Saturday, June 28, 2008

Day 4 - The FIRST RIDE

That's right folks

The first ride happened on Day 4, 
the 19th of June

Ground work first

Before you put pressure on in the saddle
do it on the ground

Buddy tests to see if Jackpot is ok with weight

Looks good

Jackpot says "What are we doing now?"

Saddling up

A kind word from Buddy goes a long way

More ground work

Working the stirrups
to let Jackpot know it's ok if he sees them 
out like this

Sometimes horses will catch that out of the 
corner of their eye and it's very scary

Best do it on the ground first
Both sides

Buddy's thinking on putting that foot in the stirrup

But first
He puts his weight onto the saddle

and this happens
Jackpot didn't like that so much

Buddy remains calm as always
and tries it again
This time is much better

So Buddy puts a foot in the stirrup

and he will do this again

and again

and again

As many times as it takes
until he feels the time is right

the horse is comfortable at this point

and he swings a leg over!!!

A moment to let Jackpot figure out what happened

and at this point Buddy isn't guiding him

just reassuring him

and around they go

Now the next picture is a rare thing

don't faint

Buddy cracks a smile!!

A good first ride

Buddy dismounts
and gives lots of love to Jackpot

Strip off the saddle

and rub all those sweaty spots

That makes a horse feel goooood

Excellent first ride

More to come soon!

The rest of Day 3

Buddy says "Hey, let me show you something"

I imagine here he's saying
"Now don't kick the stuffing out of the other horses"

Cinch adjustment

Tying up the lead rope

Jackpot learns that other horses have
flapping stirrups and a saddle on
and it's OK!

Buddy swings up on Disco and moves some horses
Jackpot says "Wow, that horse is ok with that"

This exercise gets Jackpot used to a person
being above him and also being moved around by
a person on a horse

He's not so sure he likes it

Here comes a lesson in ponying

Jackpot says "I don't think so"

Buddy remains calm 
and talks Jackpot into it

There you go!

Lots of maneuvering 
Jackpot's getting the hang of it!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

More Day 3

Going by the calender and time stamp on these pictures (and I will credit the man who took them, as soon as Kim tells me again) these were taken Day 3 of having Jackpot. He was trailered home Saturday the 14th, given Sunday the 15th as a day of rest, and then started on Monday the 16th. These are dated the 18th, so Day 3.

A lot happened on Day 3!

There was a lot of this

Jackpot says "WHAT is THAT?"

Buddy introduces the saddle slowly

They walk it around

Notice here what Buddy's doing with his body?

His hips are leaning out in case this horse
 blows up and/or kicks out

If that happens he's got control of the head 
to pull it into him and push the hind end away
and his body will swing out, hopefully avoiding a kick

Adjusting, feeling the saddle

Learning to move with the saddle

*Very important*

You should be able to saddle a horse from either side

Jackpot says "Oh-kay"

There's the goat!
He'll make a few appearances as we go along

He must really have a thing for Jackpot

Saddling again from the off side
but a different saddle..

Buddy has switched from the old
 "can get kicked 1,000 times and drug in the dirt" 
stripped down saddle for first-timers,
to a saddle that he rides in
with full gear - front and back cinch

Jackpot's fine with this part

The cinching up process
done very slowly and gently

Buddy says to Jackpot
 "That's excellent"

A moment of reflection....