My favorite horse today is....
.First, I paired a voice warning he knows, showed him the muzzle and then put a grazing muzzle on him. I repeated throughout the day and left it on overnight. At first he didn't understand, but about a week after I started, there was voice warning he chose to ignore and I carried the grazing muzzle out of the barn. For the first time, he was hard to muzzle. He understood at least, this was something he didn't want to happen.
Because he understood that much, I was then able to give the voice warning, then the warning and show him the muzzle. I only had to put it on him one more time after that. He stopped with my voice warning. Also, along the way I made a bid deal of inspecting all the horses for bites and and fussed when i found any. It's been about two months since we've had anything more than a minor nips.
Then about a month after the grazing muzzle, Pan started chasing but not biting. He ran Thor into the fence and one night we went to the farm after 10 pm, and saw him nearly running Super through the fence. Thunder was helping, because she could and also some payback for all the times Super chased her for entertainment.
Again, stalling was an option but not a long term solution. Thus, after way too much overthinking., I settled on the idea of a breakaway halter and a lead rope. In theory this would allow Pan to do his bossing around but prevent him from too much chasing. Also, I thought if Thunder decided to help him harass Superman, she'd probably step on the rope too.
While the mental adjustment took about two weeks, the rope was a constant correction.. Then, during the days, I started taking it off and only putting it on if he got too aggressive. A few days before I took it off both day and night, he snagged the hay net with the clip of his halter. It was one lonely loop of net and yet he stood tied for hours. he was so relieved when I let him loose. Poor baby, but now I know we can go overnight.
Anyway, today, I came out from the barn and he was standing in his stall holding his food bowl by the handle. I couldn't get my camera out to catch him holding his bowl like a dog. So I cleaned some manure and as I came back around the the side he was standing three hooves in his food bowl. Sadly, I only managed to catch him stepping out. If he could speak, he'd probably have said something like, "Just trying to communicate that this is where my food should be."
Below is a short clip of his recent favorite place to be petted. His gums and lip. What a silly boy.
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