Monday, December 28, 2009

Pics from this weekend

Had a great weekend with the girls, did lots of clicker training, and Daisy had a short ride. She did great!

Martha is still being awesome about letting me touch her front feet!!

I love this pic, no halter, no restraint, showing that Martha really *wants* to be there, and there's no coercion, no forcing. If she didn't want to be there she could easily just walk away.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


i decided to go see what Martha remembered today. She let me pick up the 'good' one right away. then i started asking for it longer, and longer. Then started introducing the hoof pick - let me tell you the first couple times were interesting, while I tried to figure out how to hold all my 'tools'. LOL

a couple more times and I was cleaning her foot! it was amazing!!

then onto the bad side, we got a give at the knee, then the pastern, and soon i was able to hold that one in 'position'. Then i worked her up like the other one, having her let me have it a little more, and a little more. Then introduced the pick, and got to clean that one too!!

I just cannot believe how much this helped break us through this tough spot! I can't wait to see what we can accomplish with clicker training!!

Both of these sessions took place in the 12' x 12' stall - unhaltered/tied, so if she wants to move away she could. but she never did really. and when she let me have her feet, she was really soft.

so happy with the results so far!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

woo hooo!!!!!!

So i've been wanting to clicker train with Martha to see if that helped,well it did! Went out there today - and it seems like our 'training' space is the stall - cuz I can lock Daisy out - I started as I usually do with trying to touch Martha's legs, but now there was a click! She caught on really fast that click meant 'yes, good!' and that there was a small treat on the way.

so it started with being able to touch down to her canon bone - which I could do before most of the time, kinda. then she started lifting her leg before i got to her pastern, so i thought 'ok, that's good, click, then she was letting me hold her leg at the knee!

well by the end of it I could actually pick up her right front hoof!! wow! and put it into 'position' as if I were going to clean it. She did great! she actually let me hold it a few seconds! So i found out her left side is her 'bad' side. She just doesn't really care for me to be over there. so on that side I didn't get a foot, but I got her to lift her leg a couple times and it at the knee, but not nearly as long as the right side. I ended the session on picking up her right hoof again. then told her 'all done!' and that was it!

I'm so proud of her & myself! She's also learning that she's not allowed to nip at me during this time and if she does then she doesn't get a click. i love that it seems like there isn't much resistance. if i feel like she's had enough i give her a break, then step away, if she comes up to me I take that as 'yes i want to learn more!!'

I think for a really short session - maybe ten minutes, we did awesome!

( also this was in the stall un-haltered & untied, so if she wanted to move away she could)

Of course Daisy got her feet cleaned, she does excellent when she knows theres a treat at the end. she 'can' do it without the treat, but she's so amazingly easy going when she knows she gets rewarded - no jerking he leg up, no kicking out, nothing, just patient - and I've been cleaning her feet while she's loose so even better. when i didn't treat her I'd have to tie her for the rears. She stands nice & patient now LOL.

Chilly donk

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Daisy's new Saddle!!

Check it out! got Daisy a saddle on ebay! Its looking like it fits pretty well!!

the official weigh in of this saddle with girth & crupper is 15lbs 10 oz.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

todays stuff....

Cleaned out Daisy's hooves, she was very good, no resistance at all today. she got one pellet for each hoof. maybe that helped?? LOL a little incentive for being a good girl.

then I haltered Martha, who was in the stall, she was very good, let me put it right on her. Then i used the carrot stick to start touching her legs. Going very slowly and praising her when she let me put it on her legs. She did step back a couple times but nothing big, she soon let me touch them with no resistance.
I gave her breaks in between. i'm going very slow with her. She seems to get overwhelmed easily if you go to fast or ask too much.

She then was standing in the doorway of the stall. I petted down her left front leg a couple times praising her for when she stood still and accepted it. I was very soft with her. Then one time she picked up her leg, so i gently held it for a second, gave it back and praised the crap outta her! LOL. I did it a second time but held the leg a little bit longer! I praised her for the smallest amount of try.

I repeated it on the right front leg, i didn't get to hold it, but she got rewarded each time she let me pet it down to her pastern. Kept it all short, soft and lots of praise when she did well. I think she's getting it.

good day with the donks.

Tractor VS Donk

LOL!! My girls are hilarious....

