This morning was great! I asked my friend Amanda to come out in order to expose Oakley to another person. Amanda is familiar with horses and was a big help in creating a good experience for Oakley. Although Oakley was nervous about another person, she got over it when she realized Amanda was just going to pet on her. After Amanda got close enough to rub Oakley, she let out a big sigh and started chewing. Oakley doesn't seem to mind people once they are close enough to pet her, but when they are at a distance she is still very wary. I had Amanda stand in the arena while I led Oakley around. Walking past Amanda was kind of scary, but she did it. Then I switched positions with Amanda and asked her to lead Oakley for me. Oakley was slightly confused but her leading lessons paid off and she led well for Amanda too. She would give me a wary look as she walked by as well. Goofy Mustangs...
After that I decided to take advantage of having another person there and decided to saddle up and ride. She was a little more on edge today, but she was still solid for saddling, longing, and mounting. Once I was up I just asked her for forward movement. I was able to squeeze her up into a trot and she did great! She wasn't too worried and she has a great trot! Easy to ride, but not flat. I can't wait to find out what her canter is like! I only rode for a few minutes. I dismounted, unsaddled, and put her away with some breakfast.
Since Amanda was nice enough to take some video and be a guinea pig for Oakley I decided we should go for a little trail ride. She saddled up Risk and I took Rem. Rem hasn't been worked for a while now... he was pretty good, but he wanted to jog out. I need to start riding him more! Risk and Rem are both fluffy... and by fluffy I mean FAT.
I went back out tonight and had an okay session. I am taking her over to Jessica's barn tomorrow so I have a large indoor to work her in so I wanted to prepare her for trailer loading. I backed the trailer up to the barn, but she did not want to go in. I went ahead and used the common method of putting her to work away from the trailer and letting her rest near it. She was not improving much though. She kept trying to pull back and would refuse to move forward when I pulled on her. Finally I realized the gap in between the barn floor, the driveway, and the trailer might be what was bothering her so I moved the trailer back a few more feet so it was pretty much in the barn. After that she walked right in. I felt like such an idiot for getting her so worked up over something that could have been avoided. Inside the trailer I brushed her and let her take a good long break. After that I loaded her a few more times without issue. I decided that was enough for one night, but I still wanted to accomplish one more thing... tying. So while I mucked out her stall I tied her up inside the small arena. She set herself back once. I had her tied to a blocker tie ring (actually just a loose ring snaffle, but it works the same way) so she learned that she wasn't trapped, but pulling back was not going to get her anywhere.
I hope that Oakley is as forgiving as Remington was when it comes to my own shortcomings as a trainer. I pushed her tonight more than I had planned, but I wasn't going to leave without showing her the trailer is not a bad place to be.