January 30, 2012 - Jog and Canter
Jimmy and rider Diana Lewis go along at a jog/trot asking
him to give a little
more when he seeks his balance and breaks to canter then finds
Meet My Friend Jimmy
Swift Taylor's half brother "My Friend Jimmy"
arrived at my stable in late September as a yearling. He was
a very big colt already just under 16 hands. But just as beautifully
put together as his sister. We agreed to geld him a few weeks
after he had settled in.
He is a two-year-old now and has been under
saddle and doing ground work for about 45 days. He is similar
to Swift Taylor (Rita) in his display of affection by curling
his head around you and holding you against his chest and
by the way he looks to me to lead and guide him through his
training. As long as I show him once that he's safe he will
trust and go ahead. Over time I will need to do less and less
but for now in his development he is gaining his confidence
in his surroundings and belief in himself.
I approach Jimmy as I do with all my horses
by wiping out the nostrils and applying The
InBalance Horse oil blend inside his nostrils, around
his muzzle and do massage on the corners of his mouth and
around the gums. This settles him and gets him to learn to
let go of any tension or stress before we start our exercises.
Jimmy acts out occsionally in-hand and wants
to play like he's a stallion. I know he is a young male and
he is in a paddock by himself surrounded by other horses and
misses his boxing matches with his buddies. So I do not punish
him for wanting to play as long as he respects my boundaries
and stays within himself. If he is aggressive, biting or pawing
I might pinch him on the shoulder with my hand like his mother
would do, then ask him to do some work on the line and he
quickly stops and behaves like a gentleman. He continues to
settle more each week and loves our long walks together.
Under saddle, however, he is a perfect gentleman
and behaves like a well schooled hunter. His natural balance
and ability to carry the rider's weight is remarkable for
such a young horse. He looks at new things but does not spook
or get flighty and trusts his rider to send him forward. He
has been a joy to bring along. Because of his size and development
we are going slow. He is ridden 4 times per week and has one
day of ground work with me. We walk all over the farm both
under saddle and in-hand, jog in the arenas, walk around the
racetrack, and practice going over and around multiple objects.
Here are some early photos of him back in October
2011 as a yearling and a couple of videos showing him being
started under saddle in December. Notice how willing and balanced
he is right from the start.