When a horse comes into Dragonfly Farm, our first job is to reading the horse and accessing where the horse is at so we can make a plan for progress. You might say, “it’s a little like a mystery,” as we work with the horse and see what’s what. Even when the owner gives us a full debriefing of the horse’s history and experiences, we still gather our own facts and evidence. In the case of Nuri, whose owners are elite polo player Adam Snow and veterinary acupuncturist Dr. Shelley Onderdunk (very accomplished horse folks!), we know we are starting off with good handling and training due to their experience and skill sets, but we still investigate and read the horse carefully and look for areas that we can help advance the horse’s understanding, confidence and trust.
In my initial evaluation of this curious and friendly 2-year old stud colt, there are good basics in place. This horse understands and respects human space and knows what the end of the rope is (also meaning he has a basic understanding of coming forward off of pressure). This horse moves forward easily and manages his transitions well. He also has a friendly curious nature about him and is interested in people.
In my first work with him, the first thing I discovered was that he was a little uncertain and a little worried during the first haltering. This is not unusual for new arrivals, or for this young horse because he has never been away from home or met a lot of different people. After haltering, I took him to the arena and turned him loose for a little while to explore the area.
I was able to capture the second haltering on video and in that you will see some of the little details that I believe make up some big key pieces that will be critical to his success as a stud horse in a working environment. Reading this horse and redirecting his attention to where you want it will be secret to his success on the field and in the barn!
Here’s the link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/user/JulieRobinsHorses
We are just getting started with this great young horse and I look forward to sharing more with you as we progress!