We have been working hard in the arena over the last few weeks and Lacey is improving every day! She has been doing a lot better with things touching her hind end. While she still might squeal and kick out from time to time, it has improved a great deal. I can now get the rope tossed over most of the time without a reaction. She is good about grooming, bathing and tacking up. However still needs to be watched because she will still try to bite or kick from time to time. She is my little work-in-progress but she does have a very sweet side to her. She loves to rub her lips on anything soft she can find, like the saddle pad after I take it off of her. She is so mature, I sometimes forget she is just 4.5 years old. She has a very playful side too! We have been playing with the yoga ball in the arena and she loves to chase it and kick it. We have a little soccer pony on our hands for sure!
Yesterday was our first ride into the large outdoor arena, followed by a short little trail ride. She did fantastically outside and was forward and comfortable. Heading up our driveway to the trailhead, she looked at a few things but was brave and kept moving. She was perfect over the bridge for the first time and I was able to stay on a nice relaxed rein the entire time. We saw out first bike on the trail and she reacted but I yielded her hind around as he came towards us and then asked Lacey to follow him as he rode away. This gave her confidence because it made her feel she had made the bike move away from her. I was very pleased at her response. I bet she would be great with cows!
We have some homework to do and lots more miles to cross before she is beginner ready but she is progressing well and a ton of fun to work with. One thing I hope to get help from Joel Conner this weekend at Lacey’s first riding clinic is addressing her reaction and behavior as other horses approach or pass her. With all the other horses in the arena, I will really need to work on correcting her aggressive behavior, and keep her listening to me and not worrying about the other horses. This will be a very important lesson if she every goes to a show or if someone passes us on the trails.
Lacey is not ready for just anyone to come jump on and ride her but would be a great project horse for someone who can see her potential and is willing to put the time into training her. She is very special and I know is going to be a fantastic riding partner in the future. Not to mention that she is cute as a button and loves snuggles!