Thursday, October 6, 2011

Secrets and Revelations!!

Played with Renegade online last night and it took a little doing to get him engaged and paying attention. He's good at the things he likes to do and offers them readily, like splitting himself in half over a log; now that he's learned it, he thinks it the coolest thing ever just like he LOVES sideways to and away over things.

We have been playing with the circling game for what seems like forever without much progress and without engagement from Renegade. He made it absolutely clear it was NO FUN for him by tipping his nose to the outside, throwing his shoulder into the rope, and leaving. He comes back readily when I ask and comes at a trot or canter so I know it's a game and he's trying to make things more interesting for him so I've been working on myself to become more provocative.

When I sent him out on the circle, I payed attention to fundamentals like backing up straight then waiting before sending and asking for a snappy depart in the send. I also concentrated on having Renegade keep his nose tipped in instead of out of the circle and when he broke gait, I immediately had him change direction. We got pretty active, energetic and it wasn't really pretty but Renegade suddenly became interested in what we were doing. After about 7 or 8 changes of direction, Renegade gave me two really nice canter circles to the left which is his easier side. When going to the right, I was hoping for 1/2 lap at the canter but Renegade suprised me with 1-1/2 laps at the canter.

For the changes of direction, Renegade would, in his LB way, not want to look at me so I could draw him for the change so I would go to his zone 5 for a bit of driving game. Amazingly, his ears would perk up, he'd look at me with a really interested look, turn to face me and I'd send him off in the opposite direction. He loved it and got his little studly look on and was nickering, enjoying the "play"!!

Rather than drill on that, we moved on to circling with an obstacle which happened to be a log that is laying down in my pasture. Renegade offered canter circles and maintained gait over the log and even gave me a couple of nice flying lead changes to boot!!

Called it quits after this as it was getting dark and I still wanted to spend a few minutes of undemanding time with Renegade before bringing him in for the night and giving him his feed and hay. Renegade's demeanour was soft and quiet, he even allowed me to rub his face all over and this is something he's never enjoyed.

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