Had a great session with Renegade tonight. I went to the pasture to get him but he didn’t meet me at the gate but I figured that would happen as I had just put a new roll of hay out for the horses. He was too busy eating to bother with me!! I went in and waited by the gate until he noticed me and I turned and walked away. I had to do this a couple of times but then he joined me for some friendly scratching. I haltered him and we left the pasture. Went to investigate the trailer (where I had hidden cookies earlier). He caught on quickly and found them on the tongue, at the entrance and up on the manger. He went right in with no problems at all and backed out when I asked.
We went to the little kiddie swimming pool and played there for awhile. Renegade will do anything possible to not get his feet wet. He even jumped the little pool 3 times to avoid the water. I persisted until he got curious enough to play in the water with his nose then he started pawing the water with his feet. He managed to get us both wet and then he put a foot in. Great and off we go somewhere else!!
To the play pen and I asked him to back through the pool noodles. He backed in nice and relaxed and I followed him in to play friendly game. I took the halter and lead off so we could play at liberty and we had 3 nice circles at the trot in each direction and some really nice changes of direction. We also had 1 circle in each direction at the canter. Played yo-yo, driving, porky, squeeze and sideways – all need more practice: yo-yo - he’s crooked, driving – he wants to leak forward, porky – getting better but occasionally wants to move feet too much, squeeze – is good when I’m close but I need to get better when farther away, sideways - with fence is good but need to get a little more speed – without fence he wants to leak forward – tried a new variation with butt at fence and he leaked forward but it was fun and Renegade was intrigued!! Played stick to me and had a blast – Renegade was “chuckling” with me when I laughed!!
Saddling at liberty went well – he stayed with me the whole time, didn’t try to walk off at all, didn’t move his feet all around like he did at our last lesson. Flight check at liberty went really well so put the hack on him and climbed up on the rail and asked him over for mounting. He stood still for mounting and didn’t move off before I asked. Lateral bends were soft and nice. We went off at a walk and played with walk – stop – back up transitions – walking in my body to go, breathing out and relaxing to stop, backing up in my body to back up. We were pretty good – Renegade moved out when I started “walking” and would stop when I breathed out (had to lift the reins a couple of times but didn’t have to bend to a stop), back ups were a little sticky so need to play with this some more. Did a couple of walk to sideways and it was better than previous session so stopped there and got off. Whooppee…a great session!!Unsaddled and went with Renegade back to the pasture. Very interesting to note – I started walking faster then running and he started trotting right along with me and he picked up the same lead as me!! Our feet were in sync with each other!!! I spent a little time with him and had a little cookie fest then asked him back in the pasture (had to chase the other horses away first to protect my herd of two). Gave all four horses cookies and said goodnight to all with scratches.