Many apologies for the long and unplanned blogging absence! My grandmother, who is over 80, had a stroke last week, and has had several episodes since, leading to her being in and out of the hospital. With helping my mother (who also got the flu for several days) and work and helping my friends pack to move, life has been... interesting. Just one of those periods we all have when things get rather overwhelming!
At least training is still going well. I am now working on training her to hold her foot up for a couple seconds at a time, and putting it down after I say "Drop." I am doing this by using a soft rope looped around her fetlock and holding her foot up for a second while I praise her. We have not had time to get all the pictures for the series yet, and we also have run into a slight impedance. It was pretty funny actually - the twig I have been using to cue her did not show up in pics, so I decided to go ahead and buy an all-purpose whip (carrot stick style). I got a cute purple one, and went to pet Mira with it.
What a surprise! Mira's eyes bugged out, and she started dancing on the end of her lead! I was not expecting that, as she has always been on the lazy side when I flip the lead rope at her rear to move over. And she has never blinked when I carried sticks/rakes near her. So I am pretty sure she was never beaten or anything. However, I believe she was in gymkhana at some point in her life, (that is what the vet guessed, and I agree) and I guess she associates whips with getting serious about moving or something. She really was nervous for awhile! Within a few minutes, though, she was letting me stroke her back with it while I rubbed her belly with the other hand. So hopefully she will get totally comfortable with it soon, so we can get some good pictures of cueing her for the Salute. :-D
Now, I'd better go get caught up on reading other blogs. Later!