Took the mares to a desensitization training tonight with the posse. Tonight's spooky objects were road flares, fireworks, and a patrol car with lights and siren going. I left Dawn tied to the trailer where she could observe from afar and took Dash into the arena. Led her by the flares first and she was a lot more reactive than I thought she would be. Normally she settles down quickly but she hasn't been ridden in over a week and it's been cold and windy and rainy and horses are usually a lot fresher and spunky when it's cold and windy. But at least she wasn't rearing and bucking like two of the other horses. Eventually I got on her and she watched them set off fireworks. She didn't want to approach but at least she didn't try to turn and run.
Later I had to put her behind Wyman's horse and got her to follow him through the grid of flares, down the middle of two rows of them, then weaving up and back each side. Eventually I could get her to go without him giving us a lead over and I finished up with her standing calmly in a square of four flares, and there had her do turns on the forehand and on the haunches and sidepassed her back and forth and she started paying less attention to the flares and more attention to me.
So, ultimately, I was proud of her as usual, although a bit surprised she was unwilling to approach the commotion with the fireworks. But it's asking a lot of a horse. I think if we do another session she'll do better since she'll have had a chance to think about it for awhile.
Dawn mostly just whinnied wanting Dash to come back.
It will be her turn next time.
And that's the latest from the Ranch.