Happy New Year's Eve! Any resolutions? Mine are to be a healthier me, to get back at my Parelli studies and pursue my horse dreams, and to have even more fun enjoying my great life with Rick and the critters! oxox
- Savvy Horse Girl
- 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
Saturday, December 31, 2011
Happy New Year's Eve! Any resolutions? Mine are to be a healthier me, to get back at my Parelli studies and pursue my horse dreams, and to have even more fun enjoying my great life with Rick and the critters! oxox
Friday, December 23, 2011
Good morning friends. It has been a long time since I've posted because I've not had anything to say (can you believe it?)! Work has been really busy and horse time non-existent. I feel more like a waitress and frankly even with that, Rick has done more for them than I have lately.
Thursday, November 24, 2011
Well, that's it for this evening! Credit card has been put away...for now. Happy days. :)
Monday, November 21, 2011
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
I just learned that Linda Parelli's horse West Point died suddenly from a freak accident. I have no specific details but wanted to post a quick message to tell you all. I encourage that you connect on Parelli Connect or Facebook to send her your thoughts of sympathy and regard (I did). RIP West Point.
Monday, November 14, 2011
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Friday, November 11, 2011
My current truck is a 1993 Chevy 2500 2-wheel drive (I wish it was a 4-wheel drive) with heavy duty rear-end differential, heavy duty brakes, heavy duty cooling system, rear suspension air bag support, a big block 454 engine, and much more. Although it is an older vehicle, it works fantastic. It easily pulls my 2002 Moritz 3-horse slant-load bumper-pull horse/stock combo trailer with a tack/dressing room (it can be converted to a 4-horse if I remove the tack). I used to pull it with my 1984 Chevy K-10 4-wheel drive pickup but it is just not up to the task anymore and now is the resident farm truck. So, if I have a truck and trailer, you may wonder why I am looking...especially because I am so busy...who has time to travel!? :)
Thursday, November 10, 2011
I am still here but have been extraordinarily busy at home and at work. We have all of the hay shavings, and firewood put up for the winter. It takes a lot to live in the country, in the woods, in the north country! Work is also extraordinarily busy and I'm getting a great deal accomplished (thank goodness I love my work otherwise at this point, I'd be going mad). LOL
I have also strayed way off track over that last several months--easy to do when you are focusing on everything but oneself. That said, today is a new day and my first back on track, completely, mentally, emotionally, and physically. I went to the gym and have been enjoying healthy nutrition choices today (yeah for protein shakes laced with veggies and fruits, and of course Arbonne detox tea--I feel really good).
Friday, November 04, 2011
Life has been really busy...what else is new!? We picked up and loaded 4 loads of hay about two weeks ago (320 bales) and have 3 loads to do this weekend (an additional 240). It takes Rick and I two hours per load which includes the drive time, loading, and unloading...yeah, we do all the work and it is tiring! He'll be picking up several loads of shavings next week too (one huge scoop is a cubic yard...we will be probably getting 3 or 4 for now). The new woodshed has worked out great as it holds firewood, we've created a shavings bin, and it holds some hay too...the overflow. In any event, as you can see, we are gearing up for a long, cold, winter.
Tuesday, November 01, 2011
Monday, October 31, 2011
I am attending a Library Marketing Institute sponsored by the Ad Counsel and the Rochester Regional Library Network. It is a great opportunity to learn about marketing, branding, grants, and so much more. the content extends well past libraries and will be helpful no only in my profession but in my personal life. It is a six month commitment with monthly meetings 4 hours from home (which means two nights in a hotel with my dog Morgan), homework, a final project, and a truly unique experience.
