Monday, October 19, 2009

Leaving for the EMM in the morning...

I have never used clippers on a horse - EVER! If I needed to clear a very small area for a bridle path, I used scissors, other than that, they stayed natural. Well, we are getting into the fuzzy coat season and you could not read the brand, so I clipped it! Not too bad for my first time! I think a drunk BLM person applied the starts out fat at the top, and gets skinnier as it goes down his neck. I am not going to blame Copper for moving - it is not his fault! Ha ha! It is kind of interesting how all of the mustang brands here are applied differently.

Here is his brand. There is a rubbed part of mane right over the brand, so I am going to open the mane like a window so it shows. It looks neat in my head...just hope it looks neat on him.

What is there to say about the past three weeks? Mud, Mud, and more Mud! The sun did not shine, it was cold, and nothing would evaporate. So I did not do much of anything with Copper other than visit and throw my coat around him once in a while. The arena in the next town was still a mess too.

Here is my summer experience. I had a lot of irons in the fire so there was a lot of commitment overlapping going on. Needless to say, I was busier than heck! I had my first two TIP horses that went to their adopters. Wyoming took the scenic route from one adopter who still loves him, to another possible adopter (too muddy to ride him, but he has made friends with Aaron the rescue TB). A lot of time went into both of them. Then Copper came in the picture and as afraid as he was, there was a lot of promise there. We did have some dry times, but in our barn lot area there were still a lot of wet spots - clay shelf with slick stuff on top just does not drain well. We are looking for a solution for next year.

Copper taught me a lot. I could not figure out why he did not get things as quickly and comfortably as the others. Then Brian said something that made sense. Copper was just like Tiger was - reacted to everything. But when Tiger finally settled down, he let me know it was time to move on to advanced maneuvers, like letting me sit on him, then actually ride him! That was a huge WOW! moment for me. The thing is, Tiger was here a lot longer so I did not push him. I only have a short amount of time with Copper, so I was trying to push a little bit.
Then I learned that was not a good idea. This is when I learned about Introver/Extrovert/Right Brain/Left Brain. Another WOW! moment for me! So, I worked on repeat, repeat, repeat, and he will let me know what will work and when.

There was a period of time I did not think I would even get on Copper. Then it happened...I did it! And I was so darned excited! We did get to 'ride' a few times in the pen before the monsoon hit. He is still reactive and afraid of things, but I have noticed he deals with it better than he did a couple months ago. All he needs is someone to be patient and give him the time he needs. It will take a while with him. I do think once he gets comfortable around other horses with riders attached, his progress will zoom right along.

Tomorrow morning we are getting ready to leave for Tennessee for the Mustang Makeover - Eastern Stampede version. We will spend two nights with friend and fellow trainer, Greg Reynolds, and we will play with our horses for a day and a half, then early Thursday morning head to TN. As of now, I am planning on doing the in-hand part of the competition, and walking him thru the riding part for the experience. I do hope to get on him while we are down there, but I will wait to hear what he is telling me. I am very excited...being around so many mustangs and awesome trainers is like some people going to Hollywood and meeting Brad Pitt! These trainers are my movie stars!

I have already been shedding some tears...adoption day is going to be very hard, but I have to go into it believing that he will get a wonderful adopter who will take the time he needs, and give him a great job! He is such a sweet guy and very social. I KNOW he is going to do amazing things someday! Well heck, he already is spite of his reactions, we played with the lariat rope, he handled the stick and string great, saddling is still kind of jiggy but we get there, he is letting me pick up his feet while standing still, we took a lot of walks and stepped over logs and walked thru brush (ooohhhh...ticklish!). He never did like the bag on the end of the stick. Don't blame I did not push it. He drops his head most of the time when I ask, and he flexes pretty good too. So yeah, he is amazing to trust me enough to accept all of this. I know there was more, but I am drawing a blank.

Will keep you all posted...

Until later...Karen and Tripp who has little burrs in his forelock and mane. Ugh!


Kirstin's Mustang Project 2008 said...

Hey Karen,
Wishing you the best of luck at the show this weekend. Copper is exactly where he needs to be, we all know that each of these horses are different and we have to allow them the time that they need. Push to hard and you probably will be missing something, so you have done exactly what you should have done and you've done it on Copper's time schedule. That will make for a better trained horse in the long haul.
Adoption day is hard, I still cry over Tuff but knowing he went to a great home is very comforting.
Take care, be careful and have fun.

mkyamse said...

Good luck and have fun! I will be thinking of you guys this weekend. =)

Amber said...

We're holding good thoughts for you and Copper! Thank you so much for sharing his progress with us ... it's been a wonderful experience