Sunday, March 30, 2008

Target's first two weeks in training

We went to see Target at his new trainer on Friday evening. He has been there two weeks. We did not know how much he learned at his previous trainer, where he was saddled about ten times, so we were both venturing forth into blind territory here.

Of course, you always are with a young unstarted horse, but using a new trainer doubles the anticipation. Ryan emailed me with news of his first week, and I knew that he had started loping him in the round pen and he was doing pretty good, and that he was settling into the routine. Beyond that, I just had to see for myself

I did NOT by any stretch expect what I saw. This is not the colt I dropped off, that is for sure. He is very relaxed, and sensible. Ryan said the first week, he was slow to buy into the program, but the second week, he had improved by leaps and bounds every day and had yet to take a step backward.

He is definitely left handed and even has a really nice start on his turn around--he is stiffer to the right, but in his demonstration to us, we could see him improve by the minute on that side. That is pretty normal, according to Ryan--I never know how much difference from side to side is normal and at which point it becomes a cause for concern. Ryan framed it as a perfectly normal progression, and nothing to be concerned about--if anything, Targ is advanced in his movements to his left--turning him around at this stage is not something he normally would do but Target wants to and is good at it. He really wants to stop hard as well--that is something we have seen in every single slybaby so far. He has that whoa down with little to no pressure on his face--I like that.

He is actually a really cute mover--I knew he would be from the day he was born. He is just elegant. And he has some speed but he makes it look so effortless when he does it, and one thing that stood out to me was the he looked the most content when he was loping. Maybe what he was, was confident--in other gaits, he was listening to my camera shutter, driving his ears all around, listening to Ryan or us talk, but when he was loping, he had them pricked forward, he looked the most relaxed and not distracted at all--just a happy colt. When he is turning around, he gets this very intent look on his fact--unfortunately, those pics all turned out blurry.

He is still in the losing weight stage---he must be working his tail off, as I know he is eating more than he does at home, and the hay is gorgeous. I always forget that it starts like this---hard work equals weight loss, then it starts to build back up. His nicks and marks from roughhousing at home are healing up, but he is still pretty shaggy--I never thought he was that hairy, but he must be to still be hanging on to it. I bet in two weeks he will be a new man.

I think we will leave him there another month at least and then evaluate from there if he will stay in training headed to a show career or if he will come home for Barry to ride. You could ahve knocked me over to hear him suggest that he might like to have him. WTH is that about?


Elly'sMom said...

Man that's a huge whole. Amazing that he wasn't off more noticably. He's such a good ole' man though, it's no wonder he wasn't "complaining".

Elly'sMom said...

Oops, that last one was supposed to be on Grandpa's hoof photo. ;P
HA, Oh well, that's what I get for being still awake when I should be in bed!

Elly'sMom said...

Cool pics. Does your camera have video capability? Just wondering, errr, hinting! : )

Lazy A Ranch said...

Good to hear the new trainer is working out and great to hear that Target is doing so fab.

Photo of the Whenever I feel like changing it

Photo of the Whenever I feel like changing it


SITS Network