Sunday, January 31, 2010

Monthly Goals & A Short Walk

My 2010 goals for Chrome are:
  1. Use clicker training to desensitize Chrome to as much as possible.
  2. Go for more walks on the roads. Use clicker training to make it a positive experience.
  3. Teach Chrome some tricks specifically smile.
  4. Write in Chrome’s blog more often.
  5. Work on hauling to new places.

My break down of those goals for January were:
  1. Charge the clicker and work on targeting.
  2. Start walking around the property until clicker training is started.
  3. Nip the nipping in the bud before it turns into a biting problem!
  4. Keep writing.
  5. Hold out on this until I get clicker training started.

My progress is:
  1. I charged the clicker and worked on targeting once so far. Go here to read all about it. I'm still trying to find something other than sugar that he'll eat.
  2. I actually skipped the walking around the property step and went straight to solo road walks! He's doing fantastic. I don't think he registers Zeppelin's braying as a horse's neigh so he doesn't get upset at all. In fact I think he's starting to really enjoy it. I took him out this evening right before dark to walk up the road and back. As we were starting out I paused to wait on my husband and he started to rear up a little, feeling frisky, but I told him no and he stopped. Then we went for a run together. I'm so happy he's learned to trot on lead already. There was a crazy little Jack Russell following us and barking, but Chrome never batted an eye. One truck passed us and you could see him flinch away a bit, but he held his ground. Chrome's such a good boy! To see more examples of our walks go here and here.
  3. Chrome is doing really well with the nipping. He still sometimes swings his head toward me, but he knows not to make contact. He's not threatening me. He just wants to play, so I'm not scolding him for it (unless he gets too close).
  4. I've been doing great with posting to the blog as you can see if you check the archive.
  5. Still waiting on this.

My new goals for February are:
  1. I want to continue to work on targeting this month.
  2. I'm going to keep walking him as much as I possibly can to continue to expose him to new things. When he knows the clicker better I'll incorporate it into our walks. Right now if he makes scary eyes at something I just keep going. He doesn't shy or side step, so I don't think it'll hurt anything. I would eventually like to use clicker to encourage him to explore things that scare him. That will be a ways off though.
  3. For now I'm going to stick with targeting.
  4. Keep on blogging. :)
  5. Still not ready to work on hauling yet. The ground is too soft to move the trailer and he's not familiar enough on clicker yet to do anything. I think I'll wait for warmer weather to start hauling.
So there you have it. I feel like I'm doing pretty good with Chrome. I'm doing enough new things to keep him interested, but not trying to do too much. I've been doing really well keeping his age in mind and being patient with him. We have a very good understanding of each other. He occasionally gets pushy, but we're working on that and at the moment I don't feel like it's a dominance thing. He still looks to me as the leader. It makes me feel so happy when Chrome runs and bucks and then trots to the fence and looks at the front door because I know he wants me to come out and play (even if I'm just taking pictures).

Chrome loves to play with Zeppelin (we let them out to play together for the first time on Saturday) but he's very rough and Zep finally had to tell him enough. I was pleased that he did listen. :) I knew Zeppelin would teach him some manners lol. I have great videos of Chrome trying to get him to play that I'll post as soon as I can. I have hundreds (maybe close to a thousand) of pictures to edit after the snow, so please be patient. :) Anyway, check back throughout the month and at the end of the month to see the progress we make on the goals.


  1. Your goals sound really good. Glad to see that you are making progress.

  2. Sounds like he's doing great!

    "I would eventually like to use clicker to encourage him to explore things that scare him."

    This is actually pretty easy to transition to from targeting. (once the targeting gets pretty solid). Check out this video from Leslie Pavlich, which is one way to go about it:

    Then it can become a game--let's wander around and see how many things we can target.

    I look forward to hearing more of your progress!



  3. You are doing so well with your road walks, well done. Great to have some goals to aim for each month, I think I should try that :)

  4. Keep up the good work--of course, I know it really isn't work as much as it is fun.

  5. Sounds like you are making great progress with Chrome! It good that you are taking him for walks.

  6. Woof! Woof! Hi There I'm Sugar. Just saying hello n checking your blog. Saw your entry at Mango's contest. Good Luck! My Dad loves to ride horses. Looking forward to your visit to my blog n be blog friends. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

  7. All good goals to shoot for. It seems like you're making great progress. Have you tried bits of apples and carrots for treats. They do love sugar cubes though, our horses would stand on their heads for a treat called Stud Muffins. Give them a try for some variety.


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