Venice is turning out to be quite a lesson in patience for me. I kept thinking all along that we would have a big breakthrough and then would be able to sail along in our training after that. But what we are really having is tiny breakthrough after tiny breakthrough. Every single step has to be broken down into minutely smaller steps in order to progress. Every time I think we should just jump forward to a new stage, she makes me slow down and reassess what I’m doing.
She is the exact opposite of King, who was always leaping ahead of our lesson plan faster than I could keep up (leaving the inevitable gaping holes in his training). Every horse is a whole new education, that’s for sure.
I still have not gotten a halter on Venice. But I have been able to touch her and brush her over most of her right side. I am not allowed to touch her left side, or even look at it. So I have had to use a stick to reach around and touch the left side of her neck without seeing it. And then gradually over the last few days, she has allowed me to shift around so I can see that side of her. Sometimes. Each day it takes a bit less time for me to convince her that it’s safe to be touched or seen on that side.
I cannot touch her face. Just the edge of one cheek. However, she will reach out and touch me. And actually will do that quite often. Sometimes just with her whiskers, but yesterday she nudged me a couple of times. A pretty solid touch. I am beginning to think that maybe she likes me at least a little bit. Sometimes.
Here’s some video of yesterday’s session. It’s excruciatingly boring. Our sessions are not good spectator events I’m afraid. It’s all very slow, very quiet, and with very little action. Makes for very boring blog posts too :-(