It has always been about motivating Ben. He makes his displeasure so clear: we do some work and so often the next time I come to him, he heads away.
Today, on a beautiful autumn afternoon, I went up to the shed. Ben came to check that I was not producing some food and turned away. I stood in the door and said “Ben, you are just so lazy!” He turned, looked at me and came back. I went out and he and Rosie followed. I started to head up to my picadero but got distracted on the way photographing some hedgerow.
Ben waited. I came back to the shed to get a headcollar. Rosie came up to the stable, ready to go in, as she always does when I work with Ben. Ben went up the track. “Here we go again”, I thought. I looked up. Ben was waiting just outside the picadero.
Wow. He wanted to go in there to work. For the last few days we have been going in to play with stimulating some movement. This has not been very successful so, to cheer both of us up, I thought I would introduce some clicker training. Bingo. Light switched on, Ben interested, alert, soft eyed and today he showed me that he wanted some more.
Afterwards, I got his headcollar and leadrope and we went to the back gate to head out for a walk. It was locked as usual and I found I had forgotten my key. “Just wait here while I go to the house to get it” I said to Ben. He did.
We had a good walk. He is less footy on our chip and tar surface than a week ago, but still very sensitive on the many loose stones around.
I know that Rosie understands everything I say. I am beginning to think that Ben does too.