Beautiful creature meet Isla….
I was approached by the owners that they’d tried to put her in the field with their other horses, but the lead mare was extremely aggressive and attacked the foal. They were also struggling in leading Isla as she’d only been halter broken the day before they brought her and to get her to move into the trailer and anywhere they were having to push her from behind until she started walking. When walking she’d continually pushing against the person trying to lead.
Day 1 – achieve a ‘walk on’ request without force and introduce Isla to her new herd under controlled circumstance.
Day 2 – repeat day 1 and encourage Isla not to push and barge.
Day 3 – repeat day 2 and get closer to the lead mare.
Day 4 – repeat day 3 and when safe to do so, let the lead mare take over.
Day 5 – just supervising to ensure the lead mare accepts the foal fully.
Day 6 – showing the owners how to lead with no pressure and handle any foal misbehaviour
Day 7 – Isla settled with the herd and can be left to grow up.
The Plan in action….
We’ve seen Isla when she’s laying down, now lets look at her standing up….
Just 9 months old and about 14 hands tall. Expected height to be in the 17 hand region when fully grown. When she barges you know you’re in for a fight, which we don’t want.
It took nearly 12 minutes for her to walk 50 feet away from the stable on day one. All gentle and using verbal requests before any pressure given.
Then there’s the next bit going down to the field, she tries to dominate me several times, but she puts herself into pressure with the Monty Roberts Dually halter and quickly stops her behaviour.
Day 2 and 3 I didn’t have anyone to record progress, but Isla did well, still a bit pushy on day 2 and a lot less on day 3. Very inquisitive and many stops needed on route to the field for her to take it all in.
Day 4 good progress all round, she’s responding to ‘walk on’ and ‘woah’ nicely and the barging has almost stopped. We see lots of good interaction between lead mare and Isla, at first the lead mare is still too aggressive so I step in and send her away protecting the foal. The session lasted around 4 hours.
At the beginning of day 4….
Isla makes a friend with next doors pony.
Isla taking an interest in the other horses..
Watch the progress on YouTube .. Isla gives us her first roll on the grass too and I think she’s learnt her name…. 🙂
Herd integration, this is an excellent example of the Monty Roberts Join Up, you’ll see Isla display all 4 processes as part of her accepting the lead mare as boss.
As unpredictable as horses can be Isla decided she’d jump into next doors field with the lovely pony that said hello to her over the fence. But the lovely pony wasn’t so nice when in that field and started attacking Isla so that she had the sense to jumped back into her own field, but fell on the wire fencing cutting her leg badly. Back to being boxed until it was healed.
Should always keep updating the blog, time flies so fast doesn’t it!
September 2015 and still enjoying the company on Isla a truly stunning horse at just age 2 she’s confident and will make a beautiful event horse when ready.
Update 24 October 2015
Isla is as cheeky as they come, playful in a beautiful way it’s a joy to watch her play with the other horses in the fields. She’s confident and will make a spectacular jumper. Nothing new introduced to her seems to faze her. Isla is ready to be started now, but the owners are waiting a bit longer for her to mature. She’s happy to have people high above her head, so starting this beautiful young lady is going to be a wonderful treat for someone.
Isla January 2016
Someone has been feeding her and her companions over the fence by hand so we’ve had to deal with nipping at the hands. She’s clever and responsive and knows exactly what I want when I request it. Only took one sharp look at the eyes and a raised finger to let her know nipping at the hands is a no no.