Introduction to ground driving

This 8 year old, 15.3hh registered Appaloosa gelding is in rehabilitation as he gains weight lost due to EPSM. He will be started under saddle and available for adoption.

Introduction to ground driving

Postby Juliane on Mon Jul 30, 2007 1:05 am

When Ally came out on Friday to help me work with the horses, we decided to work with Shadow as well as Class. While I spent the time tacking up and warming up Class, Ally got to know Shadow. She spent some time doing some ground work with him, including introducing him to the carrot stick. He took everything in stride, though was put off by having to maintain his space from Ally.

I tend to let Shadow come into my space for reassurance, as he is quite needy at this time. I am working on making sure he knows how much of a distance he should keep from his handler, and that he shouldn't crowd, but it's not something he's good at yet. Which had him a bit worried when Ally kept moving him out of her space. Silly guy!

When we traded horses, I took over working with Shadow. I was hoping that I could work on putting weight in the stirrups - so I decided to saddle him with my regular-tree saddle, my Circle Y. However, it didn't fit Shadow well at all. It was too small for him, so I decided not to do any weight bearing exercises yet.

I did, however, introduce him to ground driving. His first reaction was an explosion, as when I dropped one of the driving lines over the saddle, to the other side, then walked to that side and slipped it over his rump, he startled and bolted, bucking the entire length of the arena. It was my mistake as I didn't prepare him for what I was about to do, and did desensitize him to the ropes first. Bad me! It's obvious that we have some desensitizing work to do!!!

However, he was exception after that first minor incident. He caught on to the idea of ground driving very quickly and within moments, we were zig-zagging all around the arena. He's very soft and light in the reins, making it easy to work with him. Tomorrow I may ground drive him around the race track and see how he does :)




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