Three On the Lunge
I opted for some lunging today. I had decided I really needed to work all three and didn't have the ambition to do all the saddling up.
So, instead I set up a 2 foot high jump and laid out some trotting poles and caught the Boys, one at a time. Today, everyone was playing "catch me if you can" to some degree. I am afraid Toby's semi-evil ways have rubbed off on both Tucker and Chance. Fortunately they are both suckers for a treat, so they are never really impossible to catch.
Tucker was first and, I would say the best over the obstacles. He trotted the poles nicely, stretching his stride and elevating to cover the distance. Then, into the jump he was quiet, soft, and relaxed. He got a little lazy once and knocked the pole down, but on the whole, he managed it really well.
Toby was next and after his flat warmup, he also did the poles well. I probably should have spaced them a big farther apart for him as his stride is really long, but he adjusted well. When he realized we were jumping, he really perked up. Unlike Tucker who will run out now and then, Toby focuses his radar on the obstacle and heads for it with determined enthusiasm. Sometimes there's a bit too much enthusiasm, but he always jumps well.
Chance was quite forward in his warmup, trying to canter off at every opportunity, and he as fussing about whatever bugs or flies were out, but he finally settled down. He cantered the poles the first time through, then with my verbal correction managed to trot them nicely, handling the same spread the Big Boys had done with no trouble at all.
The jump posed no problem at all this time. He is a fast learner as this is only the second time I've asked him to go over something actually requiring a jump. But, it was not perfect and twice, during the session, he headed in and simply forgot to get off the ground, knocking the rail and the blocks holding it all over the place. I will say that each time--once in each direction--he made a lovely effort when I sent him back over, so he has the sense to figure out how to correct his own mistakes.
Everyone earned a tasty carrot, and a good spritz of bug spray.
I'll go back out and tuck them in for the night later with the famous "midnight snack."