"A horse is like a mirror, and it's reflecting what and who you are."

This is just a little diary of my horse life. I teach natural horsemanship and dressage. I am currently working on getting back to L4 Parelli after a car accident and surgery.

I suffered from a fear of failure, as things had not gone according to planned after my time off from my injuries. It had been an paralyzing disability (fear) but my healing is coming along nicely, and I hope to pass my level 4 before the end of 2011.

I don't know where I am going, but I am NOT lost!

I am now reviewing dvd's and books, and blogging my reviews. The link on the left in the categories (DVD Clinician Reviews)will take you straight to it. You will find links to the websites of all dvd clinicians I review and they are located on the left hand side bottom of page of the page. None of the clinicians or trainers I am reviewing, sponsor, endorse or authorize this site. For more info about them please click on thier link.

I hope you enjoy!

Savvy On,

I will be giving Savvy Star Ratings based soley on my opinion of it's value to a parelli student as such

***** Must own

**** Must watch

*** Worth watching, but you won't die without it

** Eh' take it with a grain of salt, you will have to filter alot

* OK, but there is better stuff out there to spend your time and money on

0 stars....skip it, it just isn't worth your time.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Waterhole ritual #3 ~ Taking Territory ~

Well, what can I say, it has been a great couple of weeks.  What I could squeeze in anyways.  I had 2 major problems that needed fixing right quick, and the water hole rituals have been filling a long standing void.  i am completely amazed at the results.  I can't even imagine how great things will be once I rope off a 1-1 corral, for some 1/1 territory sharing.  I am scoping out the lay of my land, for a shady place to hang out, and then going to put in some step in poly posts and some non-electrified hot rope/tape.  I think from there we will make some amazing progress.



I spent 4dys sharing territory with the whole herd, and ending each session with 'saying hello' to each of the herd members.  On day 4, I felt we were ready to take a little territory from Rose.  So I fed them as usual, but a little further away from the fence than normal, to give everyone a place to go, if I needed to chase them off the food.  I was surprised and not surprised at the results.  Again 4 horses in the herd, ranked in this order.  #1 Snookie (alpha) #2 Rose #3 Miyagi #4 Spirit.

I made my way, ambling around, watching to see who was keeping an eye on me. Surprising Snookie did keep an eye on me.  As the alpha, I would have thought she may not think much of me, but apparently she knows, when I am around, I am the boss.  Not so surprising, So did Miyagi and Spirit.  They even moved thier bodies to keep an eye on me.  So I made sure not to direct ANY energy thier way.  And NO shock, that Rose payed NO attention to me what so ever.  NONE.  Sooooo...... I snuck up behind her and chased her off the food, and claimed it for my own.  Now.....everyone else took off too, as it actually took a smack or two with the lunge whip (getting reed soon) to get her to leave.  This bothered everyone else a bit, but they came back real quick.  Rose how ever knew the focus was on her, so when she started to walk back, I glared at her and said "NO, this is my herd, you want to eat with us, you better keep your eye on ME!"

As soon as I felt she had the message, I walked up to her, said hello, loved on her a bit, and then invited her back to the food with me.  No hesitation.  Back on the hay, I left, and ambled about the pasture a bit, again watching to see who was watching and who wasn't.  Everyone but Rose was a bit nervous, but kept an eye on me, so I waited before I snuck up on her and chased her of again.  The rest of them split before I even really got to her, but she needed another smack or two to leave.  They all huddled together, watching me from the corner of the pasture, as I stood in complete ownership of the food.  I fiddle around in it, kicking it around, checking out the fence, completely ignoring them.  "This is my food, I own it, and as the leader, I am not conerned with them.  they did what I asked, so I did not keep pressure on them by staring at them.  After about a minute or two, I gave them an inviting look, and motioned for them to join me.  Everyone came straight away, but Rose.  I think they all realized, that while we are a herd, Rose is the one misbehaving, causing disharmony, and it is she and she alone who must fix it. 

Again I went to her, loved on her, and brought her back to the food.  I ambled around the pasture again, and everyone had thier eyed glued to me, sometimes they kept thier heads down, sometimes picked them up so they could get a better line of sight.  Rose was not to sure about the whole thing, so when I walked closer to her she split.......But every one else stayed.....even Snookie.  That was a complete SHOCK to me.  They DID know, as a herd, that they were accepted by me, the leader.  That we were a herd, and that they were not to blame for Rose's lack of respect.  And since she is the herd bully, I think I may have heard Spirit and Miyagi, snicker a time or two as well.  But, I stood in Rose's spot in the hay, and payed no attention to her at all.  I then walked up to her, loved on her, brought her a handful of hay, and then left her there.  I left it up to her to ask politely to join us.  And guess what???  She DID!!!  She qietly and cautiously approached.  I ignored her and kept fiddling with the hay, just as Snookie does, when she is done "owning" all the food.  She stayed at the outer edge of the hay piles, and I made my rounds petting and scratching everyone, and lastly Rose.

Since that day, Rose has been screaming to me when she see's me.  Lots of soft nickers too.  I am bummed that I couldn't spend anymore time with her since then, but I hit a snag with Cha'cote the next day, and that is when he and I did the "sharing the trailer" thing.  Since he is still not in the herd yet.  I have to focus on him alone.

Progress Cha'cote:

We have played with the trailer almost everyday since the first sharing day.  Sharing it with him, with carrots, getting him to change his mind, that the trailer is just a horse eating box, has been helped emensly, just by hanging out in it, doing nothing.  Well me in it, him poking his nose in, checking me out for some goodies.

I am pleased to say, that he is loading again.....whew!  In fact, I can't stop him from loading now.  Like a nuclear meltdown, nothing on earth is going to keep him from going in.  However, once in, he spins fast and hangs his head out the back.  But that is ok.  One step at a time.  I decided, no, that it is going to be the first thing I do with him, when I take him out of his corral, so he is used to me just getting him and going.  So that when the day arives, when I want or need to get him in the trailer in a hurry, he is used to getting in without a half hour warm up.  He needs to be where he can just trust me no matter what. 

I am just pleased as punch that I found Carolyns water hole rituals, and am champing at the bit waiting for Buck Brannemans ground work dvd's to show up........

On the really cool side, I helped my friend teach her horse how to bow last night.  took somewhere between 10-15 min.  Gotta love those LBI's that will do ANYthing for a cookie!

Savvy On

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I know I am not perfect.....so be nice!