Last night at haying time, Cookie decided to be a turd. Herd dynamics are unstable right now, as Astrid is pushing to take over lead mare, and Ruby is pushing back, because she loves being the boss, which makes Cookie just plain grumpy. She tried to take that grumpiness out on Sable once the hay was down.
Now, for the most part, as long as everyone eats, and no one gets hurt, I don’t care what posturing and grumpy mare things they do. It’s just them being horses. What I care about is when these things happen when the humans are in the line of fire. Then it crosses over into disrespecting the real Lead Mare…me(and by extension, The Kid). And I ain’t puttin’ up with it!
Last night, once hay was down, and before Kid got out of the mix, Cookie tried to take a round out of Sable. Well, the answer is always to make the feet move on the shit disturber. So, Cookie had to move her feet…and the chase was on!
I had just gotten the wheelbarrow out, had Daphne running loose with me, and Cookie goes zooming by, with The Kid behind her…’round and ’round the pasture they go, every now and then, Cookie slowing, stopping, and The Kid asking if she’s ready to behave. Instead of turning to join up, she’d turn her butt to The Kid….which is blatant disrespect from a horse. Every time, it earned her a frozen horse turd to the butt, and off they went again.
I wish I would have had a chance to grab my camera, because this included some full-out galloping by Cookie, and damn, she is one beautiful horse in motion!!
But, no, I had to hold Ms Daphne’s collar, because to her, this seemed like some grand game of chase, and oh, how she wanted to play! She’s a herding breed, and this game? Right up her little puppy alley!
As much as I’d like to let her go and play too, I know full well, Cookie will kick and stomp her to death. No joke, Cookie is not a fan of dogs. If Daphne is right next to me, she’s safe, but running loose around Cookie? Not so much. Therefore, I avoid having Daphne run loose around her as much as possible.
Oh, but the puppy excitement! I had a hold of her collar, because the gruff “down!” wasn’t working any more. Her herding instincts were starting to take over, and she was having a hard time focusing on my commands. Once I had her collar though, even though she was whining and crying to join the chase, she didn’t pull or squirm. At one point she had her front paws on my arm, and just kept looking at me and yipping, begging to be let go to join the chase. Her excitement was palpable, and it egged Cookie on.
Finally, on one of her gallops past, she bounced to a stop, and turned to come in to me…well, the join up was what Kid was after, but with her, not me. When The Kid got close she turned butt to Kid. I told Cookie that she had to be respectful of The Kid too, that turning to me wasn’t going to work. She had to afford The Kid the same respect she gives me. She gave me a snort and a sigh, made like she was going to run off again, then finally turned and offered, rather grudgingly, to join up with The Kid.
From there, The Kid and her have a moment, and then The Kid releases her to re-join the group to eat. From that second, I know it’s safe to let Daphne go, the excitement has dispelled, and I sent her out of the pasture with her big Kong chewy toy.
As I walked towards the gate, past my Girl, she sighed. I rubbed her shoulder, and told her if she’d hadn’t been so stubborn, The Kid would have let her back to the food sooner, and she wouldn’t have had to move her feet so much. In answer to that, she snorted, twitched her tail, and walked off to join the others at the feeder.
Silly bum, she has to remember, even being my Love Pony, she has to be respectful of all humans, not just me. 🙂
H is for horses, hay, herding dogs, and herd dynamics.
Sharing with Jenny Matlock’s Alphabe-Thursday.