Echo is a 5 yo BLM mustang mare. She was captured from the Fox Hog HMA in October 2011. We picked her up from the Ridgecrest Holding Facility on February 6, 2013. Echo is being gentled as part of Mustang Heritage Foundations Trainer Incentive Program. Echo has completed all program requirements and is available for adoption. She is not broke to ride although with training she should make a very nice riding horse.
03/01/2013 – Adoption Pending
02/23/2013 – Day 18
02/23/2013 – Day 18
Very quick session today. Winds 40+ mph at times but she’s had a bunch of days off already. This video is our session pretty much from start to finish. This is her second full saddling. She did hump around and buck a little her first time but not bad. She’s learned that staying next to me is the comfortable spot and I need to start reinforcing that she work away from me more as well. Any time I have her on the line she wants to come into me. We also picked up her feet. I’m working towards holding her back feet in a more natural hoof picking position and she’s getting rather good at it. Hoping tomorrow there will be less wind and I can get more done!
02/22/2013 – Day 17
Worked on catching again tonight. She regressed a little but again I insisted she walk up to me and if she turned to walk off I made her trot off and do a couple laps / changes of direction. She figured it out in a few minutes and came right up to me again. Put the saddle pad on and off her at liberty this time. She snorted a couple times at first and flinched but didn’t offer to run off and she could have easily done so. Worked on desensitizing her to the saddle some more. She’s pretty comfortable now with having the saddle thrown over from both sides. It wasn’t rigged for a cinch but we’ll do that and maybe some ground driving tomorrow. Picked her feet up. She was nice and light with all four. No problems and she’s starting to accept moving them back instead of forward.
02/18/2013 – Day 13
I worked with Echo first tonight. Really insisted she walk up to me when I went into her pen instead of the other way around. She got it pretty fast, such a smart girl! Desensitized her to the saddle pad…the “real” one this time not the navajo. She was very skeptical but soon got over herself. It was a nice windy day and I decided to reinforce her natural level headedness by dancing and skipping around her stall like a crazy woman. I must have looked like a crazy woman to the neighbors driving by. Pitch black dark except for me with my “spotlight” skipping around a very confused but tolerant yellow horse! Its OK though she did very well and in the end was ignoring me, which was the point. Also set the saddle on her back a few times. She needs more desensitization before I’ll cinch her up. I would have kept going but my arms got tired! I really need a lighter saddle for this! To finish up we worked on was yielding her head to each side and yielding her forequarters. She is very light when asked to bend her head around so there wasn’t much to work on there. Very nice session with Echo.
02/17/2013 – Day 12
Worked with Echo again on the obstacle course. Did some more leading around the ranch as well. She does pretty well with it as you can see in the video. She also learned to trailer load today. That went pretty well. She needed some encouragement from behind at first to step in but pretty soon she got it on her own. We’ll continue to practice with her as long as the truck is hooked up.
02/16/2013 – Day 11
Echo came out of her stall for the first time today. Led her all over the ranch and through the obstacle course. She’d never seen the tarp but it only took her a minute or so to figure out it wasn’t going to hurt her and walk over it. Very level headed little mare. She was leading soft and easy and had a really nice session. Echo learned to tie at the tie rail. Left her there for about 30 minutes but she never did set back.
Echo also got her very first bath today. We meant to take video but just didn’t get around to going back in the house for the camera. She was tied but had some room to move around if she got uncomfortable and move around she did. She’s not too sure about the hose squirting her. I admit, it is a pretty odd thing for a human to come at you with a stream of water! She stood nice and still for scrubbing though and it took two separate scrubbings to get her clean. Did figure out she has no socks on her front feet..the hoofs are solid black and no pink skin. She has one stocking in the back and a smaller sock. Left her to dry for a couple hours at the tie rail, again no problems.
02/14/2013 – Day 9
Worked with Echo today for about 20 minutes. Spent the first five minutes reinforcing the catching game. Instead of letting me approach easily as normal she decided she was going to evade. That’s ok because it was an opportunity for reinforcement. Soon enough she was standing still for every approach and retreat and I was able to continue our planned session. I made sure she was still leading soft, she is, and proceeded to work on grooming and picking up feet. Today is the first day I brushed her legs, and the first time I have asked her to pick up her feet. She was very good for the grooming aspect. With her front feet, she is nervous about holding them up, although she picks them up lightly. I worked with her on this and got her comfortable with me holding them to about a count of five. Her back feet were no issue at all. Very soft, no problem lifting them, no kicking out. A pleasant surprise! No pictures today.
02/13/2013 – Day 8
Worked with Echo today on being soft while leading. Did some desensitization including introducing the slicker and reinforcing desensitization to the rope and string. She is still apprehensive when I approach but getting much better and consistently turns and faces. We also worked on disengaging the hindquarters when asked. Overall it was a very productive session.
02/10/2013 – Day 5
Introduced Echo to the saddle pad and bareback pad. Even cinched her up and let her trot around. No buck but she was clearly a little upset to have the bareback pad on. She’ll get used to it in time! Worked on brushing her and leading. She’s also been working on turning to the inside. I really don’t like to look at the kicking end of the horse!
02/09/2013 – Day 4
Echo was really good today. I was able to walk right up to her to catch her. She’s leading forward, good with the stick and string and ok for me to brush her with the “cowboy” brush (stiff bristle) all over both sides of her body. Haven’t tried the legs yet but will tomorrow. I don’t think she’ll have an issue with it. Got her mane all brushed out and she even fell asleep while I was braiding it. Tried to do her tail she needs a little more desensitization in that area, didn’t kick out but got really worried and goosey. Massaged her legs a bit with the carrot stick in preparation for hoof handling. Also was able to measure her with the height stick several times. She’s 14.1. Video coming soon.
02/07/2013 – Day 2
Echo didn’t work yesterday so this evening was her first day of actual “work”. Wasn’t really work…she did very well. Comparing her to Cargo, the first horse this year. She’s more accustomed to people it seems. Where Cargo did and still does watch me intently, Echo could care less as long as I don’t get too close. We worked on approach and retreat, yielding to pressure for the foundation of leading, desensitization to the stick and string, and lastly touch. I also did some directional control work with her at the walk / jog. She did very well and am excited to see how she progresses over the next few days. I did get video, but you’ll see why I don’t often do video updates during the week. The light is just too poor. You sure can hear the wind though! We have a storm moving in.
02/06/2013 – Day 1
Picked up Echo and her herd mate Foxy from the BLM facility today. Released preview newsletter to those on the email list. Can’t wait to get started with the girls tonight. Video coming soon of them at the holding facility.
Echo did super well tonight. I only spent a few minutes with her. I wanted to establish flight distance and fear reaction to me being in her pen. She really could care less that I am in her pen and never tried to run away. She would let me approach within four feet and at that distance was very comfortably eating her hay. Any closer though and she’d walk off. I was able to grab her lead line and teach her to give a few steps in each direction before letting her go back to dinner.