Dear Ms. Burdine,
I am writing to you about a unique philanthropic opportunity to support women, allowing them an outlet for decompression, relaxation, and something altogether different than their normal routine, a new way to help with women’s work-life balance needs. Women of the 21st century are working even harder in full-time careers, raising families, engaging in relationships, volunteering for a variety of community programs, and often caring for others with little regard to their own needs. I propose that to support these women in their endeavors, women need an outlet that allows them time to engage with themselves and others in a fun, nurturing environment. Natural Horsemanship is a holistic approach to horsemanship where horses and humans come together and develop a relationship using psychology, communication, and partnership as the foundation for a relationship. This is achieved through self-guided and classroom study, hands-on practice, and group events.
I am proposing to develop the Hidden Meadows Natural Horsemanship Equestrian Center for Women in North Lawrence, New York (Easy commuting distance from Potsdam, Massena, Malone, NY, and Southern Canada). The project is estimated at a need of $1,000,000. It has been designed to offer a place for discovery and learning, for relaxation and reflectin, for good health, wellness, and so much more. The Center design is a full-service day facility allowing one to exercise, eat right, study, and so much more. It is a safe, non-judgmental equestrian-minded environment where the focus is on nurturing one’s physical, mental, and emotional fitness, a place to develop one’s leadership and communications skills, a place to learn about topics like (but not limited to) horse husbandry, natural balance trimming, all riding disciplines, farm management, a place where one can engage in regular exercise, have a place to prepare a healthy meal or snack, a place to network, through activities with and about horses using all natural horsemanship guidelines to create partnership, harmony, and finesse. It allows women to enjoy a horse-centric dream otherwise often unattainable because of time, space, finances, and the like. Through our natural, holistic approach, it is a place where dreams can come true and the world is truly a better place for horses and humans alike, where principles are always placed before goals, where one’s dignity is always left in-tact, and where one can leave feeling satisfied with a true sense of accomplishment and joy. The beauty of natural horsemanship is that all skills can be translated into one’s life and thus, these activities will help the person grow in all areas of her life.
Note: This is not an exclusive facility. Men and children are welcome but the facility is structured around the specific equestrian needs of women.
· Purchase 75 additional acres to add to the existing 40 acre farm
· Build Morton Indoor Arena (150’W x 250’L) with amenities
o Full-lighting, windows, mirrors, finished walls & ceiling
o Rubber/sand footing
o Horse Barn attached (60’x 120’) with rubber matted, 12’x12’ stalls, wash rack, heated tack room
o Heated, technology-equipped classroom
o Heated Lounge with viewing window, technology, and library
o Fully-equipped, heated kitchen
o Heated bathroom with shower
o Heated utility/laundry room
o Heated workout room with equipment (20’x20’)
o Heated dance room (20’x20’)
o Heated office (for two)
· Build Morton Hay Barn (36’X36’)
· 6 Morton Run-In Sheds (24’ x 16’)
· Six 5-acre turnout areas
· Outdoor Hunter/Jumper Arena (150’x250’) with wood fencing
· Outdoor Exercise Arena (100’x150’) with wood fencing
· Dressage Arena (66’x197’) with wood barriers and letters
· Round pen Training Area (60’ x 60’) with steel panels
· 5 acre playground/obstacle course fully equipped
· Trails throughout the property
· 2 acre training/recreation pond
· Shared farm garden (80’ x 80’)
· 4WD Kubota Tractor
· 4WD, 1 ton, Chevrolet Pick-up Truck with Plow Unit
· 6-h Exiss Horse trailer with full living quarters for off-site events
· Driveway/road expansion
· 6 lesson/lending horses
· Tack/blankets, etc. for 6 lesson/lending horses
· Horse boarding
· Natural horsemanship horse training , lessons (both in the classroom and hands-on)
· Shows, camping trips, trail rides, and other group activities
· Private use of all facilities for participants
· Fitness classes focusing on the equestrian and her needs
· Farm garden with fresh produce during the summer
· Lending library for Center clientele
· Nutrition and healthy living seminars for horses and humans
· Facility can be rented out for select outside functions to generate revenue
