Saturday, June 14, 2008

In Hindsight

I started this blog six months ago, and while working with my horses today I thought about how thankful I am for this horse blogging community. I think that without the support and advice of my blogging buddies, Gabbrielle would not be as far along in her training as she has shown today.

As I easily cleaned out each of her hooves, I thought of Mrs. Mom. Her advice and encouragement helped both Gabbrielle and I to get past some rough patches when it came to picking up Gabbrielle's feet. I thought how proud Mrs. Mom would be to hear that Gabbrielle also picked up her own feet to gently offer them to me when I was clipping her feathers.

Another stumbling block has been teaching Gabbrielle to move forward while on the driving lines, as opposed to turning to face me and getting tangled in the lines. Today she not only drove forward at a walk and a trot, turned left and right, but she went over a small jump. I detached the long lines from the halter, attached them to the bit, and she quickly adapted to the pressure on her mouth. The transition from halter driving to bit driving went smoothly. I have a lot of people to thank for help with the ground driving: Browneyed Cowgirls, Sue, onthebit, Rising Rainbow, and Shirley.

There are also many people who helped with trailer training: Ann, Browneyed Cowgirls, Barngoddess, Farm Girl, Shirley, and Lulu. I hope to practice that sometime soon and see if we've improved in that arena since our last effort. Chris Cox presented a clinic on trailer training at the Horse Expo, and I hope to try out what I learned from him and report on it. I know exactly what I did wrong last time. I didn't spend enough time on backing out once she got her feet up. Instead I just pushed her forward, only to discover that I couldn't back her out once she was loaded.

Yes, I'm still not done with my series on the Horse Expo. I just wanted to interject with a big thank you to my blogger buddies. Each of you can take some credit for the progress of my little filly's training.


Mrs Mom said...

Please give that wonderful, beautiful filly of yours a very big special rub from us, and tell her what a good lady she is! Now, be SURE you also get a big rub in return- advice is only as good as the one who applies it. If it was not done, the best advice in the world would be just words to fill an empty place. A very BIG kudos goes to YOU NM< for being such a great Horse Mom there, and doing such a good, consistent job with your animals.

Keep it up! I love reading how you are doing there!

Abraham Lincoln said...

Well, I come to see the pretty horses and the horse you call Gabbrielle I would call Gabby after that tennis player named Sabatini. Remember her?

Horses are nice or as nice as dogs and I like dogs and horses about equal. If horses were wild here where I live I would sure have them coming here for whatever they wanted, but I don't.

She is a beautiful horse and I can tell you are very proud of her.

Shirley said...

One of the best things about horse people is how willing they are to help others. I have had a lot of help over the years, and I'm happy to keep passing it forward. You seem to have a great relationship with your mare, and I hope you keep growing and learning toghether for years to come!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Mrs. Mom - It goes both ways. Without the advice I probably would still be guessing like I did with my first horse.

Abraham - Yes, I do remember Sabatini. The reason why I use Gabbrielle's full name instead of Gabby is because I have a negative association with the name Gabby. I had a bad experience with a stallion by that name. If I were to shorten her name, I'd probably call her Brie or Elle.

Shirley - I didn't receive much help with my first horse, and I'm sure that my lack of confidence with him is why he's so spooky to date. I wanted to talk about horses online in part to help other new horse owners.

Those who have grown up around horses and have owned a horse every day of their lives have a lot more to give in knowledge than me, but I can say that since being a first-time horse owner is relatively recent for me, I know the frustrations and struggles that new horse owner's experience.

Momma / Cowgirl said...

I came here via Mrs Mom. I am so glad I ventured here.
I too have found many blog writers that have been very helpful and I continue to treasure all that others share.
You have a very nice blog,I will be adding you to my daily reads and I would like to add yours to my blogroll if'n ya don't mind.
happy horsin' around!

Flying Lily said...

It is so amazing how helpful horse people can be! This warms my heart and gives me courage for any horse problem I can imagine. Kudos to you for giving thanks, and I hope it goes on like this for all of us. Crazy horse people have to stick together!

onthebit said...

I will take all the credit I can get :P. Seriously though I agree that this online horse blog community is, for the most part, very helpful and positive with advise. I think that Gabbrielle is doing so well because she is a good horse and you are a good owner. I know that horses can tell when someone loves them and they try to be the best they can be for that person. Your hard work is why you all are doing so well. So keep it up!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

momma / cowgirl - Welcome! Thank you for your input. Of course you can include a link to my site in your blog roll.

Lily - Crazy? I'm not crazy. Oh, alright, I admit it... you've figured me out.

onthebit - I don't know how Gabbrielle couldn't know that I love her. I only hug her and kiss her on the muzzle a dozen times a day. My neighbors think I'm nuts. (And so does Flying Lily.) ;)

Twinville said...

I cannot remember now how I ever stumbled upon your blog, but it has been a true inspiration for me, and though we've never met face-to-face I feel as if I know you.

Reading this blog post just reminded me of how blogging has made the world a much smaller and friendlier place.
I, too am amazed at how relationships with our special horses can bring together virtual strangers and create friendships.

NM, your Gabbrielle is so beautiful and I come here to see her and your other horses, but also to appreciate you sharing your experiences and your honesty.

Thank you!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Twinville - Your comment warmed my heart. You have to be the nicest person on earth. Everything you say is so sweet. I really value your friendship.

Twinville said...

NM, I truly meant every word.

So, ok who's being sweet now? hehe

Thanks again.
Hopefully one day we can meet in person. Ya know, we are almost neighbors :)