Saturday, January 17, 2009

A bitting rig refresher

It has been a while since Louie has been in a bitting rig. Probably a month to be quite honest, which is far too long to go without this important training tool. And with this cold snap that we had, we haven't been doing much of anything, so I thought today we would ease back into it with a visit from our good friend the bitting rig. So we warmed up with a quick lunge line lesson without actually connecting the bridle to the surcingle at all. Lessons learned: don't chew on the line- your gums might get hurt; whip = move away from it and no funny business or you're going to get socked with it; and finally "whoa"= stop, and if you don't, the chain on your halter is going to come down hard on your nose, which also hurts. We had been experiencing a bit of rebellion, mostly free lunging- with bucking and head tossing whenever the whip came out, and failure to yield to my voice commands to SLOW DOWN. Still having that when free lunging, but no funny business on the lunge line anymore. So after that brief lesson, I hooked up the rig to the bridle and Louie hung around the arena thinking about his predicament while I snapped a few photos.
Standing quietly exactly where he was left.

Trotting around remembering that this is what happens with this contraption on- you can move around as much as you want, but IT STAYS!

Chewing on the bitting rig- "I want this thing off!"

"Okay Mom, I'm done running around now, will you come and get me please?"
After his initial reminder, I hooked him onto the lunge line again and tried some basic lunging in smallish circles, repeating his whip and woah lessons. He did wonderfully. The footing really sucked though, so the arena is going to be out of comission very soon here. Finally, after about 15 minutes in the bitting rig, we un-hooked and went inside to take the tack off.
Louie standing in his Old Mac's waiting for his winter blankie.
Having a sip from the water tank before heading back out to the hay with his buddies. And that's the end of the day for today. Tomorrow surely will be more exciting, as Sandy is supposed to come out to watch us ride.


  1. Excellent! You're a good ways farther on in your training than Quattro will be when he gets here - he will need a refresher course, so it's great to be able to follow a blog by someone who's a few steps ahead of where we're at!

  2. Thanks GoonrGrrl- now can we find someone who is one step ahead of me? lol It is nice to have a reference point! Like how kids learn from their older siblings.