Irksome!

I thought you might like an update on our catching protocol.
After a week of herding the mares into a corral and separating the mare I had to exercise, she didn’t get any better at coming in, so she was moved to an individual paddock. It is on the corner of the field track so every time I walked past I made a point of pausing to talk to her; the idea was that she didn’t associate me with being caught all the time. I’ve also stopped wearing my hat to catch her so I look less like I’m about to ride her.

She spends a lot of time looking over the fenceline at other horses, especially if they’re walking past, so when I go to catch her I often stay on my side of the fence and clip the lead rope onto her permanent leather headcollar. This technique seems to work quite well and often I don’t need a treat or bribe.

Sometimes though she stays in the middle of the field. This is when you need a bribe of some sort. You walk towards her in quite a passive way, but stop as soon as she looks at you. She will then walk towards then past you. Now here’s the secret, don’t follow her. She will turn back to come to you, so just wait until she’s approached you then you can offer the bribe and clip the rope on simultaneously. It’s still a relief when I catch her quickly though!

The Rubber Curry Comb

What is the most annoying trait a horse can have?

Today I discovered it – being difficult to catch! I find it so irksome I think it would put me off buying a horse who wasn’t a hundred percent to catch.

I’ve started working with this new mare and on Friday I went to catch her. She took one look at me and cantered off! I’d hardly come near her! She careered around the field merrily, trotting swiftly away from me when I even looked in her direction!

After a bit I got some feed in a scoop but even then I only got close enough for her muzzle to go in the scoop before she ran backwards as I edged towards her neck. In the end her owner managed to catch her. I spent a bit of time trying to bond with her as I lunged her and let…

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