So, my trainer is in Mexico, so no "Riding Diary" this week. Instead, it's the story of Jingle's first time being clipped!! As i've talked about, Jingle is a sweat-box, to the point where he was so sweaty after our rides that I would have to wait upwards and past two hours, with a cooler on, for him to be dry enough to be able to put his blanket back on and put back in his stall. Our barn is unheated, so blankets stay on while in, and out, but still - c'mon horse, get it together! So, it was decided he needed a bit of a clippy-clip. I figured a trace clip would be the best, neck and chest - gonzo, and a strip down the side.
A friend of mine, Caron, helped me out and provided me with her clippers. I thought that Jingle would either be an angel, or demonponyboy would show up. That is generally his M.O. - angel, or crazed.
So..... here he is, my partially naked mole rat!
He did quite well with the neck and chest, that was easy-peasy-lemon-squeazy. I was happily surprised, then we started the "trace", and some squirming was happening, and by the time those clippers reached the hind end.... well, his hind legs began to start creeping up. It wasn't even "I'm going to test you" creeping, it was "I'm going to boot you as hard as I can, bee-otch."
So, we took a break, him and I ran around the arena for a bit to clear his frazzled brain. Then we went back at it... but this time we put his "be nice" halter on. (Rawhide nose band rope halter). He was still being a bit of a turd, so we brought out a crop on the advice of another girl there. The second he went to kick my friend, I grabbed his face and she gave him a quick "WHACK!". He tried one or two more times and then finally looked at me, gave out a big sigh, and the clip was finished. By the end of it all, two of my friends were working on cleaning up some of the track lines, and he was looking not-so-bad for his first time. Fur was a-flyin!
"Mahm, what a horribly traumatic experience.... why am I so naked?!"
Jingle's new Weatherbeeta Everest Heavy-Weight to cover up all those nekkid parts now. My mom saw this photo, laughed and said "Look at that eye - poor horse!", Jingle would have to agree.
Then, today I went out and we worked on lunging for the first time! Jingle has been round-penned a ton, but never lunged, and I figure it's something a horse should know. So, I started with him just on a long lead shank and calmly asked him to walk. It took awhile of frazzled trotting to finally walk, but he did. Then I asked him to walk the other way, and again - slightly frazzled, but a walk finally emerged.
I was using a whip to move him and assist him, and he was getting totally frazzled by even the slightest movement of the whip so I stopped and just rubbed him all over with it, and after that he was more accepting of it.
Finally, I hooked him onto a lunge line and just used the tail of the line to move him around, since he wasn't being as pushy and needing to be in my space as he was in the beginning. We worked on the jog both ways, just trying to get him to listen to my vocal aids and really slow down into a nice jog, and he did a couple really nice jogging laps and we quit! I figured that working with the jog would be the best because it's where I'm able to use my vocal cues the most effectively while riding, and it seemed to work well. I'm hoping some lunging and lunge-line work will eventually translate into him listening to vocal cues more. Hopefully the elusive "Woah" is in there.
"GRAIN TIME - stop taking photos and go away now Mahm!"
"Hello There Crazy Lady!"
Overall, two really good days with my boy.