About Me

My photo
North Lawrence, New York, United States
I can be described as lover of life, an animal lover, and lover of education. I am constantly striving for knowledge and learning opportunities. I've been around horses my entire life. I enjoy working with horses and their human partners through natural horsemanship philosophies, natural balance bare foot hoof care, reiki, red-light therapy, essential oils, aromatherapy, crystal healing, chromotherapy, flower essences, and more. I am a Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki Master Teacher who offers treatments for people, horses, dogs, cats, and other creatures great and small. I also teach Reiki classes for those interested in learning how to treat themselves, their loved ones, and even their animals! Natural Horse Lover Farm is located in Northern New York between the St. Lawrence River and Adirondack Mountains. Heaven on Earth. naturalhorseloverfarm.com

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Lola is Home!

The trip down to Vermont went well. The weather was cool and sunny. We ended up meeting Lola's previous owner at a David Lichman Clinic rather than drive downstate. She was going to be there and we were up for a New England road trip. The farm we met at was beautiful. I do hope to get back there some day and really take the time to look around (and hopefully participate in a clinic).

When we arrived, my friend Barb (the one selling me Lola) burst into tears and so did I. We were happy to see each other and also really happy for Lola's new life to come. We talked for a bit, got to know Lola just a little, Rick gave her a big hug (so did I). We knew she was a nice horse and looked forward to getting to know her better at home. After the paperwork was all done, I wrapped her legs, put on a fly mask, and asked her to load on the trailer. She was very resistant to do so. Barb played with her for a bit and still, she would not load. We took all of the stuff I'd put on her for her protection and thought that may make the difference, nope! So, we broke out the apples, Barb went to get her other horse to comfort Lola, and Barb's friend and I, with Lola at the trailer entrance, started singing, "Her name was Lola, she was a show girl, with yellow feathers in her hair..." and I was petting her face. My singing partner gave her and apple. Barb arrived with Tory her horse (the one who hauled with Lola). I asked Lola to load and she did. She never had a problem loading in the past but, we believe that the 4 hour trip to Vermont, the strange farm, not being able to see Tory, and then me, a stranger, a strange trailer, etc. all added up to a threshold. So, apparently, a friendly horse she knew, apples, and a little singing did the trick! LOL

I really enjoyed seeing Barb in person, loved meeting new people at the clinic (some of you are my blog readers), and Barb's friend, the one who helped with the trailer loading (I am so sorry I cannot remember your name) seemed very nice too. I wish we all lived closer, I know the three of us would have a good time! It truly feel isolated up here away from any Parelli people. I love living up here, just want some more like-minded horse people studying what I am studying. It is not to say that there are not natural horse people up here whose company I enjoy, there are but, my journey is Parelli Natural Horsemanship and there is a difference when you are all on the same path, talk the same language, and truly understand the entire picture, together. I love the Parelli community, I just love it. I am thinking of trying to connect with the Parelli folks up in Ottawa. It is two hours away, at least, but, maybe I can get together at least once a month? Not sure. There were Parelli folks in Cornwall, Canada but, I emailed them and never heard back.

The trip home was uneventful. We drove through Vermont and crossed back into NY at Rouses Point. The roads were much better than the way we came (we originally drove through New York and crossed south of Port Henry). We had to laugh though, because when we were at a stop light, she'd whinny and this one time, a guy started looking around, it was really funny. We ended up at McDonald's for dinner (we had been eating sandwiches and snacks in the truck for breakfast and lunch). When we stopped there, we checked on her again and she was just hanging out, munching hay, and seemed calm and unconcerned about anything.

It was dark when we got home. When I unloaded her, she started turning her head. I simply wiggled the rope and she turned her head back forward and then unloaded backwards, slowly, as I wanted her to. Once off the trailer, she was more interested in eating grass than anything else. My horses were going nuts and acting nasty but she was fairly level-headed. I separated them for the night rather than risking injuries by putting them together and the boys ran out to the field and disappeared. She was housed at the barn with access to the front turnout. None of them would talk to each other at all. I checked on her several times over the night and she was fine.

Yesterday, I had each horse in its own area so that no horses would be together and thus, no one felt compelled to be the boss. That made the herd dynamic quite different, interesting (divide and conquer I guess). I then played with each but mostly Fosse (who was acting up the worst when she arrived and seemed to be the troublemaker). I reminded him that I was the herd leader (not him), without exception. I got extremely particular about what he needed to do. So like if I wanted him to stand and he moved his but away, then he had to move it back and then several more feet in the opposite direction than what he was trying to do. Anyhow, I got him right in the palm of my hand and he realized I was still herd boss. I them did a little liberty and stopped on a good note. As the day progressed, we put Lola and Whiskey together and she made sure he knew he was lower that her in the ranks (he didn't care). Later, Lola and Fosse together and they were fine, a few kicks but overall not too bad (I think they are still working on who is herd boss between them actually). Finally, a few hours later, the three were together and they had it all worked out (but we didn't' allow them in the barn together yet). We just let them graze in the front turnout and eventually, they were all standing, totally relaxed, leaving each other alone.

While the horses were grazing and learning to like each other, Rick and I emptied the barn, moved all of our large equipment out, moved wood, and anything else that was in the way, moved all of the hay (100 bales-glad I didn't have more like I would later in the season-we have 400 on order-but my friend is going to house most of it for us thank goodness), moved the wall in the horse area about 5 feet expanding the area to better accommodate the three, filled it with more shavings, refilled the water, installed a third hay feeder, filled the feeders with hay, etc.

At the end of the evening, in anticipation of the rain, we let them all come in the barn. I stood guard with my carrot stick. I played friendly with them and if one chased the other out of the barn, I chased that horse and let the other one back in. Finally, everyone seemed okay so we fed them some apples, that worked okay. After that, everyone got grain and alfalfa cubes. We gave Fosse extras to keep him busy. I stood there watching and playing friendly with my stick with all of them. Life was calm and good.

Rick and I both really love her. She is a wonderful addition to our family. Thank you again, Barb, for bringing her into our lives.

1 comment:

Naturally Gaited said...

More photos!!!!