Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Training Day #4

Today is day #4 in training Heidi. Day #1 was terrible... She pulled against the rope, and fought me at every turn. Day #2 was better, as I started the Parelli methods that day, and started gently teaching her to yield. Day #3 was a flop, as I was pushing her too hard, and we were both getting frustrated. So I backed up, and made sure that I made myself clear on what I wanted today, and more importantly, I relaxed and just had fun with my big goat. These videos show our small bit of progress that we accomplished today. :) We played for about 20 minutes outside. And I really mean it when I say "played". We both had a ton of fun, ended the session sweating, and Heidi didn't want me to leave. In this first video, Heidi has a 12' lead rope on, but I never once had to put pressure on it. All that was needed was to keep it off the ground, so she wouldn't step on it. :)

 This second video shows Heidi and me playing without the lead rope (known as "Liberty") . She had the freedom to go back to her pasture buddies if she wanted, but she was having too much fun playing! I was very surprised at how well Heidi responded to today's lesson. She has never been a goat that would follow anyone; so this was a huge breakthrough!

 Next steps are to continue to gain her trust and respect. I am excitedly waiting for the arrival of a rope halter for Heidi, as I think that is going to help things immensely, and I'll soon introduce the "carrot stick", which is a 4' long stick used as an arm extension when training. One thing that Heidi struggles with, is that she is head shy. If you reach for her head, she flinches, and sometimes jerks back. I'm assuming this must have started when back at her old "home" (if one can call it that). She's come a long way since I got her (used to not be able to even go near her head), but she's still hesitant about letting that fear go.

1 comment:

Autumn said...

Whoa, what you are doing is really cool! I can get Bill to "play" with me at Liberty, although with a lead rope, not so much. He gets these crazy spurts that he'll jump four feet in the air and kick like a bucking horse.