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Monday, September 28, 2009

An outlaw Mustang.

Thanks everybody so much for your kind words and thoughts. Loosing and missing Foxsun is a great deal harder than I ever thought it would be. I want you to know it was such a comfort to know there are people who understand and care. I miss him so much. He was like a reliable friend you could always count on, never in a bad mood and always ready to help out or cheer you up.

To get myself out of the doldrums I did some mustang wrangling.

Echo went quietly into his little mustang trap to get his halter on.

Then I did something I'd never done before. I opened the gate of his squeeze chute and stood with my mustang secured to the end of my lead rope. Then right there in that little pen we had our first leading lesson and he was a champ. We had been doing a lot of practice without a halter so he was ready. After we done quiet a bit of walking about and changing direction I led him into the alley to go into the big corral. Well he came along really nice till he saw Brad standing at the end of the alley and he bolted. Zipped right off into the big corral where he went nuts. The most entertaining part was when he thought he had a snake chasing him and kept running backwards staring at the green lead rope which was attached to his halter.

I went and got him and led him around in the big corral. He followed very nicely.

We stopped for kisses and cuddles.

And words of reassurance.

But I'm afraid I have a bit of a problem with him. Even though Brad has been feeding him twice a day for over a year and has been very nice to him, he's scared to death to go near the part of the corral where Brad is standing. When I say scared I mean really scared. He bolts and I cannot hold him. I got a little rope burn and had to put gloves on. He's been coming up to us to eat carrots that Brad gives him but he will not take his eyes off him. I thought it would be better when he had a halter and lead rope on but he's worse.

Brad never managed to get a picture of him exploding so I recreated one.

(I made myself a good bit thinner but kept my trademark scruffy hair, lol). I cannot hang on to him when he does this. I end up behind him with him standing on his back legs. I could hold on to Wildairo because he'd face me and I'd jerk the rope, scold him and bring him back to me. Echo just spins and rears when he feels to rope. It's an all out effort to escape.

Here I re-catch him and you can see by the look on his face he doesn't trust me or my kind.

He's fine when it's just me and there's nothing at all to scare him. If he's scared like this in his own corral I can't imagine what would happen if I led him around the farm. I had plans to lead him behind Foxsun when I rode him around the corral and then to pony him in the big pasture once Echo was familiar with it all.

Echo learned his lesson when he hurt his head while trying to escape from the squeeze chute. Now he stands rock steady even when Brad was helping me get his halter on. He needs to be jerked hard or something when he bolts so he stops these shenanigans. I'm not sure how to do it. My lead rope is pretty long but I was thinking of a longer one like a lunge line. I know he'd learn a quick but hard lesson if I tied the rope to something secure. But he zips off so fast he would hurt himself.

When I swung the end of the lead rope just a few inches he took off. So it's not just the sight of Brad that does it. I can't even attempt to desensitize him while he's this spooky. Any ideas will be greatly appreciated.


Linda said...

That is a hilarious picture of you with Echo--the stick figure. It's a CLASSIC!! I'm glad he's keeping you busy through this--and given us something to laugh about.

Cheryl Ann said...

Is he scared of Brad or men in general? Maybe rub him with something of Brad's? I know my gelding, Sunni, is afraid of men in general, although he does like my husband and he LOVES our son! We think a man abused him at the PMU ranch when he was a baby. Can you have Brad be near him, then retreat..approach and retreat? Would that work? That's what I do with Sunni a LOT with whatever it is I want him to desensitze to. GOOD LUCK!