Sooo it’s been a while since I blogged and many exciting things have happened!
There have been two clinics and “U” is coming along nicely too and will post some videos of him soon.
I was waiting to get photos from the official Cavalia photographer before posting about the clinic and they have finally arrived! So here goes….
It was an honour to be invited to come and help Alexandra Kurland teach the clinic. There were 13 participants from all over Canada and the USA. Included were two veterinarians, several dog clicker trainers and, of course, folks who have dabbled in clicker training their horses.
One of the owners of Cavalia, Dominique Day, explained how clicker training these horses that are retired from the show was being used not only to enrich their lives, but to hopefully one day incorporate clicker training into the shows. For now, the horses at the retirement farm are being prepped for a small intimate demonstration of their newly acquired clicker behaviours to a small audience at the farm sometime in the future. I was privy to some of the work and it will be an amazing performance for sure.
The 50 or so retired horses came in many different shapes and sizes and we got to play with both the Spanish horses and some of the retired trick riding horses.
One of the horses was working on liberty driving, another on passage and yet another on the ‘pose’ to encourage body awareness and develop correct musculature.
We played with rope mechanics, shaping hoof lifts, mat work and of all things pool noodles. If you want to know more about just what we do with noodles you will have to try and attend a clinic!
Dominique was so pleased with the positive energy that the attendees brought to the farm that she wants to have clinics almost every month! I do believe the next one is already full so if you are interested you may want to get your name on the mailing list for the dates! Here is Gabriella’s email [email protected]
The biggest hit of all the behaviours was the HUG…a behaviour that is so much more than just a hug. It is taught for many, many reasons…all beneficial to the horse and who out there gets their necessary ten hugs a day…we sure did at the clinic!
The horses loved the attention and the participants loved what we were doing at the farm…a win-win situation for everyone.
Gabriella did an amazing job organizing the clinic. It went off without a hitch. The accommodations and meals were outstanding. This is definitely a clinic with a difference and a must attend if you can!