Session #1 - around 4:00 p.m.
Little Man was way out in the back of the pasture; I couldn't see him, so I don't know exactly where he was. But I called him and he came up, coming right into the pen with me. Today I decided we were going to take it easy. I took out the soft brush, and had him target it a couple of times. Then I brushed both sides of his neck, his shoulders, his withers and a few inches down his back, and his sides just a bit past his shoulders. He moved around some, so I didn't push it. I stroked the brush on his cheeks, down his face, and up his forehead. He didn't like it on his forehead, so I clicked for his letting me just rest the brush on his forehead.
Then I went back to targeting. I stepped away and had him walk up to touch the brush. I held it high, to the side, and low. I experimented with putting it on the ground and asking him to touch it, but he kept trying to touch my hand. I did click for movement towards the brush on the ground.
In between I rubbed his forehead, and petted and stroked him. When we were done, I petted him for a minute, then gave him a peppermint treat.
Session #2 - around 6:30 p.m.
Little Man wasn't too far out, and I walked out and sat on a dirt mound. He walked up to me, and stretched out his muzzle, but didn't get right up to me. He wasn't sure why I was sitting down, I guess.
I had him target the lead rope, and I worked with draping it over his neck and crest, even his withers once. Each time he pie eyed it, and appeared relieved to hear the click when it came. He moved away several times, and he stood several others. I also worked with looping the rope over his muzzle. He did much better with that, and was pretty calm.
In between I petted and stroked him, and patted his shoulder. When we were done I dropped the lead rope and just talked to him and petted him a bit. I rubbed behind his ear, and he angled his head so I could get just the right spot! I gave him a couple of peppermint treats before I left.
Teaching a Horse to Talk
6 years ago