A horse is a neverending project, like a mound of clay. It can be rough, stiff, coarse, or supple, smooth, polished. It can be wild, barely handled, green broke, kid broke, or highly refined, or even “dead broke”. It can be all that, and everything in between, and most of these many shades of grey have to see with how they are approached and trained.
When I got Dandy, 4 months ago, he was a coarse chunk of coal. Chopped off the mine with a pick, zero smoothness or refinement to it, but I could see through the rough outter layer the purity and shine that laid beneath. Now the outter edge has been smoothened. It’s not polished, and won’t be for months, or even years, but he has acquired an education based on rock solid foundations (or so I believe) that will last him his lifetime.
A moment of grace, this very morning. Riding around in nature on a 2 yr old horse you have broken in yourself is one of the greatest gratification I can think of. Wow, that was cool ! Look at those tiny, pony like, ears…
We’ve been working hard, 4 times this week, on getting a proper bend in the circle, ridden. Actually it eluded us because it wasn’t an installed from the ground as I thought it was. When pushing and pulling and “getting big” in the saddle didn’t help, I just asked myself where I’d left a hole, went back to the drawing board, on the ground, and established several baby steps, one after the other. Then I put them back together, and TA-DA, we had our correct bend. Well, maybe not “TA-DA”, progress is never that clearcut on a horse, but 3 sessions in and it’s installed and reliable. Up to me to re-enforce it over and again, until it becomes second nature.
You can see my black, 14ft leadrope rolled over my saddle horn. That’s because I experimented a bit throwing it around from the saddle, lasso style, but not behind handy with a lariat I chose to use my rope instead. I’m right handed, and very bad with my left, which caused the poor colt to get (not too badly) whacked in the face a couple of times, but he was gracious about it and chose to act like it was further “desensitizing”. Lol
Today’s ride. We faced some challenges but raised up to them and conquered them all. A wonderful feeling and a true partnership. Upon buying this colt I committed to riding him outside nearly quite a bit, and I’m determined to do just that. I’m absolutely convinced of the benefits of trail riding on a horse’s mind, to keep him fresh, improve his confidence, and deepen your relationship
It’s been very hot for the past two days, so Dandy got a shower after each ride. He’s slowly getting used to the process and putting up better and better with it, the up side being able to roll in the dirt and create a nice insect-defeating crust !
So here we are, 4 months later after his purchase, and I consider him “broke”. Far, very far from trained, but mastering the basics and ready to explore more routes and disciplines. Reining will be one, Extreme Cow-Boy races another. After all, with a willing partner, the sky is the limit !