Friday, February 22, 2013

Training for All Contingencies

When you start training to compete in agility with your dog, one of the points your instructor will probably make is that you need to train for possible oddities you might encounter at a trial. Obviously you can't think of all the weird stuff that might happen, but some of the more likely. An example would be that the judge might wear a flamboyant hat, or have a hood pulled up. A weirder one that lots of dogs have reacted to is at indoor soccer fields (where most agility trials in my area are held). These fields hang advertisements along the walls of the fields, or in some cases, paint them on the walls. At one facility, there is a painted life-size male soccer player running/kicking the ball. More than a few dogs have been unnerved by this, and had their runs go bad.

 I imagine the same type of training is needed in the horse world as well. Now, I've only ever trained one little western-style colt and that was when I was 15. I didn't know much about breaking a horse and just learned as I went. If you plan to compete in Hunter/Jumper events, I am sure you need to de-spook your horse as much as possible. Which leads me to ask the question.....

How the heck do you teach your horse not to fear the GIANT SEAL ???? (or whatever it is!)

This comically carved log was in a barn full of various horse jumps at the park we visited on Monday. I can only imagine a horse flying across the field, jump, jump, and then slamming to a stop with a big WTF?!

Have a great weekend, Everyone! And be sure to train for those giants seals!


  1. BOL. You are too funny. But you are right, WTH is that thing? I might have to bark my fool head off at that thing!
    Have a GREAT weekend!

  2. This made me giggle for a ridiculous amount of time. Just because I can imagine both horse and dog having the same reaction.

  3. That's a pretty funny wood carving, I would be afraid too.

  4. Yeah, what is that?

    We have giant squirrel jumps out on our cross country cross. They use these big bushes for their tails. Pretty cute.

  5. Wow we can just picture it too. We just laughing now at Merindas' comment re squirrel jumps. Just up our tree. You must keep us updated on your progress. Have a fabulous Friday.
    Best wishes Molly

  6. What a strange sculpture to have at a horse park! I guess you'd have to take the horse somewhere with seals to numb them out :P

  7. Howdy Mates, that is a totally Joe Cool seal but don't worry about the horses being scared, we'd probably freak if we saw that on our walk. We're kinda scardy cats (er dogs hehe). No worries, and love, Stella and Rory

  8. Georgia used to freak out at all the little concrete/terracota/metal garden gnomes and critters she'd see on our walks. Thank goodness she's grown out of it! It was quite painful to suddenly be jerked around by a lunging barking 40kg dog! She has a HUGE respect for any "animal" bigger than her. She creeps up to them for a sniff, silly girl ;)

  9. That's a weird looking thing!!! Looks like Wilson conquered it though!!! Goooo Wilson!!!!!

  10. LOL you were at morven park?

    Horses LOVE cross country, seal duck squirrel, they do not care! They are fierce :)

    1. Wonderful video! I saw the barn that houses the giant seal! Morven is close to where I live. It's a gorgeous park!

      I rode just about everyday (well, weather permitting) growing up, took English lessons, but in my heart I was a cowgirl, and spent the vast majority of my time in a Western saddle. Just thinking about taking jumps of that size is scary!

  11. That is a odd looking creature! Maybe it's a giant wooden badger. Wilson seems unperturbed by it, whatever it is. :-)

    Susan and Wrigs


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