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

donkey day

Went out and visited the donks at lunch ( turned into an extended lunch! LOL)
got some good scratchings in with Martha, Daisy wanted nothing to do with me at first. Then my work friend was talking to steve over the fence, and both donks came up & were interested. They both got scratched/loved on. I had my carrot stick with me today so Martha gets used to seeing it.

then steve grabbed the stick at one point and was playing with it, twirling it around while he was talking. So this was good exposure for Martha. Then i jumped on the trampoline, Daisy came over to investigate, and actually stood right at the edge of the trampoline while i was jumping. Martha came up but not as close. Then I sat on the edge and played a bunch with Daisy. I'm talking about a lot! lol playing with her lips, scratching her face, holding her head. She was just getting loved on!

I grabbed the tarp and showed the people across the fence how daisy was really tolerant of the tarp. put it on her head, made a hood, put it over her head. she just stood there. put it over her back and left it there. then she started walking around - the whole time Martha was watching probably thinking 'OMG the blue thing ate Daisy!'

Daisy started walking back to the shelter, but Martha was in front of her, Daisy still had the tarp on. It was so funny to see my calm donk desensitizing my scaredy cat donk! Daisy ended up in the pen and Martha in the alley way. Steve still had the stick. so while i was loving on Daisy Steve was letting Martha smell the stick, and he was actually able to touch her on her face, neck, back, rump and thigh with it. he got down almost to the back hock and then she walked off. But i thought it was fantastic that she had someone else showing her the stick & touching her with it. I put the tarp back on Daisy and she walked to the pasture with Martha close behind.

I just kept working that tarp! lol i was holding it open while it was still on Daisy, rubbing it around. flapping it around. ITs good for the both of them. Next time I'm definitely bringing my camera out. I liked how Steve was going about things with Martha - he's not an equine person and hasn't had much experience with them. but he'd show it to her, let her sniff it. then he'd touch her a bit, then he'd let her sniff it again. It was neat, he was very gentle & patient with her.

there have been a couple days where I've worried about Daisy a bit, cuz she's seemed very put off lately, when she's usually very lovey. Today she was a love bug so that made me feel better.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

slow progress

So I had not really been working with the donkeys since last weekend. I guess maybe that was good in a way to give Martha to absorb some of her lesson on Saturday. Martha let me approach her very easily. Gave her some scratchings, and everytime I do I'm trying to go down those front legs! LOL very slowly though.

The flies were insane so I went and grabbed the fly spray. Daisy was not cooperating, usually i can spray her down no problem. I guess since she's been having a break and has a new buddy she thinks she doesn't have to do certain things. I followed her around and kept trying to get some on her. She was being a butt head. So i grabbed some rope and made a quick halter, then i had to follower her around some more to catch her. Usually its very easy but now with Martha around Daisy is a little avoidant - but she plays it off as chasing Martha away. I got it on her and made her stand for her spray. Then I had her walk over her poles in the pasture. turned her loose.

Then I went to put the halter on Martha ( but it doesn't *look* like a halter), she was like 'whoa whats this???' but she let me put the loop over head pretty easily. I got it on, then sat there adjusting it, moving it around a bunch. taking the last loop off the nose, then back on, then off, then on. Getting her a bit desensitized to 'mom wants to put this crap on you' thing. lol.

Then i asked her to step towards me, she did. I released, then i did it a few more times. Previously there had been times that we needed to 'do' something when haltered, so this time i wanted to go over the pressure and release/follow me without really any goal except the exercise itself. I tried to get some fly spray on her, got some on her neck then she wanted nothign to do with it. I let her go, but still had her investigate the bottle.
then i stood in the same position i would if I were using it - so she got used to that body posture. She was good.

then I went to leave and of course Martha wanted to more attention, so she got some more scratching ( aka secret desensitization time). She followed me down the alley way, so I gave her some ear scratchings, then i snuck some fly spray in!! I just barely misted her front legs. LOL. sneaky sneaky mom.

on Sunday I had went out there with the carrot stick and started working with her, right now i'm just trying to get her over the stick itself. She is unsure of the whole thing. Hopefully soon she'll accept it all over her body, then we'll go to 'brooming' lol then after that we should be ok to touch all over and we can start down those legs!

