Could It Be?

May 7, 2008 at 9:48 am Leave a comment

Ever since Klondike arrived, we’ve all marvelled at his seemingly bombproof nature.  Deer in the forest?  No big deal.  Flapping sheets of plastic? Not worth worrying about.  Jumps, mud, cars, other vehicles, the horse-eating tipped over garbage cans ALL the other horses spook at?  All of these things were barely worth the flick of an ear.  Klondike was the perfect example of the most steadfast kind of horse there is.

But yesterday, I finally found something he’s not so sure about.  Some may not understand why this fills me with glee, but it’s nice to find at least one normal hairy-eyeball equine response… Klondike is so good about most stuff that I can’t help but sometimes regard him as abnormal or super-horselike.  With this little chink in his bomproof armor, I’m reminded that he is at heart a pretty normal dude.

So what’s the chink?  Flyspray.  Now, I’m sure he’s been flysprayed before, and hasn’t had a problem with it- but this may have been the first official flyspraying of the year, and sometimes they forget that they were fine with the flyspray a few months ago- I know my horse does (not just flyspray, but blankets/sheets are always new and terrifying, even when he was totally used to them only a few months before). 

Of course, I should mention here that Klondike’s response to stuff he’s not sure about is to tense up, widen his eyes, and try to stare the offending thing down.  Like he’s saying to that plastic spray bottle, “dude, I’m way bigger than you, and can crush you!”  As the spray actually hits his body, he has the typical “ack, what is that??!?!?” sort of response.  None of this is actually bad- he doesn’t freak out, or anything, and I think most horses seem to have that response to spray bottles at some point.

So I finally got my chance to actually get Klondike used to something.  My first chance to give reassuring pats and tell him he was such a good booooiee  for putting up with something a little frightening.  I started by spraying said bottle in the air in front of him.  The sound put him on edge but it was no real problem.  Then I moved to the lower legs, and moved up.  I stopped when I got to a part of his body he was clearly uncomfortable with, and then went back to somewhere he’d already had sprayed.  That’s the way I approach a lot of things- spray, clipping, hosing- I like to retreat back to where the horse is comfortable and never take him too far out of his comfort zone. 

After a very brief ride, I brought out the bottle again, and got most of his body.  He seemed a little upset but never moved, and he was appropriately rewarded for his tolerance of this ghastly procedure.  I am sure that over the next few days, he’ll be as bored with flyspray as he is with everything else, because he’s smart like that.

 

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Who are you and what did you do with Klondike? The Mosey That Wasn’t

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