Ace did very well today, sorry I haven't gotten the Training FAQ page up, he certainly has been keeping me busy. Soon I think I will move his updates to another page, and keep this one stricly for his information.
I finally figured out what Ace's problem is when I would enter his pen, he would always snort at me and act very scared. I attempted to take him out of his small round pen into the arena today, but he was scared to go through. I realized he was associating the squeeking of the gate with the chutes at the Palimino Valley Wild Horse and Burro Center. Everytime he's heard that noise, something awful and tramatizing has happened to him. Poor guy. I worked with him gently for over an hour, and I finally convinced him that going in and out of gates meant no harm to him, soon he was happily walking all around the arena and through every gate we have.
I finished clipping him today, he really is an angel. Sacked him out more thoroughly, and man does it make a difference! Since he has come home, he seemed so tightly wound that I wondered what was going on inside his head. Everytime I sack him out, he seems so much happier and at ease when we're done, like I've just taken a load of his shoulders by helping him realize that I mean him no harm. (And neither do the plastic bags, rain coats, sacks, tarps, etc LOL)
Once we accomplished the gate excersises, I figured that we would attempt to introduce him to one of the stalls, a very scary experience for mustangs indeed! They tend to feel trapped and panic so I took it slow with him... Or at least I tried. I took him into Trust's stall (His lover, that completely ignores him! To his displeasure of course) and he walked right in! He was so busy smelling the walls, and her manure that I don't think he even fully comprehended what he was doing until he was inside. But when he finally did look up, he noticed her hay and made himself right at home. Typical men huh!
We practiced going in and out through the different entrances, but he was more interested in eating and smelling the walls, so I moved on.
I walked him around property for the first time, and introduced him to the rest of the family. Astonishingly he walked right past me, and smelled them. Even though he was wary, he was still on high from our earlier confidence building excersises and insisted on introducing them to me. LOL. Quite a character he is.
Then we decided to visit the random scary objects in our yard, such as a big boat. Being it was very windy today, the cover was flapping wildly, but he walked up to it and smelled it. All was well until the cover slapped him in the face.
He took off running, but stopped 20 feet away. I slapped my leg and asked him to face up to me with both eyes. To my shock, not only did he look at me, but he walked up to me! I mean he was free! He had several acres that he could have ran loose on, terrorizing us all, but he didn't. He choose to join up with me instead. SUCCESS! I walked him back up to the boat, he sniffed it for about 5 minutes, and then decided it was boring. He sighed and pressed his head to my chest, begging me to hold his head and tell him what a clever boy he is. Of course I abliged happily, and stood there next to the boat rewarding him.
I re-sacked him out before putting him up, and I went the long way back to his pen, through several gates, and past the mares. He is such a gentleman.