Slow slow girl I tell ya. I'm still happy that I can walk right up to her with no problems.
Daisy and Martha are doing much better together. This afternoon i could actually pet both of them at the same time! I know i'm still earning Martha's trust. I feel like she gets overwhelmed easily. hopefully with lots of hard work I can get her to where Daisy is right now. and someday they'll be like Dave & Ginny's Ashley ( and all the other awesome donks)

Monday, November 9, 2009

feet cleaning, rope work.

I went out and cleaned Daisy's feet. had her tied to the pine tree in the pasture. She did great on 3, but the last hind she wanted to fight. Reminded her that she can't do that, then picked it back up and cleaned it out. I swear sometimes she's a butthead and thinks she forgets stuff. pfffft.

while i had Daisy tied I went and brushed Martha a bit. I also tried to see if she'd let me touch one of her front feet. NOPE. So i untied Daisy & used the lead rope to kinda 'sack' out Martha a bit. First i asked her to hold my rope LOL I just put it on her back. let her think about it a little. Then i took it off & started gently swinging the end of it so it was touch & swing around her leg. At first she thought that wasn't cool. But I kept at it, every time she'd stand still and allow it I would stop & tell her what a good donk she was. I kept each little sack out session short. there was probably 4 sessions in 5-10 minutes. Just gave her breaks to think about it. the rope didn't eat her. LOL.

I thought i was done so i started heading back, but Martha was following me. LOL. so I went back to petting her, throwing the rope around her legs, and even tossing the rope over her back. Flopping it on her sides a little. She did great at that.

This time when I brushed her I almost got to her rump, got the sides pretty good, and to the front knees and just a hair past. Even got some girth brushing in there too. This is all VERY short brushings, maybe a minute each time. I always step away from her when she's calm & relaxed. And usually she steps back towards me for some more.

Martha pics!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Multi tasking with two donks, interesting LOL

So tonight on a whim I decide I need to clean Daisy's feet. Its been awhile and it's been bothering me. I'd say it's been almost a week!!

so I get Martha haltered first, went ok, she let me do it, but she's not totally relaxed yet. Usually to her halter means 'something is going to happen' Slow going getting her to the stall. I tried to advantage of a moment where daisy was in the main pasture so she wouldn't follow us etc. Of course she came down eventually since it was slow going with Martha. Got Martha in the stall. Now i need to close the gate, but its also the gate that goes to the 'outside' world. So I'm using my body language, including my foot, to persuade Martha to stay in the small pen. Then I have to close the gate whle keeping Daisy in the big pen and Martha in the small pen.

Got them all situated, tied Daisy. Martha seemed a bit worried - sticking her head through the fence etc. So i threw her a chunk of hay, which worked. So by now its really starting to get dark. I get Daisy's front feed cleaned pretty easily. The backs were iffy. Of course the gelding is standing right on the other side of the fence playing with Daisy's lead rope. she did kinda freak out and kick a bit, but I just picked it right back up. Didn't get them cleaned but I made her hold them up for me. good enough, now I can barely see its so dark.

Managed to get everyone released and un-haltered with no pissy fits from Daisy and no one escaping. I think that's pretty stinking good for tonight. Good experience for Martha to understand being haltered doesn't necessarily mean you're going to be loaded into a trailer. And that its ok for her to be closed off from Daisy ( but she could still see her).

So I need to get another gate or possibly a stall guard for when I need them separated. Might just make a super simple half gate for seperation purposes. This weekend I plan to get Daisy's feet nice and clean. I need to start doing it at lunch.

i can't wait for the day where I can have one tied and the other one can hang out. If that's possible. Or I just need a hitching post outside the pen. Especially one with LIGHTS! That would be so rad.

more daily donk

Your Daily Donk......

Monday, November 2, 2009

Daisy & Martha 11.1.09

lunch time scratchings......

Today at lunch I went out to see the girls. I petted Daisy a bit, then started over towards Martha and of course I had to tell Daisy 'go do something else' and she did. I walked over to Martha & she didn't budge or even seem 'unsure', gave her some neck scratchings, worked down her back, and over her shoulders. I'm keeping everything extremely short so I don't overwhelm her.

This morning she got to take off her halter, I let her sniff it while it was bunched up in my hand, and gave her some love. Then I rearranged it into another 'shape' and let her see it again, and told her she was a good girl for sniffing the scary halter that just changed shapes LOL.

