We took an impromptu trip up to see Koda & Nemo yesterday. We were a couple miles from the barn, when we got a call from trainer Patty wondering if we could come up to see the boys - she had exciting things to show us! She was on the road picking up a horse for training, not knowing we were so close to the barn. Funny timing. We arrived to find the boys turned out, poking around, and looking good.
|(L-R) a pony, Nemo and Koda (who was in total disbelief that I wasn't letting him out) and Brad|
They seemed happy to see us, but couldn't believe we left them turned out and went inside the barn to visit. It was musical stall cleaning time, no reason to not enjoy more fresh air on a nice winter day.
Before long Patty arrived, the boys came in, and went to work right away. Patty rode Koda first. We could instantly see how responsive he was becoming. So pretty. Softer starts, not bracing against the bit, using his topline. He looked more confident, and overall much less colty. He made the lope off look easy, altho it really wasn't. He did good work on pivots, and side pass was coming along. We talked about the days he still has "nervous/bored bit play" and how they are patiently working through it. Somedays it's gone, somedays it's not.
|Belle, the horse riding cat giving me a dirty look for disturbing her ledge snuggle time,|
with the guy who only tolerates cats.
That's her ledge, just ask her. She launches off of it to ride.
Someday I hope to see her in action.
Nemo's progress was equally amazing, he had all the right answers for Patty - especially with us as an audience. They are so funny, and know when mom and dad are watching. Nemo continues working on lowering his naturally high head some (without aides). His lope off wasn't as smooth but still good, we could see the difference. Similar pivots as Koda, and side pass was better. He is so responsive. I know, I know we aren't suppose to compare our kids. The more I watch Nemo the more it becomes obvious he would excel at Hunt, but you'll never catch Brad in breeches lol!
Their true efforts made Patty laugh out loud. They bring such joy, and earned many a "goood boy" along with big pats & hugs. It's so nice to see other's love the animals that mean the world to you. We were smiling ear-to-ear, and still can't stop thinking about how far they have progressed in one month. She said it was in part a testament to us, because the boys arrived in good shape ready to learn more. Too many times they spend the entire first month retraining the horses. We kept them active, using the skills they already knew. I can't imagine doing anything less. It also helped that we came out to Iron Horse to ride over the summer/fall, so she could see where we were at as a team, after all - that's what training them is all about.
Patty feels Koda & Nemo enjoy learning new things, and from what I observed I would have to agree. I am so thankful we have her to teach them, and us, to be successful. Our boys really do seem to enjoy being at Iron Horse, me too. Unfortunately we had to cut our visit short and pass up riding, for a family obligation. If it wasn't for family, I would have stayed in a heartbeat. I haven't ridden since November. It's okay tho, many rides are coming. Such exciting things to look forward to!!