So all the others in the show team have made the gate and back...but Jazz (Princess Jasmine) as I suspected from the start has become my problem child. Maybe I shouldn't have pushed her as we had a major freak out today - very platoonesque. Back to basics for this one.
The moment of truth...will they walk to the gate and back down the race on their leads, a distance of about 10 metres? Bella - didn't even look up from the bucket. Romeo - a little more cautious but made it all the way there and back. Prince Naveen is so small and meek he just goes wherever. Princess Jasmine...I'll leave until tomorrow...
I do it with a few other alpacas milling around so that they don't get spooked by being on their own and just keep calling them towards t
Next up we get hands on to get them familiar with either judges (show team) or kids (pets) molesting them. By now I have shifted them into the slightly bigger pen for their lead practice. I keep four alpacas in the pen at a time so it doesn't become too open a space and give them room to pick up speed and freak. I am still basically just walking around in circles with them but it is a bigger circle. However we want them to be friendly pets or comfortable in the show ring so t
Excellent session with the crew today for many reasons. Firstly the fresh air cleared a post-wedding hangover. Secondly they all accepted the lead without ANY issues. Not one Ghandi (a paca that responds to the lead by just sitting down and refusing to move). Nor did we have a Sgt Elias (a paca that throws themselves into the air, convulses and dramatically collapses on the floor AKA Sgt Elias at the end of Platoon). This is not a good look in the show ring and a bit of a Hac
The quality time with the crew paid off. Today we sailed through The Bucket, The Hand, The Halter and were able to move swiftly onto The Lead-Rope. In this stage I use a long lead rope and place it across their backs and follow them around, encouraging them to move on request by standing behind them, slightly to one side. If I want them to go right, I stand to their left and vice versa. If I want them to stop, I move forwards slightly to their shoulder. I am pretty sure this
Things didn't go so great today as due to the commitments of My Other Life I had not been near them for a few days. I had a few struggling with me when I popped the halter on, most notably one of our show entries Princess Jasmine. I got my first kick of the process from said Princess. Just as I so often do with my couch to 5km app, I went back to the beginning. I spent time with them, fed them lots of nuts and generally curried favour, whilst making a mental note not to leave
Big day today. Their first time with a halter on. I use my arms and body to block them up against the wooden fences in the pens, and then hold them there by gently leaning on them, meaning I have two hands free to put the halter on. Princess Jasmine was a bit feisty but all the rest stood still and let me put the halters on. The slowly slowly approach is paying off.
I left the halters on for a few hours and then as the weather deteriorated I managed to get busy with somethi