This is my new blog to continue my journey with my Dales Ponies. It will also be the story of my building a new life for myself, alone now, except for my friends, horses and dogs, since my partner died in March 2009. We had lived and worked together, mostly twenty four hours a day, for nearly 28 years and I have never lived alone before. It is a tribute to my wonderful friends that I am still here, still sane(ish) and ready to re-invent myself. I love them all more than words can ever say and can never thank them enough for all they have done and are still doing. It is also a tribute to Alexandra Kurland and 'The Click That Teaches' that I know how to save myself now. To new beginnings.......

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Dales Demo..

I'm doing a little clicker training demo for a small group of friends children on Friday afternoon. I'm planning on decking my ponies out in ribbons and doing some things at liberty with Bella and Jack, then giving them little pony rides on the long suffering Grace. Grace loves small children so she will be in her element.

I need to work out a snappy routine, so they don't get bored (the children that is, my pones never get bored when clicking is involved). I'm thinking some mirroring me leg crossing and going sideways, and going backwards and forwards, standing on a pedestal, Spanish Walk, a retrieve or two, jumping at liberty, plus a bow at the end.

I'm hoping that someone will take some photos and maybe even some video, so watch this space.

I'm more nervous about this than I am my driving test in three weeks time (not really but I'm pretending that I'm not the slightest bit nervous about that!!!!


  1. That sounds pretty exciting - I hope you get some photos or even a video!

  2. Sounds fantastic!! Is Bella the spanish walk queen? Children will love to see you 'dancing' with the horses. Is there anything they can partake in? I find people love to ask Hylo to smile or Tig to give them a kiss. I'll bet it will be brilliant - I hope someone does indeed take piccies :-)

    When you have time, please tell me how you got to the next step in retrieve from picking an object up (even walking to pick an object up) and getting the retrieve part?????

  3. Thank you Kate!

    Charlotte, what I did was, as soon as they were picking the item up I got them to target my hand with it. When that was established I backed away from them a step and got them to move a foot to reach my hand, then a stride, etc.

    Throwing it and getting them to go away, pick it up, turn and come back took longer and involved a fair amount of dropping it and picking it up again, and i tried to get a click in after a few strides but before they dropped it to begin with. After that I held out for the full monty and they were quick to realise that they only got rewarded if they arrived back carrying it and so did stop and pick it up again.

    My friend did the same with her horse, Tom, and he was really quick to learn too. Bella puts it so gently and carefully into your hand that it's really sweet!!!

    Bella's bow is ace now, after just a few sessions. Her knee and face are nearly on the ground and she will already do it without me picking her foot up for her. She spoils me she is such a trier and ssuch a quick learner. I haven't tried it with Jack yet as I wanted to make sure it worked with Bella first. Bella is the queen of Spanish Walk but Jack is the king of the pedestal - he can't get enough of it!!!!

  4. The children are going to love you and the horses. Never fear. Your love for what you are doing and your love for your horses will shine through every moment of your demo.

    Have fun! I'll be looking forward to the report.

  5. I hope somebody will video it and take plenty photos. It is going to be great!

    Yes Helen I would love to visit you. I promise that next time I fly to England I would make a pit-stop at your place!

  6. How marvellous! Yes, pictures/video please!

  7. Thank you very much everyone!!!!!!!