Long Lining with Moochie


I've had some people asking for more shots of the long lining and I decided to use Moochie's workout today as an example. This is not Moochie's first long lining session! I've done him about a dozen times in the arena, but this is his 2nd or 3rd time in "the big outside".

A little back ground on Moochie is in order. He had some training when I acquired him, but (when I rode him) I didn't feel like he really understood how to stop or steer. While he was comfortable carrying a rider, he didn't really understand "cluck means go, whoa means stop" with verbal signals, nor did he respond properly to rein pressure to turn or stop (and I evaluated him with both a hackamore and snaffle). I'll tell you right now, that I have no problem "backing up to the beginning" if I don't like the feel of a horse. I don't care what the other trainers were doing—I've learned to "go with my gut" and go back all the way to the beginning— if that's what it takes. The more experienced I become, the more I've not let what anyone else thinks about it bother me one bit!

The most interesting aspect of my evaluation of Moochie was when uncovered a huge anxiety issue when I asked him to step over the smallest pole. And I mean while leading him in hand, let alone long lining. However, through trial and error, I found out that Moochie had no trouble walking over poles and logs when left to his own devices.

I discovered this because I decided to put him in a small pen with LOTS of poles! He couldn't get from one end to the other without navigating them...and I put the hay at the other side. He ambled over them like a champ. But if a person asked him to lead over them, he was anxious. My answer....this was a "taught" behavior. Someone that was in a hurry, rushed him. And he was most likely just studying things. What they ended up teaching him was "pole on ground=hurry up". Once he realized that I actually preferred him to study and do it slow, he was a rock star!

The video today just shows me reinforcing the idea that no matter how bizarre the object, the answer is "do not run or evade" and "listen to me" and everything will be fine!

Cluck means go (one step at a time is just fine) and Whoa means stop!