Saturday, March 13, 2010

The morning continued

I was up before the sun and walked down to what looked like a lake of fog stretching ahead covering the valley.

The following video is just under 5 minutes long. It is the last part of my 15 minute walk down to see the horses and then I approach their corral. The horses see me approach but I'm holding a video camera and being silent so Patrik isn't quite sure it's me. He does some interesting head bobbing and snorting trying to determine if I'm a threat. It's times like this that lead me to believe that sound is the primary way horses precisely identify potential threats in their surroundings.

This next video is 11 minutes long. I let the horses out of the corral into the pasture. When they are done saying their hellos and getting their first scratches I go to check out the buckeye tree and find that Sofi has followed me hoping for some more scratching. It is fascinating to watch how she tries to tell me just where she wants to be scratched. Watch her facial expressions and the soft/happy look in her eye when I find the right spots.

The scratching time I think is the single most important part of building a good relationship with a horse. This part shouldn't be skimped on. It's a very simple joy that we can give to horses. Of course many horses are shut down enough that they aren't ready to show how much they enjoy it. Keep trying new spots, different pressures, and learning to watch for their feedback about where they'd like it. Of course this should be done with no tack and no time constraints in a large area. If you have a very shut down horse try it in the middle of the night.

After Sofi has had her fill of scratching I take some more video of Patrik and Sundance grazing and find a friend in the pasture.

What an amazing morning.

I have good news about the two neighbor horses...

There is a horse rescue organization in Auburn, CA called The Shiloh Foundation who will take the neighbor horses and find them a good home together. Cheryl will be here tomorrow morning to pick them up. It is a huge relief for all of us involved. I am thankful that there are people who make it their life's work to take care of those in need. If you are able to help these horses find a great forever home please visit the website at the link above.

Versano, looking for treats, love, and understanding!

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