I’ve had PJ now for almost a year but there’s a lot I still don’t know about him. One thing I have figured out is that PJ needs to be told what to do. If he’s left to his own devices for too long he either gets spooky or cocky. My last horse was the complete opposite. He was resentful if you told him what to do, which is why I no longer have him, as dressage is all about controlling every step the horse takes. (He’s very happy being a point-and-shoot jumper now.)
I like to come to the barn and just brush PJ every once in a while, so he doesn’t associate me always with work. However, I hadn’t seen him in four days because of the snow, and I could tell he was feeling a little full of himself. He untied himself several times, kept nudging me for treats, and getting in my space as I tried to groom him. So, I decided to tack him up and ride in the snow. All I did was walk, but I kept him busy doing lots of serpentines and circles, and slowing down and speeding up. I made sure not to just walk on a loose rein because when I did, he started looking around for something to spook at. It wasn’t a long ride, but it was enough to revert PJ back into the obedient and sweet horse I know and love.
Even a snowy day is better on horseback.