Wendy W - WI
Love the pictures! Congrats and it was great meeting you!
So, so happy beyond words!! Please feel free to ask me any questions. I have to say that as hard as this all has been, I am so at peace about my kids & their new homes. Thank you SO much, Scott & Karen and congratulations, Donna!!!
Ariel is doing very well. I have been watching for her to assert her self imposed authority but it hasn't happened yet.
Sugar and Raven are working as a team to let her know she is the new kid on the block. She is so stinkin' adorable. Tonight we walked the trail on our property with Ariel and Rain. She certainly wanted to go at her own pace and was calling out to Sugar and Raven. Ariel has such a powerful little voice! I tried a few things to get her to slow down and walk at my pace and what finally worked was wiggling the lead rope in front of her face. It got her attention and focus back on me. We tried on her saddle today and took some great pics. She is as fun to dress up as a Barbie doll! lol My husband was impressed by her cued behaviors. Pics will follow soon.
Yes, Donna.. She is trained via natural horsemanship methods so the wiggling rope does mean back up. We started working on on mirroring/stick to me meaning if I walk you walk. I stop, you stop, etc. That was going to be turned into long-reining/driving, but I didn't get that far. If you bend & look at her hip (twirl the rope at it if she chooses to ignore you) she should turn & face you. She also lunges...goes sideways & does turn on the haunches. The more you mix up all the little ground games & keep her thinking on what's next, the better she listens. She will test, but when she realizes you're the leader she cooperates & is a very quick learner
Can't wait to see pics!!
I got to meet Ariel on Friday - Scott says she's bossy......she was just plain SWEET as far as I could tell. She politely helped Pecos clean up what he spilled too. Minis are so cute with feed in their hair. lol Congrats Donna!! Many years of CUTENESS to you!
I just squealed in glee at the pics of her itty bitty saddle on. EEEEEEEKS!!! So cute
Glad you are figuring her out and I know you are a very patient woman, firm but reasonable and gentle.
Oh Donna M, I see you will need lessons on how to properly halter a mini from Donna R's daughter.
Congrats on your additions to the family.
It's been two weeks and Ariel continues to hold her position as low mare on the totem pole which is rather shocking to me given her past behaviors. Sugar and Raven have lightened the pressure but are still working in tandem to remind Ariel exactly who is the lead mare. Sugar continues to hold the top spot but Raven is acting as heir to the throne and demonstrating a confidence I never before saw in her. Princess Ariel has been minding her manners. When the heat is applied she races over to Raindancer (a.k.a. Firewalker as my husband calls her). Ariel must think that by virtue of her size, Rain will offer some protection from the big bossy sisters.
Ariel is such a silly little thing and I am thoroughly enjoying her antics. She now walks up to me and smiles without a prompt as she knows I have cookies and will ask her to smile for a treat. She stands patiently for grooming and seems to enjoy it. A couple days ago she was a bit uncomfortable when Rain, Sugar, and Raven walked deeper into the pasture while I was brushing her. She took a few quick steps toward them and then stopped to look back at me. I resumed grooming her where she stopped so she could keep the others in sight. The only thing she isn't fond of is fly spray. If I don't have her in a halter she will trot away after a couple sprays on the legs. If she is in a halter I can convince her I am not going to kill her. So far so good but I haven't had my grandchildren here since she arrived. The neighbor has a couple young kids I might borrow now that I'm seeing a calm consistency in Ariel's behaviors. She loves affection and grooming so I might ask the kids to stop by for a little pony primping party.
Ariel had some visitors yesterday. Neil and his dog Marley stopped by. She was not a fan of Marley but remained patient for a while. After he charged her a couple times, she let him know with a very slight kick she did not appreciate his behavior. It wasn't enough to hurt him and I don't even think she made contact, but he definitely got the message.
She loved the attention from Neil. Once she figured out he had a cookie she was all smiles! Attached Images
Thank you so much for the updates, Donna!! I'm very surprised Ariel hasn't become the queen! She is a kid magnet & it's so great to see her with a child again. Thank you for adopting her!!! Oh & the bug spray. I could spray her in a stall without a halter, but we hadn't graduated to out in the open yet. Teaching her about spray in general was quite the project. Teaching her how to be caught was crazy & you can't even tell now. We had many sessions 3x day & late into the night. Boy, can I tell some stories about her early training with me! Lol She wasn't trained; she had people trained to do what she wanted...and then she met me- lol. She's come a long, long way since then & I loved her for all her spunk & willfullness!!
I love that mane! She looks like she knows how to be the boss. It's nice you have access to little kids that can love on her.
Thank you for all your time and effort Karen W. I can't imagine how spunky Ariel must have been in your early days with her. She is perfectly behaved now and I am enjoying the fruits of your labor. She's a doll!
The bugs haven't been bad so we haven't had a need to practice in the pasture. I might fill a spray bottle with water and give her more opportunities to increase her tolerance and cooperation. Raven used to dash off as soon as she saw the fly spray bottle. Now she is fine with it so I don't think it will take long with Ariel.
Today Ariel had a play date with a few kids. She rocked the party! The kids were arriving at 2:30 so earlier in the day I groomed her and took her for a walk down the road. She was very comfortable with passing traffic, a neighbor who stopped on his wheeler with his dog on the back, and she was completely out of sight of Sugar, Raven, and Rain without the slightest discomfort. I asked her to walk, trot, whoa, and back up at various points along the way. When we stopped at the neighbor's house to invite the kids over for a pony party, she called out to the children when the front door opened! It was the cutest thing ever.
I was working with Ariel and the kids so didn't have an opportunity to take any pics. I will download what I can from FB as I see them posted and share them in her thread here. The neighbor kids came back about an hour later for more time with Ariel. We walked one of the trails and headed for an apple tree. The kids each picked an apple and fed it to Ariel then we walked back to the pasture. She loved all the attention. The first two pics are of Ariel and Brayden. The third is of Ariel and Buddy and the forth of Ariel running behind Raven who is always first to the dinner table!
Hehe, Raven! Ariel is so cute, and it's great that she seems to like having kids around.
nice photos... you have it ALL... horses,mini, cute dog, and plenty of terrain to run and play in... grandkids are having a good time...
SO awesome knowing she is in the perfect home with people who are perfect for her. Thank you for making my day!
All of the photos are great, BUT I love the one with *Raven* Ariel* & *Rain*... *Ariel* & *Rain* look like family, and *Raven* is the leader of the pack... NEAT.
Raven has been asserting herself lately. In the picture from left to right is Rain, Raven, Sugar, and Ariel poking her little nose between Sugar and me.