the changes have been in the few weeks since Alegria's big breakthrough. If you've been following the updates on the Aktivstall Mauerbach Facebook page you'll have seen how rapid and dramatic the progress has been. From the horse you could hardly touch, let alone catch or lead, she is has turned into a model pupil.


Following on from our last session, it was then not difficult to halter her and start teaching her to lead properly. There were a few hairy moments, but generally the progress was very smooth. We had already started with "following a feel" on the rope around her neck, now that had to be transferred to the halter.


First of all, she had to learn to give to a "feel" on the rope. This means paying careful attention to the slightest response, even if it's just a flick of and ear or a glance with one eye. She doesn't need to move her feet to start with, just to give me her attention


A different environment


The first few sessions were in the stable block, where space was limited, but in a few days she was ready to venture outside, and we went for her first "proper walk" down to the round pen. We took "The Dackel" along for company so she would have another horse to follow, but in fact she proved very confident, and was not at all bothered when we separated them.



In the round pen, we repeated the work we had been doing in the stable block, asking her to yield to my space and move around with me, rather than being "led".


 And new experiences


I did more work on her picking her feet up, but when Hescho Roth, the hoof specialist, came to work on the other horses, I took the opportunity to ask her to work with Alegria, too. I was expecting her to be able to pick up the front feet, but in fact, Alegria was as cool as a cucumber, and with me holding each front hoof for Hescho, we managed all the necessary trimming and rasping, as well!




Alegria was a real "pro" and stood quietly while here front hooves were trimmed and rasped.


Next think was teaching Alegria to tie up to a rail or ring. She took this completely in her stride, as though she'd been doing it all her life. However, I was careful to use a magnetic "slip ring", so that if she did pull back, the rope would give and she would not panic.


Being tied up proved no problem at all, and Alegria stood quietly while I stroked her all over.


Finally, I asked her to lift her back feet. This, too, was no big deal and she stayed completely relaxed while I moved her hoof around.


Typically, the hind feet are more difficult than the front feet, but with all the previous preparation, we had done, Alegria took it all calmly and with no fuss.


Many thanks to Claudia for the photos!


As always, please feel free to post any comments or questions on the Thinking Horse Facebook page!




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