Thank you in advance for your consideration and time. I truly believe that this project will help the women of St. Lawrence County and surrounding regions find a better, much-needed work-life balance and higher level of personal growth. As a long-term supporter and student of natural horsemanship, as a professional working as an Academic Library Director, I can speak to the positive impact this sport has had on my life and the balancing act a professional women has to strike. I look only to share it with others. I look forward to meeting with you to discuss this proposal further. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
Michelle L. Young
Owner, Hidden Meadows Natural Horsemanship
North Lawrence, New York, USA
Natural Horse Lover http://naturalhorselover.blogspot.com/
Monday, October 17, 2011
I've been making a conserted effort to spend time with the horses over the last several days and I am feeling very satisfied. We are not doing much, as you know, because it is raining, cold, and dark when I get home. However, I am still spending time and that is all that matters. Tonight, I got in an hour feeding the horses and cleaning the barn. I enjoyed listening to them, more intently than in a long time, listening to their whinnys and knickers, listening to their hooves hit the ground and shuffle the shavings, their teeth chew and crunch their hay, carrots, alfalfa cubes & pellets. I listened as they sucked up and drooled water on the floor. I listened to them breathe, listened as they moved one another around, I just listened as I cleaned and checked in with Morgan who was hanging out in the barn with me, not making a sound. I listened as the shovel scraped the ground and as it plunged into the clean shavings pile, all of these sounds filling the air, but not polluting it like the other sounds I typically hear day after day. These sounds were soothing and enjoyable. The barn is a place of solice for me and I am glad to be back out there. I realize that I don't have to feel guilty and avoidant just because I cannot do everything I want or feel I should be doing, I realize that every moment is truly special and welcomed by my beautiful and forgiving horses.
As Morgan and I headed back to the barn, we listened to the rain as it fell on our heads and I listened to our feet fall on the gravel driveway as we walked together, through the woods, down the long, curving driveway, in the pitch black dark of night. Have you ever just let your heart and your dog lead the way, lead you back to your home, in the woods, not knowing what may be lurking as you walked past it? For me, it was trust, partnership, and was simply fantastic...Morgan my other "horse." LOL
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
For the first time in ages, I spent time in the barn and wanted to be there. A hard reality to admit or realize. I think I've been over whelmed, sad, and just out of sorts---for months. I know this may sound bizarre considering how much I love my horses but, my work life has been so hectic and stressful that it is all I can do to come home and fall over, hopefully landing on the couch and not the floor, lol. My healthy living has gone by the wayside and continues to be a struggle (which makes me feel horrible on so many levels), my horses rarely see me (which makes me feel guilty), but my career is truly thriving (which makes me very pleased). We've had so many projects going on at the farm that my head has been spinning (not to mention Rick's--he's carried the majority of that responsibility). I don't know why or what happened but last night, I felt excited to walk to the barn and hang out, a feeling that has been gone far too long, a great feeling. I was out so late that Rick came looking for me and found me walking down the driveway, through the woods, in the dark (with no flashlight, lol), and yes, I was smiling.
The horses were actually out in the field most of the time but, I enjoyed straightening up, cleaning, and just hanging out, by myself, in one of my favorite places, the barn. My guinea hens, ducks, and chickens all came in and meandered around, calling out, we all had a good time--they are hilarious! Eventually, the horses came in and were treated to a gourmet meal, much-needed grooming, and they seemed to enjoy the time with me as much as I enjoyed it with them, they were nickering like crazy!
On my home to-do list (let's not even talk about my work to-do list) is to start eating healthy again without making excuses (planning will be key), resume my exercise routine (which probably will make me feel 100% better mentally and physically, almost immediately), catch up on my Parelli videos, trim hooves, get hay up for the winter, and so much more. However, rather than looking at a long list, just getting back to the basics of things that make me feel happy again, will be vital...get back on a healthy path and incorporating horse time in my daily routine again. I plan to look at everything like it was the first time all over again and I challenge you all to do the same...it should prove to make everything fresh and fun again. I hope you all are doing well. Check in if you have time!
