Thomas was out all day today enjoying the sun in the morning and nibbling on the little bit of grass that's out there now. When I brought him in he was a handful, anxiously jigging along beside me to the barn. I tacked him up with a roller and side reins, snaffle bridle and lunging cavesson. I looked at my watch on the way out and decided we'd do 10 minutes.
He started to the left and was looking pretty good, so we slid down the ring and I had him trot over 3 trotting poles. Did that 5 times. I will build that and raise the poles until he can easily trot 10 reps over 5 raised poles each direction. I did that 2 summers ago and it really helped his back. He likes it too. He actually got so that I could just free lunge him over the raised poles! We went down to the other end of the ring and I had him canter a couple of circles.
When we changed to go the other direction, he looked stiff. Usually the left is harder, so that was a little strange. But after a couple of circles he looked better and I took him down to the poles. he was doing those fine. Did 4 reps and then a German Shepherd appeared in the barn yard. Tom was completely distracted and crashed through the poles then bolted away. Then the dog was followed by a couple with their little girl in a pink snow suit. When they propped the little girl up on the fence, Tom completely lost it! But in between bolting and stopping and staring at the strangers with his head 15 feet in the air, he had the MOST AMAZING trot! The annoying people said, "Wow! How do you teach him to do that?"
So he did get his 10 minutes, but it was a little more stressful than I had intended. He looked great though, and he settled right back down again when I got the people to leave.
Looking good today!