I forgot to say a couple of things in yesterday’s post about Dressy.
Dressy is a very dominant mare. She’s a good leader with the other horses. Strict but fair. I believe that at least some of her spookiness relates to that. Most of my horses are very respectful towards me. They yield space to me very easily. They give me a nice bubble of space. They are polite. Dressy… not so much. She loves me. And she is very friendly. But she’s also very disrespectful in a gently obnoxious, bull-moose sort of way. Every so often she will try to go through me instead of around me. Just as if I wasn’t there. Sometimes we have arguments on trail about which is the “correct” trail. She is sure that I have no sense of direction at all. We have periodic episodes of head knocking which sets her back in her place for a while. But her dominance rises to the surface again eventually.
I think that when she’s out in front on trail, or being ridden alone, she feels that she really cannot absolutely depend on me to keep her safe, and that she becomes hypervigilant. King, in an emergency, will stop, turn his head and ask for help. I can talk him through scary things, or get off and lead him forward and he obviously trusts me to deal with whatever danger he perceives. Dressy just wants to leave, and she doesn’t really care if I go with her or not. It’s a bossmare’s job to make those decisions.
If I put enough time and effort into it, I think I could overcome all that. At least to some degree. There are holes in her training. I know what they are (since I’m the one who left them there… mea culpa), and could do the work to repair them. I just don’t think that there is any point in doing all that under the circumstances. I might just as well put all that work into a horse who is more suited.
It’s not like Dressy will mind. She is perfectly happy to rule the world 🙂