Friday, September 16, 2011
Decompressing from a long, hard week...rode my horse, played with my dogs, now drinking wine and noshing next to a warm toasty fire (our first for the season thanks to Rick for making it). Horses are amazing and mine have been patient with my absence lately. My Sat-Mon were stellar, everything was great, work was super busy and productive (the way I like it), horse play, Zumba, Weight Watchers, fun with Rick, delicious gourmet meals, life was grand, and had I kept it up (health-wise that is), I'd have had a great weight loss for the week, Tuesday is a total blank, literally so busy I cannot remember it, and Wednesday was horrible on so many levels (and not all WW related--mostly work related), Thursday was tough, today a bit better.
Tonight, I am chilling out at home, doing what I want (including ignoring work stuff for once), and plan to not weigh-in tomorrow at the WW meeting. I know it won't be a loss and I have no reason to torture myself with a number that does not move or moves in the wrong direction. I have plently of other things going on to manage and a self-imposed left down is not my idea of loving oneself. Frankly my friends, by mid- week, my life was a mess and very difficult, I was a mess, I was human and fallible and on some levels, and at this point, I just don't care.
So tonight I am going to drink my bottle of wine and eat cheese and snacks, while sitting on my rocking chair in my riding pants, smelling like my horse, and finally feeling some sense of stress relief and control. I have to thank Fosse for allowing me to be his partner and for having fun riding around the property tonight--it was so much fun. I always feel like I am in another world, like I am free hen with the horses. I thank Rick for helping me finally feel better because he is the world's best husband and supports me through it all. And finally, I thank my colleague and friend Kevin for reminding me of what was truly important in life (my husband, animals, home, and all that I love). I look up to him because he;s mastered things I am still working on.
I'll try again this week, to be better in all aspects of my life, to give my 100% in everything I do, I promise.
Thursday, September 08, 2011
Lola and I worked it all out, it ended well but, I had to dismount almost immediately because she was very ugly towards me when I simply asked her to back up...she rang her neck, tried to bite me, and even offered to bolt and buck should I not get off on my own. I took it as an opportunity to reconnect and get back to basics. How rude it was of me to ask for anything when all I'd been doing is mostly just cleaning and feeding her without really spending any quality time. We played in the playground, round pen, in the yard, driveway, and even with the trailer. Getting back to basics for us meant reestablishing herd hierarchy, playing the games and patterns, and learning to listen to one another. Overall, a good session but one that was fraught with a lot of emotion...a good thing as it tested both of us and our relationship which is still on good terms, luckily. I didn't try to ride again by the way, I didn't have a desire and saw no point in it.
I need to get my life back on track and my mind back in the horse game, back in the healthier living game, and so much more. I am in a true and horrible funk...I owe you all like 6 weekly tasks! But, I think for now, I'll have to stop the weekly task thing because I am not active enough in the horse game at the moment to even be thinking about it. So, I'll post things as them come but not on any kind of schedule anymore, I need to take the pressure (and guilt) off for now, I hope you understand. I need to bet back to the basics in my life, planning, eating right, playing with horses, exercising, and spending time with Rick. (Oh, and working of course, lol.)
My plan...? I am menu planning some easy, light meals and also planning for horse time and physical activity--a fresh start. I've registered for Bangin' Bodies, Zumba I, and Zumba II at the University starting the week of Sept 19th. I am starting back at the gym on Monday come hell or high water! And, starting back on Sat I'll be back at Weight Watchers meetings and Zumba afterwards. I am also pledging 30 minutes a day with the horses doing something other than cleaning or feeding. It does not sound like much but it is a start and fairly realistic. I have to do something...I feel just horrible lately. I am physically and emotionally drained and need a new start, a complete overhaul, an attitude adjustment. Rick reminded me of how great I felt when I was exercising, playing with the horses, and eating right (I think he feels cruddy too frankly). So, I am going back at it full force because for me, complete immersion is the only thing that works, I cannot just dabble in anything, I have to be totally focused and almost obsessed. (This may mean a few extra visits to the chiropractor but I don't care, I love my adjustments and my doctor!)
