Leather Halter FINALLY
I'm starting to think I'll stick with Sheza as a barn name for the filly. It is sort of strange to call her by what is technically a contraction, but then again Sheza sounds sort of fancy and Arabic, is clearly feminine..and I don't want to call her something completely different than her registered name. Speaking of, I need to sort out getting her registered etc...though I think I have a month after birth and she is only a week old, today! Happy week old, Sheza cute lil filly!
Every morning and night I bring mom her mash (finishing up her round of antibiotics the vet left to be on the safe side, since the placenta was in for a while), and oat and alfalfa hay, and muck out the stall. They seem to stick to making an utter mess of the back third of the stall; at least their consistent! I can't wait for consistently great weather so they can be outside! Today is rainy and crap again so I think they'll have to wait for tomorrow for turn out.
I halter Sheza every morning and have started working on her leading the last two days. She runs away like a complete loon and its a bit of rodeo until I can get my hands on her. I assume this is normal baby behavior and once I have her she stands quietly enough and I can run my hands all over her body, face, legs, etc. She sniffs at me and doesn't seem very bothered to be handled so I suppose her mad fleeing initially is instinct/play? I also just go out to the stall sometimes and don't do anything, just hang out, and she always comes over and sniffs at me. My leather foal halter FINALLY came, after two weeks (never ordering from Horse Tack Co again), and I had to punch two extra holes but it fits her great (and boy is leather easier to punch than even dreaming of messing with that nylon shit). I put the halter on while I clean the stall and put fresh water etc, then handle her and work on leading. For leading, I put a little pressure on the halter and give her pressure on her hindquarters and click as I will when I am really leading her. As soon as she steps forward (from the hindquarter pressure, at the moment) I release all pressure and praise her. She seemed to really get it this morning and took a couple of steps with barely any hindquarter pressure multiple times. She gets mad fits sometimes when I am handling her and starts to try bucking and getting away but I hold gently but firmly until she stands again and don't let her go until she is calm. Today she threw her head out of the halter dramatically when I was taking it off so I put it back on and took it off again with her standing quietly.
Momma mare Desire is a total saint. She lets me do what I have to do with the baby and doesn't interfere in the least. I swear sometimes she even seems to be trying to block the baby's mad dashes like she is trying to help me out. Probably not but it seems that way. I am so incredibly grateful that the mare has stayed so gentle and willing.
I know the filly is only a week old and I have months but I am already nervous about weaning!!