Tuesday, 1 March 2011

My ten step program

I have been following a schedule of ten steps by John Chatterton where the first step was face-up; tick. Part of the face-up was halter training; she forgot. Step two; standing still, kinda and also pull and release; when on lead yes. Step three touching all over; beautiful. Step four backing up; tick. Step five flexing; check at liberty. Step six yielding to pressure; tick. Step seven yielding shoulder and hind quarters; can do shoulder on lead and hind quarters at liberty. Step eight, accepting spooky objects; yes and no and a loud and big NO when the professionals tested her on this. Step nine, leading in position; on the halter yes, otherwise no. Step ten lunging; well without a round yard that’s a no.

But when put to the test, none of it solid; it has to be solid.

After crying on Terry’s shoulder, I understood that leaving Brandy to her own devices for a little to let the domesticated herd (Baileys) work it’s wonders, is successful to the extent that he shows her what she should consider to be ordinary sounds, smells and happenings. But leaving her to her own devices for too long also made her challenge me once more. Because hey, she had been just fine without me and who was I to tell her what to do?

I was right about one thing and that is that we are ready for the next phase. The message coming from all directions once more was loud and clear; Round yard.

Today I’ve spent a little time building a pen, just for the purpose of clipping her on. I’ll be feeding her in the pen and fingers crossed I’ll be clipping her on within the week.

Meanwhile I’ll be building a round pen and “”WHIP””. Despite all evidence possibly to the contrary (when Brandy was put to the test by my professional horse breaking friends) I believe that a lot of groundwork has been laid and we’ll be steaming ahead once I get this baby in the round yard. Watch this space.