Joel Conner Horsemanship Clinic Reports

SAFE has had the good fortune to work with horseman Joel Conner for several years. Joel was recommended to us by Buck Brannaman, and it took sending him one horse to re-start — Kai — for us to know that we’d found the right person to help us. From the very start, Joel showed a deep commitment to developing a horsemanship program at SAFE to help staff and volunteers learn solid and consistent skills for working with the horses. He began coming to SAFE multiple times each year, putting on 3 day clinics to teach us these skills, focusing on groundwork and riding. In 2018, he began adding starting young horses under saddle to the program. He also has donated his time to teaching basic horse handling skills to SAFE volunteers, allowing those with little to no horse experience get safe, hands-on practice. In Joel Conner, we feel we have a partner who understands our horses and our mission as rescuers, and we are sincerely grateful for that!

Below, volunteers who work with SAFE horses in these clinics are asked to write up a short piece for the website about their experience and what they learned. These updates, collected over the past three years, will give you a feel for what a Joel Conner clinic is all about.

 

Stella is one FUN ride!

Stella has been a doll to work with in training at Safe Harbor this past moth. I have been her primary rider but recently I asked volunteer rider Casey to ride her a few times a week. Stella was...

Stella!!!!!!!

Baby girl is back at Safe Harbor! I would say that we missed her but I’m not sure the neighbors were too happy she was home. She spent the first two days (and nights) calling for her bestie Jewel,...

Stella the Brave and Beautiful

Stella is growing up nicely and has become much more consistent for other people to handle. She is easy to catch in turnout and happy to get groomed. She is still a little shy about letting people...

Stella learns to halter herself!

I have been working on catch and release games with Stella. She is a very timid girl but is coming along nicely. We have been practicing with the halter and her putting her own nose down into it....

Stella is learning!

Stella is learning to pick up her hooves softly without kicking. The rope allows us to desensitize her and get her used to picking up her feet at a distance where the handler can stay safe. She’s...

The way to Stella’s heart

​Here’s SAFE volunteer Lisa doing some expert scratching on the (formerly) shy Stella. Apparently the way to this sweet mare’s heart is through her...

Stella’s education begins…

Terry has started working with Stella at liberty in the arena, giving her the chance to stretch her legs and learn a thing or two about approaching people. Fortunately she loves scritches, and that...