Saturday, March 12, 2011

Day 2

Today was another incredible day.  First off, he finally has a name.  Everybody, please meet Marley.  After only about 10 minutes of pressure/release work with the rope, I was able to attach a lead line and rub up and down Marley's neck on both sides.  Within half an hour, he was leading extremely well with little to no pressure, he simply followed my lead.  If that wasn't exciting enough, the best part is still yet to come... The day was full of major accomplishments and I truly think I've developed a solid bond with Mr. Marley.

Putting on the lead line
The barn today was very busy, and Marley spent the night in the round pen since he could not be led back to his stall.  One of the best parts about the barn I have him at is that there are tons of kids.  That means lots of girls riding around on their horses in halters and zooming around the arenas chasing each other and giggling and screaming.  A lot to take in for a horse who hasn't been exposed to this type of stimulation, but Marley took it all in stride.  We spent two hours taking in all of the sights and sounds of a busy barn on a Saturday, Marley stood calmly on his lead line and ate his grass and allowed me slowly start brushing him.  When he finally relaxed and allowed me to move up and down his neck, I was able to take off the number tag that the BLM has on all of their horses.  No longer will he be referred to as #1670. 
Learning how to lead
Good Boy!

Working on taking off the number tag
ID Tag finally off! 
First Brushing
That's not so scary!

Eating his first carrot

After working in the round pen for a couple of hours, it was time to make the biggest step of the day.  The walk from the round pen all the way to his stall.  This was Marley's first time leaving the round pen since arriving only yesterday morning.  Lucky for me, I had Lindsey to document it.  Other than one small spook on our way into his run (due to the horse on the other side of him flipping out, so really he handled it extremely well) he exceeded my expectations.  Such an amazing horse with an amazing disposition.

Relaxing and eating lunch
Once Marley was safe and sound in his new stall, we took a lunch break to let him settle in.  I was interested to see how he would be to catch again.  Even though he was out of the round pen, his stall is still huge.  About 25'X40' so it's more than possible for him to stay away from me if he wants to.  As I had expected, the change in location made contact a whole new game.  But it didn't take long before he reached out and sniffed my hand, took a deep breath, and realized that I wasn't going to grab him.  After that hooking up the lead was a non-issue as long as there were no sudden movements. 

Taking a carrot out of Mike's hand
We finished up the day with lots of Marley admirers coming to visit.  He was so calm and good when everyone showed up, and even ate carrots out of everyone's hand.  He allowed Lindsey and Mike to walk up and pet him, and was curious enough to walk up occasionally and see what we were all doing. 

One last video to finish up the blog post for today.  Before we left for the afternoon, I walked up to Marley one last time to hook up the lead line.  You'll see how he does below, but notice how he has taken right to eating carrots.  This means tomorrow we will begin clicker training.  Awesome!


  1. AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME :) I am so excited for you watching the videos is making me want to get in on the training haha

  2. Way to go Lauren!!! What an amazing experience, it looks like you and Marley are off to a great start. I'm really proud of you. Luv, Aunt Patty