Hanging out. :)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Daisy has a buddy!!

This is Martha!
she came from a local lady, right now she's on a trial basis to see how well she fits with Daisy.

some background, that I know, her parents are BLM burros, she came to live with the lady about a year ago, they think she is about 4 years old now. She was pretty much wild when the lady got her. She's really only halter broke her. I believe she said that her feet had been handled a little bit.

Pretty wore out from today, so you get pics, you'll get the detailed 'hauling' details later :)

so far, they're working it out :)

**update** ( more details )
So we went & picked up miss Martha Saturday morning. Had a hellva time getting her in the trailer, but managed. LOL. She got a peppermint once she was in :) She did great walking to the pasture, walked her around a bit, then she brayed. LOL. and Daisy brayed back! it was the longest bray ever!! Walked Martha around some more, I was trying to show her a particular section of the fence but she was almost in sight of Daisy and when she was I almost went skiing LOL. I hollered to my BF 'here we come!!' and to be a 'gate' LOL cuz the way our property is set up - the gate was holding Daisy in the small pen. Martha got to the gate & the sniffed. Daisy was hooting and hollering and rearing & trying to sniff all at the same time.

after a bit my BF walked Martha back to the other end of the pasture, then hollered to let Daisy loose. Daisy hung out next to me a bit, then here came Martha down the alleyway! They both were in the pen & Daisy was acting all crazy ( not really though, as you can see by the video). So everything went smoother than expected and they were both soon grazing in the pasture. Feeding time the first night was interesting, but this morning it was much better.

My trimmer came out to see how things were going ( she's fantastic trimmer and donk person btw ) She let me know what was to be expected out in the pasture. Daisy isn't allowed to bully or be crazy donk while the humans are out there. After a couple of 're-directions' she got the point. We spent alot of time out there this morning with both of them. My trimmer actually got to pet Martha quite a bit, we pretty much consider her still 'wild' because of the way she acts, unsure of humans. that quickly changed, soon she was stepping towards my trimmer and my best friend who was also out there. Realizing that humans were awesome for getting those 'itchy' spots. My trimmer actually got to the point where she could scratch Martha's tail, I thought that was really awesome. she attempted to see how she is with her feet, and she's def gonna need some work there. But her overall attitude is great, very thoughtful & respectful of our space. My trimmer thinks its a good match, with Martha being not as head strong as Daisy but being a more 'stable' and 'sane' donk than Daisy.

the only way I could describe Daisy's behavior is that of a spoiled only child LOL!! I found myself leaning towards Martha's 'side' and telling Daisy she just needed to 'get over herself'. I have noticed a change in Daisy this morning as far as her love for attention - a week ago she had that 'ugh it's you' attitude, now she's back to the 'oh mom, hold my head and scratch my ears' attitude.

they both had lots of scratching and visitors today. I'm really impressed with Martha's acceptance to humans compared to yesterday. I think things are going to work out well. Already they're standing closer together, and the 'I'm gonna get you' behavior is decreasing. Daisy kept trying to approach Martha from behind previously ( like a male, which martha would say 'none of it!'), and now she's starting to approach her face & say 'hi'.

I thought it was funny that they haven't brayed at all, except when Martha first got there. I even warned my neighbors that it might be 'loud' for awhile, but we've had the exact opposite.

So far Martha has landed one kick to Daisy. LOL or so we think, all I heard was the 'THWACK!' Daisy is really under socialized, and I think this is going to be so good for her. I think its also exciting to have a new & different donk that has the complete opposite mentality as Daisy - which means sane & normal donk LOL

so all is good right now, my best friend & I went out this afternoon and lazed around with the donks in the warm weather. I think in no time they will be best buds. so now for the pics!! WOOO HOOO!!

and a vid of the first meeting

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Thursday, October 15, 2009

doneky butter. LOL

Today I'm so happy with Daisy!! she let me clean all her feet with no trouble!! and clean them good too!!! Tied her to the pine tree in the middle of the pasture since it was gorgeous weather.

Yesterday we had a 'touchy' foot, the right hind, she kicked out after fighting a bit. But I made sure I picked it back up again by the time I was done & she was relaxed, END ON A GOOD NOTE. always. this time we did 3 feet un-haltered, then the last one haltered & tied.

