Since Cookie has been here, we’ve tried a variety of treats with her, just to see what she likes. Ruby and Sable will eat anything you hand them. Cookie has been far more picky. She wasn’t impressed when she finally got a piece of apple. Nickers (store-bought horse treats) were ignored. She turned her nose up at the flax/apple cookies I made. Candy canes? Pfft, please. No way she’d even look at them. She loves to smell Ruby’s breath after she’s had mints, but has no interest in eating them herself.
We did hit on carrots. She loves carrots! But. I have to hold them for her. LOL! I hold the end of the carrot, while she daintily bites pieces off. While that’s fine as an every now and then treat, I don’t want to overload her on carrots. Besides, when it comes time to work her a little more for training, holding a carrot every time she does as I ask isn’t going to work. Carrot coins are a no-no, because horses can choke on them.
After doing some reading and research, I decided a trip to the feed store was necessary. There we found FrontRunner Pleasure Cubes. They are an alfalfa hay pellet that’s just hay, compressed. Looks like this:
Puppy liked them. She eats the hay anyways, and loves tossing around the stemmier pieces, so I gave her a pellet. I had hay cube every where!! But dang, she had fun with it!
Once Hubby started the tractor, Kid and I went out, with a handful each of pellets, to see who would like them. No surprise, Ruby gobbled hers. Sable thought they were the Best. Ever! Astrid loved them too…and Cookie. Well, thankfully, one of the pellets I had was longer, because she wasn’t sure about taking it. I held it for her like I do carrots, and she nibbled, oh, so carefully, a chunk off. Well. She decided that was the best treat I have ever given her, and carefully, but with determination, took the rest of the pellet.
Yay! I’ve hit on a treat my picky old nag likes, and that we can use in training too. 😀 I pulled out the last few I had in my pocket, and with a quick lesson in how to take treats from a flat hand, she lipped up the last of the pellets. Then followed me, to see if I had more.
Every time she came close I had to turn and show her, nope, no more treats. 🙂
Really, it was amazing, to see Cookie acting like this. She was acting like a pocket pony, searching and asking for treats. Never pushy, but always there.
Ruby is a pushy pants. Which is part of the reason she didn’t want to pose for pictures with me. I reminded her to use her manners, and to not push. She forgets, sometimes, she’s *not* lead mare when I’m in the pasture. She can be lead mare of the hoofed ones, but once I set foot in there, I’m the Boss. Same with The Kid.
There’s a good reason to have a filter on a lens…easier to clean horse boogers off the filter than the lens itself. 🙂
Finally, a shot of my Helper.