Before I worked with Dawn, Maisie and I took a very brief trail ride - her hinds seem a bit less sore today but we won't do anything more than short walks under saddle until she's completely sound again. The bugs were so bad, despite sprays, that I decided not to work Dawn under saddle, but just to work on the lunge. So we groomed, put on the fuzzy nose halter with the lunge line and went to the arena. We walked, and I asked for whoa. She sloped into a whoa after a bunch of steps. As soon as her feet stopped moving, I clicked and walked over to treat her. After a couple of repetitions, she got the idea - Dawn is no slouch in the brains department. After only a few minutes, I had an immediate halt within a stride in both directions.
So, since things were going so well, we did the trot. Immediate halts in both directions - I'm not talking sliding stops here, just nice halts quickly executed. So, canter: why not? She cantered beautifully in a relaxed manner in both directions, and instantly gave me the halts I wanted in both directions. I gave her a jackpot of treats and praised her lavishly, and we were done with our work. I think tomorrow we'll work on improving the quality of the halt - its straightness and squareness. Clicker will be excellent for that too. The best thing was that Dawn herself seemed very pleased - not just with the treats, but with the fact that she could successfully respond and do what I asked. I walked home with one of those silly grins on my face!