Tuesday, March 24, 2015

24th March, 2015 Not Plain Sailing

Three women on the ferry to the Isle of Wight this morning to work with three Shetland ponies, Mairie, Mollie and Pie. We were picked up at the port by Jane's husband David who warned us that his lawn looked like a gymkhana and he was right.

We needed to do some more pre-starting work with Mairie who will hopefully be ridden by Jane's grandchildren this summer. Bridle on, saddle on and around the agility course which includes a bit of cross-country.

Mairie's daughter Mollie also seems to like jumping and is frightened of nothing.

Pie came along for the fun, taking no notice of the other ponies and concentrating on his own work.

Jane's horse agility course comes mainly courtesy of e-bay. Easy and relatively cheap to find colourful objects this way.

Like a little police horse, Mollie gets used to the tambourine...

...and Pie is an old hand with the umbrella...

 ...while Mairie considers a new career as a drum horse.

What a hoot...anything I can do...

...Mollie can do better, achieving a little toot through her nostrils.

On a more serious note we needed to do some more work with Mollie's feet because she is still pretty reflexive and kicks out when asked to pick the back ones up. We felt that she was old enough to understand a bit of clicker training and this seemed to work very well. Much more focus with one click (no treat) to ask her to wait and keep doing what she was doing, and a click, click, click and treat to say well done!

"Thank you for the clicker training, I was most impressed with how quickly Mollie responded to you with the training. Mollie also proved to be quite the little show jumper and I think Natasha enjoyed working with her. Really pleased with how calm Pie was with everything and how well he worked with Tracey, she clearly won his heart seeing he is normally very dubious of people he doesn’t know vey well. Mairi was a star with her saddle & bridle.and all the obstacles. I think she passed the test to be a ‘drum horse’ but maybe the full orchestra was a bit much on day one !! A huge thank you for such a successful day."JB
"I'm trying to work out how you call this 'work'!!!!" Sarah B

An overview: that's the sea in the background