Sunday, October 31, 2010

Dawn Gives Pie the Hairy Eyeball

This afternoon, I noticed that Pie is beginning to respond to me - if he's in a small paddock he'll come up to the fence to greet me, and if he's out with the geldings, he no longer tries to walk away when I come up to him (which he did the first couple days).  He clearly knows who I am, and that I'm his person.  He's also getting a bit better about picking up his feet - we'll keep working on that.  His leading is now perfect (based on what I want from him) and he's able to easily soften when he backs in hand with a halter.

This afternoon we started working a little bit on his herd-boundness.  I was able to use the fact that he ties very well for this. After I got Dawn from the pasture and got her saddled for our ride, I left her cross-tied in the barn and went to get Pie.  I took Pie and a hay bag with a flake of hay in it to the arena and tied Pie, with the hay bag in reach, at one end, where he was out of eyesight of the geldings.  Then I went and bridled Dawn and brought her out.  Pie called once when Dawn and I were out of sight in the barn - I stuck my head out the door and told him we'd be right out.

Dawn was somewhat taken aback by Pie's presence in the arena.  But she was very good about it, although very distracted by him anytime we passed nearby.  We worked on our softening work at the walk and trot - this is the first real work session we've had in almost two weeks.  Every time we got near his end of the arena, she would prick her ears and focus on him.  Sometimes with other horses she knows she pins her ears and makes faces, but with him, perhaps because they haven't formally met, she was more interested than annoyed.

Pie spent some time trying to stretch down to reach bits of grass (out of reach), fidgeting from side to side, and pawing (only once), and settled down to eat hay, eventually with a leg cocked.  He even peed when he needed to.  By the end of Dawn's work session - we got very nice relaxation at the walk, including walking by a downed section of arena fence (due to the high winds last week) without concern, and less good relaxation at the trot, although not so bad for a horse that hasn't trotted under saddle in so long - he was calmly eating hay with one hind leg cocked.

Tomorrow the weather's supposed to be even nicer, so more horse work ahead!


  1. He sounds like a fast learner. Very nice. It will be interesting to hear how you progress.

  2. Very good, he sounds so great. Dawn cracks me up!
    tried one of your measures today...I have not had anyone to try it with but my mare so we went out for a walk today with the bitless. She reached for the contact with it most times..and when she came up...I applied leg and she went back down again. I never felt like I braced back to myslef, when she started to come up, as she responded so quickly to reaching forward .
    Have to try it with my man! Great exercise!

  3. All good , you have ridden more in the last 2 days I think than I in the last month! I better get to fixing that!

  4. Kate I love the header picture of Pie. He looks like a fun horse and it will be fabulous to read of your relationship developing in the weeks to come. It sounds like Dawn is also going well!!!!. How fantastic for you

  5. He's such a cutie!

    A disposable razor actually works really well for bot eggs - but make sure you have a couple of them, if he's really covered, because they get dull easily. They also make a bot knife which has serrated teeth like a steak knife, but a curved dull end so you can accidentally poke something.

    Or, if you don't mind a few patches, clippers also work.

    Our vet suggests waiting to clean the eggs off until after at least the first heavy frost, when the eggs won't hatch, and also worms at the same time using something with a botacide so that whatever parasite load is there is taken care of. :)

  6. Pie is a smart boy. I like that he is realizing you are his new person. He has only had one owner, so I would think he might be a bit confused. You need to keep telling him he is your boy now. Horses understand what we say far more than we realize.

    Dawn may well be a bit jealous, so she too needs some reassurance. She can be your "girl" and he can be your "boy," conflict there! *G* Glad she worked well for you and seems to be feeling good again.

  7. He's cruising right along, Kate. I envision some pretty fab trail rides in your near future!!

  8. That's a really great idea for basically training two horses at once! LOL I need to get mine used to working near other horses for the shows--I think I'll definitely try this approach!

  9. sounds like its working out with Pie, Im so glad you found an excellent horse, but it soundslike you are gonna be kinda busy for a while with both Pie and Dawn.

  10. I'm glad to hear you and Pie are making a connection! :) He sounds like such a sweetheart!

  11. Very nice. Such a good idea to tie him up while you ride. I like that idea. :)

    I forgot to mention in my comment to your other post you said it was nice weather with the highs in the forties! Are you insane?! LOL That is freezing cold in my books. I was complaining all last week because it was getting down into the sixties hehe.

    I'm glad you're enjoy Pie. And Dawn sounds like she's being good too. :)

  12. As a cowboy horse I expect that standing tied for long periods of time is something Pie is very familiar with. lol!

    Funny how curious Dawn was. Maybe she thinks he's attractive. I sure do. :)



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