Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Water jump

Yesterday was a fabulous day weather wise and Parelli wise - or savvy wise.

The day before (Sunday) I had taken Garbo down to the large water jump at Royal Oak - on previous occasions he had just avoided looking at it - but on Sunday three other horses went in for a play Both Sunday and Monday were really hot days) - but still on Sunday he just looked and watched and took it all in. I walked around the edge but didn't ask him in, then we went home.

Had a great ride before that - we were doing point to point - Garbo offered canter and his canter is so much nicer now - this was all in our new hakamore. He enjoyed the game and so did I!

So Monday - I was going to ride but it was so hot that Michelle said she was going to take Taz to play in the water jump so we went along too. After Taz going in a couple of times and making big splashes I could see Garbo really wanted to go in but wasn't sure how. He was a little unconfident.

I asked him in (once) and then waited while he thought about it. I just waited calmly not too focussed on him, until he turned away or stopped trying - then I would back him up a couple of steps quietly and ask him again..... he would look at the water, sniff it - pretend to nibble the grass on the edge while looking at Taz playing in it.... then we would go round the side and say hi to Taz.... so then I would ask him again.... at one point he got his nose in.... (wet) - it was so funny watching him think.... he was blinking and chewing and licking...... and gradually his confidence came back.

He never once panicked which was great.

After about 5 or 6 minutes of this I asked him again and I stood on the very edge of the ledge on a piece of grassy mud - and he went straight in.

I took his halter and rope off and sat on the grass in the sun and watched him and Taz play in there for 20 minutes. Taz thought she could make a big splash until Garbo started pawing in the water - first with one foot - then the other... it was so funny.....

After a while they both got out and we played with them at liberty for a while and then washed them off and I took Garbo home - he loaded straight away - he was so cool.

I didn't ride but it was a huge achievement today - first time in the water jump.! All without losing his confidence or trust or dignity.

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