Kirsten AL worked with Bandit at the November Joel Conner clinic, and had the following to say about her time spent with this nice old gal:

Lessons learned … Ms. Bandit Bay can be both a student and a teacher.

In haltering and working with this 25-year-old quarter horse mare, I was quickly schooled in the fact that this gal prefers not to be in tight quarters with other horses as she turned several times to assess who was around her which left me dodging her possibly threatening back legs. Paired with the knowledge of prior back feet farrier challenges and that Bandit and Brandy were heard bound and not to be separated, a quick brushing and refuge in the more open space in the outdoor arena helped Bandit to quickly return to baseline. Lesson 1; ask for other potential challenges or preferences when working with a horse for the first time.

Lesson 2. In the more open space of the outdoor arena, Bandit continued to be distracted by other horses around her and kept her eye on her buddy, Brandy. With Joel’s suggestion, Bandit was moved further and further away from Brandy and, with permission, to the outside of the outdoor arena. Bandit and Brandy had less of a tether than previously believed; a lesson learned. Bandit and Brandy could be worked quite successfully separated from each other.

With consistency and noticing quickly when her attention was elsewhere during the clinic, she improved greatly and ended with increased focus, ‘looking for’ direction and gained a completely attentive disposition. Leaving the best lesson, Lesson 3, for last; Bandit’s progression through the clinic is a testament that she is a fabulous learner and has a heart of gold behind those gentle, sweet eyes.

Thank you, Bandit, for giving me the opportunity to gain wisdom in this process and for being a willing learner!”