Progress with Stall Rest

Two Faced Dude… Dudley!

He is an interesting one. He is actually the inspiration for a lot of creative tasks and asks that I teach that are appropriate for horses on stall rest. He’s been on the road to recovery for some time… over a year I believe, and it’s been a blast helping him stay mentally and emotionally fit while his physical fitness has been put on hold. Dudley is slowly getting back into work and with that comes different strategies and new opportunities for growth for this handsome pony.
Some fun things Dudley now knows how to do, thanks to Stall Rest Time:
* Stand to be saddled without being tied.
* Lead by the tail.
* Can be bridled while the human is sitting down.
* Hands free hoof prep.
* Back in and out confidently through gates (trailer simulation)
* Picks up human from fence, mounting block, table.
* Can be lead by the leg.
* Can maintain gait at the walk like a champ all by himself unassisted! (Big one for introverts)
* Can be driven places instead of always being lead to destinations.
* Understands how to touch things with his nose when asked.
These are just a few fun things that Dudley is now comfortable with doing and they all have one thing in common… They require more responsibility out of the horse as a partner in order to do them well. These are simple tasks but are dang near impossible if the horse is not connected and acting like a partner. This time with Dudley in his recovery I think has been a blessing to him and his amazing humans. They get to have the opportunity to really… and I mean REALLY, get into his mind and heart. Sometimes injuries come with a beautiful silver lining and I truly believe there are no coincidences in life.
What are some things that you have done with your horse while on stall rest to keep them mentally and emotionally fit?
Side note: Make sure you’re working closely with your veterinarian when rehabbing from an injury folks! So you know what physical limitations your pony has while healing.
– Ashley