So that is the story, it is not a pretty one but an honest one. Take care everyone, keep in touch, and do come back to the blog, I plan to post more often again! Sigh.
P.S. I am working on a plan for a vacation or at the least, a weekend excursion with Rick and no one else. I love my family but enough is enough...I need my personal life back...sorry to offend but it is reality. I love my private life, my home with husband and critters off in the woods, in our own little world.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
This week's challenge is a play on my post about mutual respect. In thinking about how important giving and receiving respect is, particularily when striving for successful relationships, I thought it was truly a good weekly task.
This week, every time you interact with your horse, ask permission to engage. Ask for permission to enter the stall, to put on the halter and/or tack, permission to mount and dismount, etc. Not sure how? Refer to your Parelli materials, it is all in there!
Here is a link to an article on Horse Channel by Pat Parelli responding to a question about a horse kicking. He talks about respect and asking permission...click here to read.
does not matter. UGH.
The reason why I am writing is that today, I was reminded about how important mutual respect was. Not only receiving it but making sure that I always give it to others. I believe I do but, being on the receiving end of reactions, responses, interactions that lacked this respect towards me or any caring about the work I do, my professional experience, etc., was truly disturbing to me. I felt like....well, you get the picture without the gory (and probably boring) details. In hindsight, perhaps I took some things more personally than I should have but, I truly believed, in my heart of hearts, that the work I presented was done with care, diligence, and was what was asked of me. I do not go into anything lightly and always put in 100%. In hindsight, perhaps those who made me feel this way have no idea and therefore, I must forgive the situation and will work harder to breathe and will plan future interactions and responses. (A colleague who witnessed this did reach out in a kind way to me, showing understanding, concern, and helped me see from a different lens.) In the future, I won't let a situation like this get to me but instead, try to remember to think the phrase (thanks to Linda Parelli)..."how interesting." Somehow that phrase helps me breathe but I typically only use it in horse situations.
A regard for the dignity of person isn't much to ask, is it? Good relationships are built on mutual respect. This brings me to horses (I am sure you are thinking, finally, she's going to talk horses). Our relationships, including those with our horses, are truly important and good ones are based on mutual respect. Your horse should respect you and you should respect your horse in all situations...this is why those practicing PNH ask for permission to enter a stall (or other living quarter), ask for permission to mount and dismount, and so much more. We pay attention to responses and reactions, and we always try to improve.
Based on Lisa's comment in another post (she's one of my regular readers--thanks Lisa), I realized that I was not completely respecting Lola (despite my sincerest intentions). I never truly and seriously took into account the fact that she is a mare and will have hormone and physical issues that may interfere with our relationship that my geldings simply do not experience. I mean, I know she is a mare and has cycles but, I never truly gave her the benefit of the doubt because of it. To be proactive and bring my responsibility of respect up to par, I contacted my veterinarian today to get more information and thus gain knowledge on Lola's physiology to allow me to better understand her and react appropriately when she and I are having difficulties.
Tonight, take a moment to reflect on your relationships, what ever and with whom ever they may be, it is truly important. It is just another piece of never ending self-improvement. S-A-V-V-Y!
Saturday, July 23, 2011
I started attending WW meetings again this morning (something that helps me focus on my health and well-being). Rick is doing well and seems like his happy old self, and the animals are all acting like little angels. Somehow the universe has aligned again for us and life seems more normal. ❤
I have a great deal of work to do to get myself back to my lowest weight and best fitness level, then of course to get to goal once and for all. If you were wondering, I haven't been to a meeting since May 7th. I appreciated the hugs and warm welcomes I received from the group as if I was just on a long vacation, they are all are so sweet. I purchased the 3-month tracker as that is my most favorite method of tracking above online with my PC or smart phone. I believe the act of writing and reading a document has a very different and lasting experience. I've written everything down, planned my week, and feel confident that I can and will be back on track. Funny how a simple meeting adds so much value...must be the structure and accountability piece. (I experienced much the same with my horse group in VA. We would meet, challenge each other, and somehow that pushed the envelope increasing progress.) I am starting back at WW as if this was all new so, I am reviewing my introductory materials and set a 5% goal to be met by August 27th.
