What have we already accomplished?

  • Move away from pressure
  • Give his feet
  • Drop head
  • Stand on his mat
  • Saddle
  • Bridle
  • Stand at mounting block
  • Ride (limited)
  • Whoa to voice and seat
  • Move off legs (little bit)
  • Bow
  • Fetch
  • Kick a ball
  • Pick up paint brush, touch target
  • Paw on command

What do I like best about him:

  • He is curious, bordering on fearless
  • Happy and friendly
  • Willing and eager to try new things
  • Doesn’t run me over as much anymore

I wish my horse behaved  better…

  • When we are working I would like it if he slowed down a little and waited for me. He tends to be pushy, impatient and not wait for me to show him/ go onto the next link in the chain.

I wish my horse was…

(If we’re going all out here, and maybe an I can’t wait until)

  • A finished cutting horse who knows high school dressage, reining and a full roster of tricks. Surely that’s not asking too much? 😉

I wish my horse didn’t

  • I can’t think of anything so; I wish he didn’t require so much time that I don’t have. Wish I had more time.

When I got him I dreamed of:

  • Showing him in cutting
  • Getting back into ranch horse competitions and showing again (small dreams compared to now)


Short term goal:

New: Walking with nice collection, head tucked

– Teach to tuck his head standing still

-Hold head tucked position while standing

-Tuck head at a walk

-Hold head tucked position while walking

-Tuck head at a trot


Spanish walk

  • Look for more videos and other instruction
  • Ask for a lift with each leg, then walk forward, repeat
  • Get more height with the lifts
  • Keep working on getting him to step with me

Accomplished, need to keep adding duration and height


  • Keep practicing
  • Extend length of time down
  • Practice holding positions with foot lifting
  • Figure out how to transition to not needing to hold his leg to bow

Doing pretty good, still working


  • He is: picking up the brush, touching target
  • Needs to put brush back in bucket
  • Work on position, stand facing shed/easel, better to paint from
  • Need heavier bucket? easier to get brush in and out of without knocking over
  • Wait until summer, reintroduce real paint

Matt training

  • Extend length of time he will stand
  • Extend distance I can go and he will stay
  • Add more mats, get him to walk between them
  • Refine walk cue
  • Refine stand cue
  • Place mats in a circle, train to walk between them with refined cues
  • Use the mats to teach him to walk in a circle around me

Long term goals

Teach how to work a calf

  • Start teaching from the ground instead of waiting until I can ride
  • Teach him to follow target instead of just touch it
  • Work on turning on the hind quarters
  • Follow cue to turn on hind quarters from a distance, like with head lowering
  • Work over a fence, to maintain distance, and follow moving target
  • Follow moving target from distance, giving good turns on hind quarters
  • Be able to do it without the fence to hold him back (maybe with me standing by him and someone else being the cow?)
  • Or, make a cutting dummie. Teach him to follow it and work by himself while I run it.
  • Transfer to riding, will need another person 🙁
  • Eventually use real cattle!