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Lexy Nuesch Horsemanship | Nebraska Horse Trainer | LNH Logo

Roach: September 2

Roach has settled in nicely here. He's figured out the feeding routine & he & Cactus have become quite the pair.

As expected, it's taken a bit to get Roach caught when it's time to begin work. Because of that, we spent a few days working on Approach & Retreat to where I could rub his face & neck without the expectation of being caught.

He's got a curious disposition, which is great to have in a horse.

Once I had a halter in my hand, he knew what I was after. He'd allow me to rub his face, but he had no interest in having me walk around to his neck.

When a hard-to-catch horse was concerned, I used to use the "move your feet" method. Make the right thing easy (facing me/allowing to be caught) & the wrong thing difficult. However, I found that this made both the horse & I dread the catching process each day. Sure, that method works okay for a few horses, but for the majority, it wasn't reliable. They figure out they can outrun me in the larger pens. These days, I'd rather use positive reinforcement &/or the help of a smaller pen, especially in the early stages.

To help with this, Roach will start out in a smaller pen where I can walk in & catch him as he gets with the program & learns that catching doesn't involve moving away at the sight of the halter & that it's no big deal while utilizing positive reinforcement methods. Eventually, he'll be moved to a bit bigger pen & eventually back out with the herd.

Once we were in the round pen, he did consider jumping out a couple of times. That's not unusual for those nervous horses with minimal handling & will continue to improve with each session.

He was quite nervous about Desensitizing to the Lead Rope & Stick & String initially & did want to kick out at the rope around his hind legs but soon found out there was nothing to get worked up about. We touched on Yielding the Hindquarters enough to have a bit of control, but we'll focus on that more next week when he's more comfortable with the Desensitizing exercises.


Next week, we'll continue to grow more confident about being caught & continue groundwork in the round pen.


Next week's update will be posted on Friday.

I do my best to get these updates posted in a timely manner, but it's not uncommon for me to be outside until after dark, depending on the weather, my schedule, & who gets worked when so updates will sometimes be posted quite late in the evening. Don't be alarmed if you don't see your update right away. In rare cases, I may have to push them until the next morning, but I'll reach out & let you know if so.

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