Rick has been in the process of adjusting medications, trying to mentally cope with less than good news, and getting himself back in the healthy living game as well. Reminders of mortality have a tendency to make people feel out of control but, together, we plan to live a long time, despite any recent detours we've had to face.
As far as the critters, all is well at Hidden Meadows. Everyone is snoozing with the heat and no one is fighting. Good enough for me! As with WW, I plan to review and play catch-up with my Parelli materials too...are you behind in your studies? Perhaps a little reading or videos is a good plan if it is too hot to do much else.
Thank you again for your friendship and support. If there is anything that I can do for you, please let me know. I wish you all a happy, healthy, and long life full of love, fun, and horses!
Friday, July 22, 2011
Today after work, I went home and had some farm time. It has really been a long and hot week so, to me, this was chill-out time doing what I love most, being outside with the critters and my sweet hubby. The chickens and guinea keats were doing great, scratching, fluffing, eating, Rick was splitting wood (and sweating heavily--it is still very hot here), and the horses were eating hay under a tree. Once they (the horses) saw me, they stopped and immediately came over to see me. I was clear with each as to how far into my space they were allowed, and even asked for a few minor things (at liberty). I then decided to check-in with Lola, one-on-one, using the 22 foot line and halter, carrot stick and string, just like last night. She was thoughtful, had a kind eye, never offered to rear, buck, squeal, rear, or bite. She very easily did all that I asked and circling was a breeze. She had a beautiful, collected, slow, trot, an animated but controlled walk, she disengaged easily, and never acted up, she was just an angel. I didn't use a treat to reward her, just a nice scratch and some petting of her face which she seemed to appreciate. She wasn't learning anything new and my friend Clare mentioned using treats only during a learning process so, I thought I'd give that a try (also, I remember something form the Horsenality Report about no treats for her but I cannot remember all the details at the moment--maybe treats only at certain times or something).
Thursday, July 21, 2011
Upon reentering the barn, the horses were eating hay, the boys calm as usual and Lola, a little on edge. She truly was one big ball of attitude. I blocked her with my arm bend and moving it upwards a few times, keeping her well out of my space until I haltered her and put on the 22 foot line, grabbed my carrot stick and string, and then moved outside with her. In hindsight, I should have sprayed the both of us with bug spray but, there was about 15 minutes of daylight left and I didn't think of it, I was more intersted in fixing our relationship.
The first thing I asked her to do was to walk, me in zone 3, but at a distance (about 5 feet away). I didn't allow her to get ahead and used the stick and string, wiggling it in front of her when she needed a reminder. After getting to the open area in the paddock, I asked her to back up the entire length of the rope, and with some impulsion. She did that well but I could tell she was having a hard time thinking and focusing. Then, the fireworks started. I asked her to circle and she blew her top. All I did initially (phase 1 mind you) was point, then lift the stick, wiggle and pow, freak out! She bucked, reared, squealed, could barely look at me, and couldn't move forward, just up. This happened for several asks and eventually she moved forward but fast, out of control, bucking, squealing, and she kept trying to turn her hind quarters towards me (totally disrespectful) and I could tell she could not look at me. I've seen this behavior before but not this bad (I still don't know why she was so upset). I maintained my emotions and her dignity and continued to ask her politely, as always, and tried to giver her time to respond, rewarding the slightest try. I did this in the other direction as well intermingling backing and pausing, giving her time to lick and chew. Once she had herself more in control of her emotions, I asked for sideways down the fence line in both directions, some squeeze, and eventually, I asked her to back down part of the paddock, around the corners to and into the barn. We ended on a positive note, both calm, both in a good place. I then remembered to spray all of the horses (all at liberty of course) to chase away some of the bugs.
