Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sometimes You Just Gotta Back Up

This morning I looked out the window and saw this...
It made me giggle! Talk about taking in some sun.

The wind howled today and it had a bite to it, so I figured it was just a good day to groom. This horse, VooDoo has become uncomfortable about having his feet handled...
(Now isn't this a prime example of the judging term, long from eye to muzzle?)A couple of times I thought if I could just get a hold of a foot and hold on he would get over it and stand up. He's not terribly strong, not like Roan Dog, who could just take his foot away without a struggle. He's been trimmed before and been okay, not great, but he would stand for a couple of nips, I'd set his foot down, give him a second and then get another couple of nips. The last couple of times I have tried to do that, he has tried to come over the top of me, has struck viciously at me and used his teeth to back it all up. NOT fun!! Today I was determined to get control of him and get that foot and hold it. In such cases, I usually use a leadrope wrapped around the foot and use the leverage to hold the foot until they quit struggling. This way I am not bent over and can use my body to hold their shoulder up. It works slick and I thought it would be cool to show you guys. You know us girls need to use our smarts, cause brute strength is not on our side.;-)

Such was not to be the case, cause as I started grooming the tall kid, I started to realize just how uncomfortable he was with ANY contact. So I just kept grooming...and grooming...and grooming. I used all the brushes in the arsonal. He's a nice horse. He wants to get along. He's been a slow developer mentally, which is why he is 4 and I am just now comfortable going ahead with breaking him out. I finally slowed down MY agenda long enough to realize he is still pretty immature and we need to back it up a few steps until he is comfortable with just being handled again. He is very uncomfortable just having his legs brushed, so it only stands to reason that he would be uncomfortable handing over that foot for trimming. Sometimes it don't matter how much you have already done with a young horse, if they get something in their brain or are rushed out of their comfort zone, they can kind of fall apart.

By the time my arms gave out from grooming, he was licking his lips...
He should come back pretty quickly. You can see everything clicking in his head. It's just going to be an everyday handling, grooming and messing with process.

Shooter has settled into living at mom's really well. He is getting to know everyone through the fence. The mares are all out of heat now, so he has stopped screaming at them and reverted back to his normal, docile self. The vet's office cancelled his gelding day, they had some stuff come up. It was rainy, cloudy and muddy those few days anyway. Not a good time to geld. I'm shooting for this next week...
I love how this colt turns around, he just gets up underneath of himself and rolls back over his hock...it's so natural. M.U.S.T get him gelded soon or I might change my mind.

7 comments:

Mikey said...

Looking at that pic of Shooter, I'd be tempted to keep him intact too :) He's going to be all kinds of fun to ride :)
I hear ya on backing up. Still working the exact same bugs out of Sugarfoot. Picks up front feet pretty good, but not good enough. Still goosey about brushing. Every day, same thing until she's over it and we get to move on. Glad you wrote a post on it, it's important to make the basics solid.

City girl turned Country Girl said...

Busy, busy, busy!! I hear ya about the arm giving out!! You can only do so much before it feels like jelly LOL!! Can't wait to hear if you change your mind LOL JK!!

Stephanie said...

Pat is kind like that in the way of being immature - he is maturing it's just taking a long time. And if he get a long enough break Joe has to back up and to the same things - backs up finds a comfort zone and starts again from there.

Shooter is a looker! Studs can be such a time consuming pain though!

Danielle Michelle said...

I'm a big fan of the rope trick with the legs too. Keep with him! Nothing like a mentally underdeveloped 1000lb animal to keep you on your toes!

Gosh - I'm fighting over whether to have my barrel prospect gelded too. He's a looker and just started to show some interest in the ladies. He was very well behaved though and respectful of me when he got to nickering at my mare while I ponied him and i gave hima good tug. So maybe I'll hold off a bit longer...

It's always a dilemma...

SunnySD said...

Love that long face! And Shooter - he's sure a handsome boy. Looking forward to the rope/foot pics - I've seen it done, but haven't tried it myself, and it's sure be a good trick to know how to do.

Trailboss said...

Love this post. Especially the pic of the tounge out! lol

kdwhorses said...

He was taking in the sun!

Love Shooter~I can't believe he is already that age! Just seems like yesterday he was born!