For a few years now, Connor has been turned out in a paddock on the front of our barn, by himself. He's still hard to catch unless he's out by himself, so it's worked out well for everyone. Connor gets to hang his head over the dutch door and watch the barn activity during the day, which he loves, and the barn workers don't have to block out their afternoon to catch him.
But obviously it would be better to get him onto pasture where he can see other horses, and for a few weeks now the barn staff have been turning him out in a bigger paddock where he shares a fenceline with another horse.
They weren't trying to catch him at first, choosing to open the gate and let him run into his stall at night. (Ok'd by me - I am still royally embarrassed that my horse is such a PITA of the barn staff, so I'm happy to let them manage him however makes their lives easiest).
|Playing hard to catch in July 2014: Photo by my mom.|
They did that until I showed them that he can be reliably caught with Mrs. Pastures Cookies. I call him, he comes to the gate, I give him a cookie, I open the gate, give him another cookie, I clip the lead rope to his halter, give him another cookie. If you don't make him believe he's going to continuously get cookies for the next 10 minutes of his life, he'll take the first one from you, spin and bolt away while figuratively yelling "Na na na na na na!". Jerk.
|Minutes after this picture was taken he ducked underneath two strands of hot wire like a cat and ran into his stall in the barn.|
When I got back to the barn after CrossFit Regionals, my Mrs. Pastures supply was surprisingly low. I confirmed with FBR that the barn staff had been using them to catch him, and that my cookie supply hadn't just walked off. Guess I need to start buying stock in Mrs. Pastures! Anyone have a supplier? Want to buy in bulk with me? Ha!