This week, Mistie learned how to Lead by her Front Feet & was Laid Down for the first time.
Leading by the Feet went pretty textbook. Some initial stomping & biting at the rope as she tried to determine what was going on. It took a bit for her to begin to yield to the pressure of the rope around her foot as she was pretty content to hang out with her foot suspended in front of her, but once she figured it out, she understood how to find that release of pressure. With the Lay Down, she was initially pretty resistant on Day 1. A bit of hopping around, but did more up & down with her knee. Once she laid down, she was pretty content to stay there. Day 2's Lay Down went much quicker (see video below).
Both of these exercises are very useful, both in teaching them how to think their way through a bit of a bind. It's rewarding to see them go from pretty unsure about the rope applying pressure to their foot (I cringe imaging a horse reacting in that way if they were to encounter barbwire in that manner) to seeing the light come on about how to find the release & step forward.
In the first part of next week, we'll review Leading by the Front Feet & begin Leading by the Hind Feet. We'll also finally begin transitioning into the snaffle about mid-week. I know I've said this for a couple of weeks, but horses are good at reminding you that your agenda has to be a bit flexible (& I know that Mistie has some experience with a bit already)!
Next week's update will be posted Friday night.