Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Load, Lock, Repeat

Over this past weekend I visited my family. I can't remember if I relayed in this blog that my dad is really sick. Last month he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. So while my riding life is getting better and better, my personal life not so much.

While I was visiting my family I picked up some sort of virus, and I now have a low dose of flu, or a high dose of a cold. Whichever way you want to look at it I am not feeling well at all. But I made myself play with Seneca yesterday.  I had not loaded her on the trailer since last Thursday, and I wanted to make sure I could make a repeat of our previous success.

It wasn't success right away, although she was the calmest I have ever seen her in the trailer. She was almost dozing, three legged. The first two times I tried to close the divider I don't think I had her far enough forward because when the divider came across she freaked and threw herself off the trailer. It was either that or I was moving too quickly trying to close it.

I went a bit slower the third time, rubbing her as I drew the divider closer and closer in. Then finally I had her locked in. I tied her lead line loosely then slipped out the emergency door and came back in to the trailer.  She was still standing three legged and calm. I rubbed her butt for a long while before I decided to let her out.  I went around and tried to feed her a couple of carrots.  If Seneca is really upset she won't eat, not even treats. But she gobbled down the carrots and then let me throw the lead over her neck before I went back around again and opened the divider.

Again she scrunched her body in like a slinky retracting and turned to face the back of the trailer then waited for me to ask her to get off.  She hopped out of the trailer easy as you please then looked around calmly.  As a special treat I walked her down to the main gate to our property closed it then I let her loose to graze on the lush green that still runs down both sides of our driveway. 

She was happy, I was happy. A good day. I haven't tested the new routine in the two situations that are bound to make Seneca a little more worried. Which are in the dark(all my horse trials and xc schooling areas are no less than two hours away, and more often they are likely to be 3 and 4 hours away), and loading up and going off the farm, then trying to reload in a strange place. Those two things are next on my list to try once Seneca gets a bit better with the trailering.

I still can't get Seneca locked in to the first stall. I'm not sure if I ever will, but I'm okay with that as long as I can get her secured for travel. I'll have to figure out a way to tie the first stall divider to the second one so it doesn't swing around while we are traveling. But that is a minor issue considering a year ago Seneca wasn't loading at all much less letting me lock her in to the trailer.

So aside from my family drama all is going pretty well. Keep it between the flags everyone.

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