I talked to Erin today and sure ’nuff, she confirmed that the S-pattern can bring out the drive in horses. She said that now that he knows what he’s supposed to do (draw to me), I can incorporate the draw into other things, like circle game and yo-yo, and only go back to S-pattern stuff if he needs it. She also validated my decision last time to yo-yo him away and wait until he asked politely to come in.
So now I’m to keep playing the games with the belly of the rope on the ground, and to reinforce that it’s his responsibility to maintain gait and direction even at the draw to me. If he doesn’t, I’m to flick the stick and string out at zone 3/4, like a hand scooping him in to me, on the side that blocks the direction he’s traveling (so if he heads left, I flick on the left, “don’t go that way!”).
Meanwhile, the day finally arrived to measure him for boots — professionally, as I’m so newb at this that I wanted another opinion. Six weeks ago, Richard gave Rocky the first start at a mustang roll barefoot trim. Today he returned and did the second. The feet are changing and progressing, but he’s got some flare that has to grow out over the next six to nine months, and a little bit of thrush in that deep cleft of the frog on the right side which I hope is the cause of his being a little off, because it’s easily fixed.
But, of course, Richard did not have the right boots in stock for me to buy today. And, of course, Rocky is between sizes, with his width being a size 1 and his length a size 2. I’m ordering the larger size as it is likely his hoof will expand a bit more, and if not, we can shim it. It’s not like I’m doing 100 milers every weekend or anything.
I want these:
And I am impatient because I have been Being Patient since he first started his barefoot thing by refusing to keep his hind shoes on, late January, and then in late April refusing to wear front shoes…and being tenderfoot ever since. I am still determined to learn to ride this year but sheesh!