Across The Blanket

Once again I am sending a loving thought to my dear Apollon. 13 years and we never quite came to terms with the blanket…

baby blanket 1
I know, teaching your horse to walk across a blanket… why?
Because, first of all it is a matter of trust. When I promise that the blanket won’t eat him, he should trust me enough to step foot on it. Apollon never did and the few times he mustered up his courage, and did as I asked, it wasn’t because he felt safe about it. It was to escape this horrible human that kept asking the impossible of him…

baby blanket 2
Second, it is a very good way of preparing your horse for trailer loading. Most of my horses have responded more to stepping foot on the ramp than to the trailer itself. Once you can send your horse across a blanket, and it doesn’t buck and kick or try to run off, you are on your way to not getting killed by the trailer…

baby blanket 3
So, naturally Saleem, Apocalipse and I have been playing walk across the blanket since they were babies. They are pretty amazing, if I may say so myself, but I just realized that we haven’t done that with the girls at all and naturally that won’t do, so this evening, I sacrificed an old blanket and placed it on the pasture. Ablaze and Tardis were on it in an instant, Ablaze having no idea that it could be dangerous at all. He was so brave, he even almost convinced his suspicious mother to step foot on it.

tæppe 4

tæppe 3
Then Apocalipse showed up of course, claiming the blanket for himself, because he knows this game, he is good at it and that foal is so not going to out shine him!

tæppe 2
I was alone in the stable and didn’t really have anyone to handle a camera, so these are cell phone pictures and well, I couldn’t picture Tardis and me, when we worked with the blanket, but she was amazing. It took about five minutes where we walked around it, touched one hoof on it, then another, and then she just walked across it, looking at me like she was thinking, “that wasn’t hard, why is she jumping for joy? What am I missing?”
Marble didn’t even look at the blanket, she just walked straight across it. Saleem joined in as well and helped her, by tailing her while we worked.
I don’t know what to say. On one hand, I am thrilled to have 5 horses that trust me like this, who even shows up and competes with each other on who can get on the blanket fastest… On the other, I will never stop wondering what I could have done differently with Apollon. I know I have trained my horses pretty similarly, only I just never got through to him, where the ones I have now hardly requires any training at all, not even the pony I bought a year and a half ago, three years old, pregnant and having been sold three times already. I am amazed by how Tardis has taken to me, compared to Apollon, who I knew since he was six months old and owned since he was a year, right up till he died a year and a half ago. I guess I will never stop looking for what I could have done differently with him…
But tonight, I am looking for an answer to the riddle that was Apollon with a smile on my lips. So far, I am not failing my five little ones. They all walked across the blanket tonight. I couldn’t be prouder!

tæppe 1

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About Starstone

-Owned by horses. Writer, Photographer, Director, Musician.
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8 Responses to Across The Blanket

  1. LHK says:

    So cool…! You really need a large piece of plastic, actually my mom bought us both one, some time ago, and your’s been lying in my room for ages, all brand new, and just for you… 😀

  2. sammerson says:

    I find it amusing how in some pictures our two boys, your Apocalipse, and my Stetson could almost be twins, the only different is Apocalipse has some white on his hind foot. And the fact that they are about the same age, I just think it’s pretty funny. I always scroll and look at pictures before actually reading and when I got to the last one I was like…How did she get a picture of Stetson???

  3. Starstone says:

    LOL yeah, I have been thinking that too 😉 But they aren’t even related are they? Apocalipse got that white hind hoof from his mother… It has been in her family since before time 😛 So, no escaping that, it seems… 😛 Apocalipse is, or would have been if his dad had got a license, Anglo Arabian, they don’t share the ghost of a blood line do they, him and Stetson?

  4. Some awesome horses you have 🙂

  5. jen says:

    I play the blanket game with my horses, too…only we use a plastic tarp, like LHK suggested. Surprisingly, Blue always did fantastic with it, and Tequila is the hesitant one – the opposite of what I would have expected. I’ll have to get it out again this spring and see if Tequila is more willing to try it now.

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