The adventures of Gilly the rescue horse and his side kick and partner in crime, Pokey the donkey.


Being with a horse is a journey that never ends. What they have to teach us is amazing; but we must quiet our mind to hear them. ~ jca


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I've got a GREAT horse!

 Gilly and I have been doing a lot of work with gates and working with me just moving him around with only my legs. He is doing great at it and I can just turn my body and he will follow that feel. So far we have only been working with walk and trot but it's a start.

These pictures where taken last year and I have none when I was working with him alone on Saturday. But I needed these pictures so you can see how my old round pen gate is. I also was riding in my dressage saddle in these pictures I am riding the western saddle.
We have been opening and closing this gate for two years now and everything has been fine but....

 See the bottom of the frame holding the gate, well the weld broke at the bottom corner below the gate pen a few weeks ago. I didn't think anything of it, it still opened and shut but the gate didn't swing open as far. Still we had been through it several times with no problems.

The gate didn't open as far as it is in this picture but Gilly will push it with his shoulder to walk through, we were going into the round pen when the unthinkable happened!
My stirrup caught on the pen area was we walked through because Gilly moved toward it instead of the gate. OH....SHIT!!!! My stirrup is hooked on it and we are pulling the ten foot panel into the round pen behind us! He jumped a little and I do mean a little and curved his body around my leg that was hooked to the gate.......we pulled it in about 4 feet before my foot was released. Gilly continued to turn and face it but when I was free he stopped.  I had to sit there for a minute to soak in what just happened!!!
Yea, my horse just drug the round pen several feet and DID NOT lose his mind in the process??? Really???? I leaned forward and gave that big boy a HUGE hug around the neck....he let out a loud long sigh and just stood there.

I got off to put things back in order and shut the gate. Had to go out to get the step stool so I could get back on. I came back through the gate, since there is grass in the round pen he was eating when I came back. I walked to the center of the pen, got up on the stool and said, "Hey Gilly, come over here." He raised his head from the grass and walked over to where I was, walked around the stool, stopped so I could get back on his back. Amazing!!!!

We did about 15 minutes working with some poles, backing, side passing over them then.....yes, I opened the gate from his back and we walked through the gate, this time with no mishaps! I did swing the gate open a little farther with my crop so we had more room. He never batted an eye, he just walked through it like nothing had happened.

Now I ask you, do I have a GREAT horse or what????? What would your horse have done? (yes, my husband will be fixing the gate or maybe I will be getting a new one. one what will stay open better!)


Kate said...

Wonderful horse, indeed! I don't know what my horses would do - I'll have to ask them!

Sydney_bitless said...

That Jane is the sign of a horse with brains.
I love the round pen for working a horse on leg and seat.
I never told this story on my blog but the last time I fell off Indigo (I actually pulled myself off LOL!) I was coming out of the round pen and opening the gate on her back. I grabbed the gate and she anticipated moving around it to go out and I was bareback so before I could shut it she kept going and well, I guess I didn't think and held onto the top of the gate and my horse went in the other direction. This left me in a heap on the ground and Indigo backed up a few steps wide eyed like HOW DID YOU GET DOWN THERE!?

Jeni said...

Good boy Gilly !!! No clue what mine would do...

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

That is great. The last time I rode in the round pen, my outside foot kept banging up against the posts on the metal panels making a clanging sound and Bombay was familiar enough with the sound that he knew he needed to move to the inside more away from the fence. Years ago he used to teleport sideways when that would happen, because the sound startled him so much. Fortunately, I haven't gotten my foot or stirrup stuck yet.

Alice ~ Folk Art Primitives said...

Sounds like your hard work is paying off!! I have no horse but I'm very impressed with yours!

Fantastyk Voyager said...

Very good Gilly!!!

Lori Skoog said...

You have a GREAT horse.

dexmangoldens said...

AWWWW! He is such a good boy!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Gilly is an awesome horse! What a smart and sensible guy, too. You've stuck with him and he's getting better all the time. What a thrill to have that happen, though. I would have been estatic(sp?)!
Baby Doll did something like your stool situation, when I had left my camera up on the round pen fence. The camera case loop was stuck on the locking pin and I kept having to walk past it on Baby Doll's back to try and grab it, but I kept missing it, either when I moved her too far past or when she wasn't close enough to the fence panel.

Finally after about 4 tries, I moved her into the middle of the round pen and just sat for a moment, devising a plan, when all of a sudden Baby Doll just walked over to the fence panel, side-passed up to it, and stood right next to my camera. I laughed right out loud and gave her a huge hug!
She knew what I wanted and got me there. She stood still until I released my camera and then we moved off together.
That was a good moment I had with her. Thanks for bringing that memory :)

I'm really happy that you and Gilly are connecting on a deeper level and reading each other's minds. It's wonderful, too that he wanted you to mount up. What an honor!



The Barn Door said...

Mine would have literally flipped out. Which is why I no longer have him after he reared up and went over backwards when I was on him the last time. Fortunately I fell away from where he landed! Gilly is a good horse, hang on to him!!

LambertsLabelle said...

Thats amazing!!Coolheaded guy!!!
Mine would have had reacted equally,but only until the part of "leaving fresh grass cause I call him and let me get back on the saddle"...THERE I would have got the "finger"

Desert Rose said...

Gilly is growing up and using his training to make better decisions which is very good in circumstanses like this!!! I have had this kind of thing happen out on the trail...and have nearly been pulled out of the saddle!

from my front porch... said...

He IS a horse with brains! The brains to understand and process.
My Arabs would have flipped :)

Gilly loves you and knows he is loved. He wants to make his Mama proud!
xo, misha

allhorsestuff said...

Oh wow...another trail(arena) angel story!
Gosh, he was so present..and I am so happy you did not tweak yourself!

Isn't it just the best when your equine partner "anticipates willingly" what you need!!!
Gilly man, you are so awesome!
I sure wish our BEAUTIFUL bays could meet(and us too of course) because I think that they would be famous friends!

When I stand upon anything higher than Wa mare..stumps, logs, mounds...she litterally sidesteps to me till I say "good"!
I love these horses!!!

Hope you are well Jane~

Rising Rainbow said...

I had a similiar experience with a round pen "collapsing" but it didn't happen going through the gate. We were ground work with the horse on the rail and the western stirrup somehow got caught on the edge of a panel and pulled the thing on on the horse and us. Young horse, she did freak out but not nearly as bad as one would think. Having a thinking horse is sure good in such situations. Otherwise things could go horribly wrong.

I'm glad that you're both safe.

Breathe said...

Makes you wonder what else he could do given the freedom to do so. Rake the leaves? Muck his own stall? Macrame?

LOL Give him some carrots from his fans! What a great great horse!


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