From one extreme to the next this week, weather-wise! We enjoyed a couple of days of warm weather while they lasted & made the best of the other cold, snowy, & windy days.
I couldn't pass up the opportunity on Wednesday, with the almost 70º weather, to give horses baths to wash the winter off. For not having a bath since last fall, Roach stood pretty well for the bathing process (Video 2). We also continued to work on saddling with the back cinch on from the start versus adding it mid-session, as I had last week. There were a couple of times that he was quite bothered by it, as you'll see in Video 3. My goal with getting Roach more comfortable with this is to keep everything nice & easy. I don't need to have him hustling around each & every session to where he associates the saddle with being high energy & reactive.
During yesterday's video (Video 4), the phone that I use to video with must have decided to do a software update or got too cold & shut down, so it missed the last portion of our session. I've introduced jumping up & down next to him to simulate the movement I'll make when I mount & pulling on the saddle to prepare him for me to step in the stirrup. He's had no problem with that from both the ground & the fence. My biggest area of concern is him getting ticklish & tense when he feels my toe bump him in the side as I mount up.
What I would really like to have happen if the weather/ground conditions would cooperate would be to get in the round pen for a full-blown "first ride" scenario where we can walk, trot, & lope with a round pen helper. That's my goal for tomorrow (Saturday). Right now, the round pen has some standing water, but if I feel we can make use of it safely tomorrow, we'll go ahead & do that since I'll have my husband/helper here.
We're moving away from the "walking only" rides in his pen at this point. While it's been a good introduction, getting him moving out safely at the trot & lope is important.
Hopefully, you'll have a chance to watch/listen to the videos before your visit on Sunday. You'll also get an idea of what a not-so-great day (Video 3) & a so-so day (Video 4) looks like for Roach & see how he's still holding on to some reactivity. I got a new mic set that allows me to explain what I'm doing while the camera is rolling. While they are long, mostly unedited sessions, this should give you a better update over a "silent" video.
Next week's update will be posted on Sunday.