Miss Emi got to take her monthly field trip to NDF today. It was fun to get her out and about despite some nasty weather. She hauled nicely up to the barn. When we got into the arena she was acting a bit crazy because she knew I was going to let her go. I made her walk a lap around (and behave) before I let her go. You can see a short clip of her playing in the arena on her Facebook page.
|Sporting a cute running braid, which she promptly shook out when let go in the arena|
She only played for 5 or 10 minutes before she was done. I caught her and we practiced her manners in hand. We walked, trotted, halted, backed, and I asked her to move her shoulders away from me (haunch turnish). She's learning whoa and halting nicely from my voice. Then when I'd turn around, walk towards her and tell her to back, she backed nicely with no pressure from the lead or me touching her. With her working well in hand we exited the arena to go get Benny. As we headed back over to the barn I got the idea to practice some water crossing with her. We played across a small ditch in a nearby field and then stomped through all of the puddles in the parking lot. We got soaked!
|Pony torture on a terribly wet day!|
Once I got Benny ready we went back over to the arena. April was there to help from the ground but we didn't end up requiring any assistance. I had the chain on Emi which made her much more responsive. Benny was more relaxed today than the previous time. We had one spook (from Emi) but I reacted much more quickly and immediately pushed Benny forward, like I should have done last time. It worked great and I got them straightened right out. It's certainly not Benny's favorite activity but he can do it. I have to be sure to ride proactively and I know things will continue to get easier as we work on it. Next time I take Emi up I hope we can head outside for a little practice. Summer trail riding should be an adventure!
|Pardon the wet pony...we had just been out playing in the puddles.|
|Emi and I tell Benny he's a good boy. Benny says, this is stupid.|