Dialogue with Dante: Wow is Right!

Barb and Dante are seriously dialoguing! Here’s her latest email.

Tonight Dante put both feet on the tire – 3 times.  He also stood on both sides of the stepping stone and also stood while I walked down his side.  And he came back to me in the pasture when the other horses went into the barn.  Wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Barb

This thrills me. The last time I was there I introduced Dante to the notion of stepping up on the tire pedestal, but I felt he wasn’t ready. I saw that he got a little confused as he preferred to walk around the tire instead of stepping on it. I felt that he needed just a little more experience with targeting his feet to an object.

We worked reinforcing the verbal cue of ‘step up’ and the physical cue of tapping my foot on the object. Continue reading

Dialogue with Dante: Practical Play

After our fifth lesson with Dante, Barb sent me a quick email update:

Hi Cheryl,
Just wanted to give you a quick update about Dante.  He is such a sweetie.  I’ve been working with a target stick over head and head down when Larry started the big scary diesel tractor with the bush hog going right in front of him.  He was scared but he touched the target anyway!  Yea!!!!

But today was so neat.  I followed your suggestion and put a sock soaked in molasses on his ball.  Continue reading

Dialogue with Dante: Something Wonderful

Falling in Love Again
I really do fall in love way too easily, especially with horses. Dante has stolen my heart and, thankfully, stolen the heart of his owner even more. The contrast between where he was when we started and where he is after four short sessions makes me smile. Dante sees the world through different eyes. When I first met him his eyes were wide, his head was held high and there was no question that he was very alert. Continue reading

Dialogue with Dante: Introduction

Up until last week most of my attraction based training has taken place with the horses I own. Each time I hear of a difficult horse for sale, I literally enlist the help of my friends to remind me that I do not need another horse. It’s the difficult horses that are my biggest weakness.

For me, their troublesome baggage carried out by bolting, spooking, kicking, just to name a few, is like an archaeological dig or a great mystery novel. Continue reading