Day before that I got all four cleaned out pretty good ( not as good as today) WITHOUT being haltered or tied.

With the rainy/muddy season here she's getting cleaned everyday!

She's getting trimmed this Saturday, can't wait to get pics & see what the trimmer says. She also finally is ok with her stall, so that way I know shes outta the mud & wetness when she's eating.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Daisy's first saddled ride!!

Yesterday my best friend & I decided it was time to ride Daisy with her saddle on!!
she did amazing, we kept her on the lead *just in case*, but really nothing happned and she was very good & willing. I even got her to *whoa* two times on verbal command only!! she got lots of praises every time she did the right thing.
so here are some pics, and a video!!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Obstacle course, saddled 10.9.09

Saddled Daisy up & took her through the obstacle course, kept it nice & short. She did great. Here's some pics.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

ground tying! RAD

yesterday at lunch I went out to give Daisy's feet a quick hoof cleaning & brush down. I didn't really feel like tying her up, so I just 'ground tied' her - I put the halter on, but didn't actually tie the lead rope to anything, I just let it hang to the ground. I cleaned all four feet with NO problem!! she didn't budge an inch!! oh it was amazing! :)

Also noticed that the turn out is helping - she is starting to keep her hoof wall on the front feet, she's not pawing nearly as much as she used to. good news! woo hoo!!

she was good for a quick brush down, but I warn ya! for some reason right now brushing a fuzzy donk creates static electricity!! I shocked her on the nose when I went to kiss her! I felt so bad!!

Peeking out

I should repaint the shed, dunno of the paint would stick!! Lol

Daily Daisy

Taken with the g1

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

obstacle course!

haltered Daisy up for a short run through the obstacle course, I haven't really worked with her much since before I went on vacation. So I made it a point to keep this session short.

Pulled out a tarp & spread it out with a tire on each corner to keep it from flying away - it's pretty breezy here today. set up the remaining 4x4 poles I have which is two LOL, set up the tires so that if she attempted to avoid the poles she's have to go over tires which = not as fun/easy.

She immediately sniffed the tarp as soon as I laid it out. I set up the poles so that one end was on the tire and the other end is on the ground. First I asked her to cross the poles, she did great. I really made sure I was giving her lots of praise for any amount of try - since I kinda start forgetting since I expect more from her & foreget to keep up the praise. then we moved onto the tarp, she sniffed, I asked, she refused & went to the next side. She realized that I didn't move & still wanted her to 'come' with me. As soon as shes put a foot on it I praised her. I let her sit & think about it, which wasn't long. then I asked her to cross it. She did so willingly!

praise, praise, praise.

I asked her to come with me back to the poles, she then started to 'donkify' me by pushing into me with her jaw. I told her to whoa, but she continued to push into me. for some reason my immediate response was to grab the lead rope from the opposite side of her head & apply pressure in the direction she was pointing her head ( i had to reach over her back/neck to do this), not sure if it was the right thing or not, but it worked. Her reaction was almost 'whoa! what the heck' - during this time I was telling her to quit it, before i did the reach over. LOL.

After that she didn't really try it again, I guess she's just always testing the water! back over the poles we went, this time it was even better - she was kinda weird about her legs last time, this time she was nice & balanced. I turned her around and asked her to walk between the poles. then to whoa, then to back a couple times. She did all of it, kinda got stuck on *back* but she eventually remembered what I wanted.

Back over the poles, then to the tarp, this time NO hesitation!! did the poles, then the tarp, then the poles, and we were done. I was randomly asking her to whoa, then back, then walk off in between the obstacles.

pretty good short session!!
I think it really helps that she has access to that area all the time now, becuase now she's not so worried about eating when we're out there :)

This afternoon we did some brushing, just a quick once over, she was great. Except for the part where i accumulated some static electricty & shocked her when I went to kiss her on the nose!!
Rubbed a bit of hoofmaker on her front hooves, and then wormed her - which was followed by a peppermint!! OOH!!

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About Me

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I am an artist who tries different mediums. I airbrush, graphite, braiding, and now I'm obsessed with sewing. I created this blog to keep all my creations in one place. Like an online portfolio. Thanks for looking. to check out my items for sale on etsy -

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