As I headed to the barn, I started replaying this in my mind. Why did she bite, what was going on? I remembered her trying to bite me yesterday when I rode her and the day before she nipped me. I need to be more aware of my cues to ensure that I am being polite while mounted. I believe that as we progress, she is challenging my leadership but taking it to another level. She's always challenged and now, perhaps she's upped the ante? I am not sure of course, only Lola knows but, I do have a plan. I wrote a long time ago about biting and decided to dig up that post. I am also going to read her horsenality report again, gaining me more insight to strategies working with her. Some of this behavior is exactly the kinds of things (similar anyway) to what Fosse did as a young horse, testing me. I recall a time when he grabbed my finger and chomped me, my arm too, anyhow, backing certainly helped cure that (he was backed up the mountainside, fast and that made him think twice). I never hurt my horses over this but do establish a leadership role using the techniques from Parelli.
Here are a few things to keep in mind about horses and biting:
- Disengage the hindquarters (breaking the hindquarters) to break a brace with a horse taking away the power they have, braciness (start on the ground), be sure to give release, horses are bracey—people usually asking too much too fast (rude or abrupt)
- Backing cures biting—it starts on the ground, horses get into habits, try new things all of the time, sometimes a physical thing--problem usually mental, emotional, or physical
- On the ground, backing cures biting for two reasons: 1. Horse backs out of your proximity 2. You back a horse psychologically, you are moving up in the leadership ladder (the pecking order of horses)
- Horses check you every minute and try to challenge when they can, they try new things to see what your response is
- Punishment does not work with horses because if you watch horses (geldings) two, one bites the other, the other bites back, they will do it all day just for fun, when people smack a horse for biting, you agree to participate in their game so this would not work
- On the horses back, back him because they cannot bite you, if the horse wants to come around, (the horse can get lower jaw caught on the stirrup if you remove your foot from it--especially in an English saddle), get your horse busy and back the horse up, give them something else to do
- You could also, move your foot forward into the curl of their neck (say if you are bareback), they cannot curl their nose and neck around to get to you to bite (just make it difficult for them—they cannot reach)
- Backing cures biting (ask yourself, how do I change their mind about this behavior and make it not fun anymore?)
- If the horse views you as a leader, they would not do this.
- Many considerations, not a simple question, really.
- True leadership with the horse, the behaviors will go away.
Lastly, I love Lola, I love all of my horses, but, I do have to remember that they are horses, not humans, and that I have to be a good leader, a partner, and keep any anthropomorphic ideas in check. It also occurs to me that I need to remember the horse's hierarchy of needs...maybe too many treats during playtime?? HMMM.
Horse's Hierarchy of Needs (IN THIS ORDER)
• Safety = Confidence + Leadership
• Comfort = Release
• Play = Fun + Creativity
• Food = Incentive
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
As the country is swealtering in the heat, bugs attacking, how is one to go outside let alone, enjoy their horses? This week's challenge is to brainstorm remedies for heat and insects and share with others here, on the blog, using the comments section.
For me, I find myself using all kinds of sprays (herbal and not) that don't seem to work well, screen outfits that keep the bugs away but make the horses sweat, and Benedryl for the hives/welts from insect allergies! As for the heat, I have a huge fan in the wall of the barn, open doors for air circulation, and of course, provide a lot of fresh water. Oye, it is a rough summer. I cannot wait to hear all of your ideas! I bet there are differences across the globe...this should be fascinating.
Monday, July 18, 2011
Heather and I had all kinds of time together this weekend, we spent hours in the truck traveling, horse time, boating time, and more. Today, I want to tell you about the horse time. My sister loves my animals and they enjoy her very much as well. On Saturday, we decided to have some horse time. First, I lead her around on Fosse for a pony ride. He was a bit unamused at this but was a good sport. She had a short ride but felt that bareback was not her thing and decided to dismount. Instead, she played at liberty with the horses (and a pocket full of treats), and I rode the horses.