Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Tommy Update

Tommy has now been with us for 12 days.  As I mentioned in my blog last week I couldn't believe the progress we were making.  The last few days I have been building on the first week.

This was him last Tuesday eating his breakfast but looking a bit wary!

This is him yesterday, looking chilled!

Tommy is now really happy with our routine, he knows he comes in for some breakfast in the stable in the morning and comes up towards the gate with the others when they see my car arrive.  He then has his hay and Likit for the day and can rest and sleep in his own space.  The shavings in his tail tell me he now lies down too.  When I get back in the evening he gets some tea with the others then I put them out.  

In the mornings I can now brush him all over, although I am gentle and make extra sure he knows where I am all the time.   He is also now relaxed enough to munch his hay while I brush him!  I can now pick out all 4 of his feet, and use the skip that I use for the others (so the mud and stones don't get all mixed up in his bed)! He also has his headcollar off in the stable now.

In the evening he is a little bit hesitant having his headcollar put back on but stands still for me to pop it over his nose, he just feels a bit tense.  Once the others are out I am now putting a leadrope on him and we are doing a little leading practice on the yard.  We practice walking forwards, turning, going backwards and halt.  I do this leading from both sides as I really want him to be just as confident of me being on either side of him.  I then lead him through the gate, turn him around and release the leadrope before he has his treats.  He keeps his headcollar on in the field to increase the chance of me catching him. Although, I hope eventually this won't be necessary.  

I can catch him if he is near to the gate but not if he is in the main part of the field, then he walks away.  I have not made a big thing about this as he comes to the gate with the others and then I can catch him.  At the moment I have no need to catch him without the others coming in (and this will be a rare occurrence in the future too).

Unfortunately, Tommy doesn't like Polo's or carrots and just spits them out but he likes apples!  I have had to seriously limit when he gets treats though as he was getting a bit nippy so now he just gets neck rubs if he is good and brave.  

Fitting in with our routine was the major thing I wanted.  Obviously he is also going to need to be good for the Farrier but we have another 4/5 weeks before that and I hope to improve the feet picking up still further.  I also want to be able to use a weigh tape on him, so that is the next step.  The other thing I am hoping is that I will be able to put a rug on him in the winter - luckily we have a long time to work up to this and I will keep you posted on the steps I am taking with that.

So these are our next steps:

1.       Be able to put my arm gently over his back.
2.       To pick up his feet more quickly.
3.       To be calmer for his headcollar to be put on.
4.       Use a weigh tape.
5.       Be able to catch him in the main part of the field.
6.       To build his confidence more.
7.       To increase his experience eg: seeing footballs, new people etc.
8.       To give him lots of love and cuddles - which he loves!

Did you see last week's vlog 'Tommy's Arrival' on my You Tube channel?  I also uploeaded a little extra one 'Nosey Tommy' 
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Until next time!

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