|Don't let her cute looks fool you|
Unfortunately all Katai had planned was to do the exact opposite of what I wanted. I asked for a trot and got a canter, asked for a leg yield (again with the trying to help her work out the stiffness) and got a lengthening, I asked for a canter and got a halt and so on and so forth.
Supremely frustrating but I'm proud of how I rode it which was to just keep trying to find a mutual solution to the disagreement and yet I wasn't coddling her.
I think the main reason for the fussiness was that she's using different muscles and likely a little sore. Combine that with a pony that likes to get the right answer but now is being asked to change what the right answer is and she was both physically and mentally locked up and crabby.
Therefore our ride turned from a 15 minute easy prance to a nearly 60 minute tough, mental, sweaty workout. However, we did get somewhere. Recently especially I've really been a diplomat. I know we're changing things so if I can get even 75% of what I'm asking I'm going with it, probably to the detriment of our riding goals, but it has helped to mitigate our riding related meltdowns. Yesterday was no different except I wasn't even getting 25% and through pushing to get at least that much I ended up getting closer to 100% by the end on certain things.
I did end up letting a lot of things go, she was still VERY tense but was letting me at least bend her and help her try to loosen up. I also had to let go of the stride length because about the only thing she seemed capable of was tiny itty bitty strides. Instead I made those strides fall at the tempo I wanted even if it meant that it took us forever to make our way around the ring. The real victory was that she actually was letting me put my leg on and was accepting it in both directions and was moving away from it equally in both directions. She also was taking contact on the right rein which was what initially started the meltdown (although I started out asking for about 25-50% of what I needed and at the end after all that fuss I ended up with closer to 100% of what I need).
I was good for the ride and after I was still pleased with how I'd handled but also emotional at how far back this step is. I dealt with this pony (or a slightly worse version to be honest) for over 2 years and she's been SOOO good recently that it's painful to be back here. We're still along for the ride and I know this is just a blip but it's a really painful blip right now.
In other snowy news, the weather man was actually pretty accurate.
Also, here's a picture of my new little snowball!!!!!!!!!!
|Already practicing the side eye|
Alas, I have just over a month to wait. It sounds like the breeder is aiming for the last week in November/First week in December and is working with the airline right now to arrange travel.
As to the details, she is a long haired Chihuahua. One part of my decision is that I really have wanted a dog I can bring to the barn and, while Veggie is the perfect dog in every other respect, he's just too keyed up by visual stimuli to be safe there. However, because I love his personally so much (he's an Italian greyhound/chi cross) I've really been wanting a Chi. Add to that the fact that a LOT of my horse friends have Chihuahuas all of whom are really nice little barn dogs and I decided to go with it.
I looked around for a long time for a breeder I liked that was producing happy, well adjusted dogs (especially important for toy dog breeders in my opinion) and finally found this one. I got first pick of litter, however, one thing I was inflexible on was that I wanted a girl and, wouldn't you know, this litter only had one girl. However, she is exactly what I wanted so all those positive thoughts I sent to her mom must have worked :)
Now I just have to somehow make it through the next 4-5 weeks and I'll get to finally welcome her home!!