For these past few days Juliano has been amazing! He is so obedient and focused. I'm still a bit puzzled by that. Now I have to be careful not be a direct line thinker and not to take too much advantage of his obedience. I also have to think of something new for Juliano to learn. In the meantime we have focused on the fun part of riding - trail riding!
Last week we went on 3 trail rides. One was with Pressing which was fun and quite exciting as we ended up on a big field where Juliano could show off his speed. Juliano came back home wet, all the excitement of running in the field and bucking got him tired a bit or that's what I thought. I got of him after our last trot to help him cool down faster. When we arrived back at the stables he still wanted to go out and play with Dum. Maybe he wasn't as tired as I thought after all.
Next two days we've spent hacking out with Magda and Dum. Both horses were perfect. We allowed them to choose their own speed in trot and canter. They've done a wonderful job keeping their paces rythmic and calm. One thing worth mentioning is Juliano's motivation to keep Dum under control. Dum is a LBI but when he starts cantering in the woods he easily goes into "I'm not stopping" mode. There is nothing a rider can do to stop him because his neck is so tense that you can't bend him. Juliano on the other hand is more likely to explode, go very fast but he soon slows down or looses interest in running all together and stops. So we've always had our back-up plan if things went wrong with Dum and Juliano was our secret weapon. When Dum was out of control I would overtake him on Juliano, stop Juliano and J would stop Dum with a kick. Now Juliano thinks it is his responsibility to keep Dum under control and I don't have to ask him or guide him. It even got to the point where Juliano learned to canter sideways in order to keep Dum second and prevent him from over-taking. It's one of these things I mentioned in my past posts. You don't even sometimes realise what you are teaching your horse. I used him before to stop Dum but I didn't think I could teach him that. Juliano understood his task very well, him dominating nature kicked in very fast and now he thinks it is his responsibility to control the situation.