Friday, September 5, 2014

You are Not The Boss Of Me

Boss Mare at her bossiest (to another horse):  "You'd best get out of my way"

I haven't done any serious work/play with the horses since spring.  Storm is still in my pocket and wants all the attention I'll give her, but Abbey... Abbey is another story.

After I fed them the other day I sat, and she came up to me.  She remained a little standoffish, though, and I had this impression:  "You think you can stay away for months and just waltz right in here and act like you've been here all along?" 

No, I don't suppose I do.

Today, I put a halter on her.  Not for restraint, but as a way of saying "I want to work with you today."  She was all for that, put her nose right in it, and seemed like she wanted to work with me.  We did some "friendly game", which was cool, I cleaned her feet, cool.

Then I started trying to get her to move her feet.  She yielded her hindquarters the first time, then I tried to direct her and move her.  She was not interested.  It was like I could push her away, but when I tried to draw her back she'd stare at me.

Jewel seemed like she wanted to play, so I went to see if she would, but she just ran off, then I went back to Abbey and Storm (Pick me! Pick me!), who decided it was time to head back to the big pasture (ALL of this was at Liberty).  That's cool but HANG ON... I"m going first.  You're not the boss.  She dodged me; she didn't want to follow me.  I jogged in front of her twice, and then tried to get her to whoa.  Ms. Lethargic suddenly took a huge leap and galloped across the pasture full tilt. 

Huh.  Can't leave that state of affairs.  So I walked out to her and got in front of her.  She turned her back on me twice but I kept moving so I was right in front of her, in an inviting pose.  It took a good ten minutes, but she finally came to me, whereupon I gave her a treat and a good rub and left her be for the day.

Life with a mustang is never boring, and sometimes I think she is smarter than I am.