Thursday, September 11, 2008

It was a TUFF day! :)

I'm such a dork. (see title)

Anyway, Mondays are my day off so I had a hankerin to go visit Tuff Tuff and work with him a bit. It was a pretty nice day, a little hot, so thats why I put on my short shorts and tank top. And of course paired them with my way cute socks and sneakers, haha. (I've already learned lunging in flip flops = bad idea!) So I took myself out there and called him. Then I went to the shed/barn and got the lunge line, whip, lead rope, brush, fly spray, PHEW, oh and a mane and tail comb, lol. (I think I need a tack box!)

I got out there and didn't see him, so I called again, and then I saw him making his slow way up the lane. I was kinda dissapointed because he didn't call back to me. And then I heard it! His cute little high pitched whinny, hehe.

Bowser came out too, as you can see in my top pic. The two of them touching noses. Tuff does really well with dogs. (as you will see in the video, he doesn't mind them running around him at all!) I think its because the pasture he was born in was right next to TWO houses that each had at least 4 dogs. All of which roamed the pasture at will. So he's been there done that, lol.

Anyway, he's only been lunged in the area right in front of his pasture, so I knew being in a new place could be interesting. But nah, not with mr Tuff Tuff! After I brushed him down real quick and combed his mane and tail a bit, we waltzed over to the larger area out by the driveway, to the side of the in laws house. (who were all miraculously not at home, strange) Along the way we stopped and sniffed various things, trailers, tires, stump grinders, etc. He did very well. I let him out on the lunge at a walk and he was lazy of course, and REALLY wanted to eat grass, but was a good boy. No spooks or freak outs.

We trotted quite a bit. But when I went out there I had in my mind that I wanted to try out his canter that day for the first time. I was a little apprehensive, see as it was his first time doing it. I wasn't real sure he would know what I was asking for. (I even researched about it on the internet! haha) I just wanted it to be a good experience for him.

Well he did fabo! As if there was any doubt! ;) I decided to use the kiss, which is universal, and what I'm used to. So I first got him in a good working trot and then in one of the 'corners' started flicking my whip pretty vehemently and kissing and PLOP there he went! Only one or two strides mind you, but thats all I was really wanting to begin with. I let him trot another half circle and asked for it again in the same place and he did even better, and actually went quite a ways before I brought him back to a trot and then walk. And of course went over and loved on him, he was like, ladee da. Whatever.

Now for the bad news. WRONG LEAD. Every time! UGHHH. Now, I dunno, I wasn't even worried about that part! I just figured him being on a circle and all he would have no reason NOT to be on the right lead. I've seen him get both just fine in the pasture. Well, to the left for sure he didn't get any of them. And if anything, he is left handed. (I did maybe 3 or 4 transitions) Now when I reversed him and went to the right, he MAY have stayed on the right lead and got that one, but by that time I was second guessing myself, and also my video had run out so I can't watch that either. Bummer. Next time I will have someone out to help video and watch.

So! A baby thing? Or will this be something I'm going to have to do some serious work on? I HOPE it was just a ahh, first time on the lunge, what do I do with my legs??? thing. Any ideas on what do to do help him get it? Bigger circle? Smaller circle? I know what your typically supposed to do is keep pulling them down from it until they get the correct, and then let them go on it. But with it being his first time I was very hesitant to reprimand him for something he didn't know he was doing. Ya know? So next time I might try a bit harder to get the right one, but still not sure what the best way of doing that IS.

Any help is greatly appreciated!

Overall I was very pleased with him. I was expecting maybe at least ONE acrobatic maneuver, maybe a spurt of speed, etc. NOTHIN! Fine by me! I'm sure I will see this at a later date of course, but I'm glad he was so ho hum about it. He came right back down to his old plodding walk afterwards like it was nothing. :) He really wasn't hot either! Not really blowing or sweaty at all. I WAS! lol. So he must be in pretty decent shape. Could be all that chasing his uncle and momma have been doing to him lately, lol.

Here's some of my favorite stills from the video.






Thats not all we did though! I've been wanting to give him a 'real' bath now for some time. Well the opportunity presented itself and I took it! He did that very well also! (Yall can't tell I wuv him can you, lol)

It was a bit awkward trying to give him a bath and keep him from eating grass, etc, but I got it done. There was just no where to tie him up where the hose would reach. I tried to get him pretty wet while the water wasn't COLD yet, but not burning up either (you know how hot water in a hose is on a summer day!) and he didn't move, just wanted to drink from it lol. You could tell he wasn't thrilled when you got around his hind end, but he is MUCH better then he was. Last time I got him wet he would pick up each hind leg and hold it, lol. This time he stood but for a few times.

He felt and looked SO GOOD afterwards, all silvery and silky, love it. After I was done I let him graze in the grass in front of the pasture, he LOVED THAT! I just left him there while I put things up, gave them water, etc. He was very happy.

So! Another 'first' thing to cross off my list! Next is his first trailer ride. The BIL and FIL are thinking of buying a 2 horse soon maybe, so that would be good. I'd like him to preferably not be full grown for his first time, lol. After that riding! Fun fun! I don't forsee that being a problem at all. We need a round pen first though! Even I don't trust him that much, haha.

Oh, I just remembered. I also tried my bitless bridle on him, but sadly its still too big.


Here's a few more pics, of course!

This was before his bath, after lunging. I sat down on the bench to adjust the bitless bridle and he thought my knees were very interesting.
The colors are kinda ick in this one, but you can still see how perty he is ;) And wet!

Grazing happily.
Other side! Still grazing happily, lol.

On to the videos!! Here is our lunging one:


Lunging Tuff from Britnieann on Vimeo.


And a bit of his bath, just the first bit. Yeah, he does look ribby, don't worry, we are working on that!

Bath Time! from Britnieann on Vimeo.


Some other good news, the little BIL had a great idea. He decided to divide the big pasture up, so that the colts could eat in peace on one side, and the older horses wouldn't be able to bother them. So I was able to walk Tuff out there and introduce him to it the other day. They were both very happy! Skip even TROTTED by himself down the hill to the grass! Haha, I was also pleased that Tuff (who I had on a lead line) stayed calm and behaved while his buddy went flying past him, he didn't mind at all. I walked him up the fence line a bit and then let him go. He went straight to eating of course. Here's a pic of him from then:



So thats all for now! Its taken me all week to get this thing published, lol. Have a great weekend everyone!
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