…But that doesn’t mean I can’t teach him to come when called, right? Tik’s clinic inspired me that I could do this. PJ’s not bad when I go to get him from his pasture. He stands there and waits for me to trek all of the way through the mud to reach him at the bottom of the hill. But there is the problem: all of that mud, which will only get worse in the spring. And in the summer, he could be three pastures away when all of the grass fields are opened up. It would be much easier if he came when called.
I decided to combine a Tik technique with clicker training. I put PJ at the end of the lunge line. Then I called his name and gently pulled on the lead. When he took a step I clicked and he continued to come to me. Once he reached me, I gave him a treat. He quickly figured out the game and made the decision to come before I called, which meant no treat. I didn’t want to discourage him from coming to me by making him stop or backing him up.
I really have no clue if he’s getting it, but I’ll keep working on it and hopefully by spring and the mud it brings, I’ll have a horse who comes when I call. Even if he just comes when he sees me and it has nothing to do with his name, that’s fine with me.