Friday, April 17, 2015

A Great Week!

Of all times to take it back to basics a bit, it happens during the RAC derby month. Oh well! I have spent more ground time lately with the horses than riding time. I think we all needed it and have benefited from it. But, I did get out last weekend on Linus, it was so gorgeous out! (maybe i should at least get those points logged!)
As I was riding down the road, I could hear his little fan club from our previous ride shouting "Linus is coming! Linus is coming!" Josh, the older of the two who were out, ran into the house for some apples and his younger brother, Roman, who had been playing on his scooter with his Dad came over. Linus actually checked out the scooter and then slobbered apple on it. 
So then I asked the little admirers if they would like to ride Linus. They were thrilled at the suggestion and each one had a turn. I walked them up and down the road a little ways. 

They got the biggest kick out of it. Their Mom took some pictures but I haven't seen them yet. I am hoping she will put hers on Facebook too. 

These guys have the most contagious laugh! They just love everything and it is hard not to laugh just because they are. The best was when they referred to his Ben D'Or spots as polka dots!  This is truly one of my favourite parts of horse ownership! Especially when people are scared of them, Linus is such a good match for those people because he is like an overgrown dog.

I continued on with my ride and Josh started coming up the road behind us on his little dirtbike. I wasn't sure how Linus would react but as young as he is, Josh was good to pass slow and Linus was totally fine with it. So Josh went up and down the road as we headed down it. Great training opportunity! Then another neighbour stopped his truck (in the middle of the road and shut it off! I love where we live!) because his daughter wanted to see the horse. So they got out and we chatted and she loved on Linus. They asked questions and learned a lot about horses and Curlies! I turned around not much further past this point because with all the visiting, I had been out for quite a while even though we didn't make it too far! Josh passed us one more time so I turned Linus around and we cantered after him! What a thrill that was and I think Linus enjoyed it too. 
We stopped at one more place on the way home. A lady who trains therapy dogs (usually labs for her) was out with one. Her newest dog had seen Linus when we chatted through the window of her SUV one day but she chose to bark this time and  her owner did not like that. They shouldn't be doing that as therapy dogs. So, they wanted me to stay and chat a bit so the dog could smell Linus and use it as a training opportunity. What a day for visits but it was great and Linus soaked up all of the attention!

Then today, I was going to go for a ride but just didn't really end up with enough time to make it a good one so I opted to continue on with the groundwork trend of late and took Linus for a walk. I was thinking of you Terrie as I went for another walk! I decided to take him to the corner of the road where it floods. Last year I spent about an hour with him here and ended up bribing him into the water and then staying in the water. This time, he walked right into it like he does it every day! He did not try to get out the other side or rush through.

It wasn't as deep as last year, but it was about halfway to his knee at the deepest. I was so thrilled with him and I didn't even have any treats with me!! I was wishing I had one for him but was even more thrilled that it didn't take any to get him in there!

Then it got even better!! He started playing in it!! Linus has NEVER played in water before. Many of you probably don't know but we have worked very hard with water. I just learned this year that his mother also has a terrible fear of water. Linus would not walk through puddles that you and I could cross with sneakers on! Our breakthrough was when I rode him about 40 minutes away to a flooded trail last Spring and backpacked my rubber boots. I changed into them when we got there and spent lots of time with him in the water. Coaxing him into it. I was gentle at first but then had to get a bit firm to show him we were not leaving til he was in it. So, he ended up trusting me enough to walk through knee deep water with me. Then I got back on and rode him through it too. My friends and I had been at this spot a while before this and we had to go around by the road because Linus wouldn't go through the water. We even tried ponying him through with his best bud Lucas. After that, I said never again will we be the cause of rerouting our ride! 

He splashed in it, blew in it and pulled long grass out too! I cannot tell you how happy it made me when he was playing in it! I think we are still a long way off from the beach again, but definitely a step in the right direction

Yahoo Linus! Splish, splash!! 

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