April 3, 2012

Well much to Agnes’delight this weeks’ training has included jump grid work, weaves and an agility tire plus a tunnel jump combo!  I know I am technically a bit early on the 2×2 weave work but she weaves through my legs like a demon so the horses have kinda already bolted from the barn on that one. haha. Actually I make it a practice not to do any one single physical exercise repetitively and only in moderation, so while she has good knowledge of leg weaves we do not over do it. Same will be for her agility weaves poles. At almost a year old she now has enough freestyle ‘default’ behavior (my preference), that we can move on a bit with furthering some other skills without fear of it affecting what I am doing in freestyle. That is one of the reasons I ‘plant seeds’ for certain foundational work. When I plant seeds in training I am content to leave it for a while (establish roots so to speak) and then return to it when I need to develop it further. For example I was careful to make sure that Anges had ‘one jump theory’ introduced to her off and on at from about 10 weeks of age. Because agility will not be her main focus I left that for a bit and returned to a couple of other jump exercises with great success. Enough to build knowledge but not enough to be so overpowering in her physical behavior repertoire. In time whe will have a lot of skills with the important ones to me being the most reinforcing and prevelant.
For those not on facebook here is Agnes’ progress on her baby stacking toy exercise:

Twyla coat update: okay Twyla’s coat is progressing and is looking a bit ‘Twirly’ already. I have her topknot up into two loose pigtail bunches in the hopes that that will give enough room to mat and cord. I have bathed her twice more since last blog and today had to carefully separate some areas on her neck into ‘cords’. I can see that today the coat is tightening up considerably. I have never seen it like this; there are some very tight ‘S’ curls forming. I think the feet are going to be tricky and the separations will be quite fine and I can’t afford to miss a mat to separate… here are some pics: