Last week, Izzy and I had a couple of knock down, drag down fights. The dude just wants to do what he wants to do. I tried to work through his issues by doing suppling exercises, rebalancing, and so on. Finally, I chucked the dressage exercises and simply cowgirled up on his butt.
It took three days of me kicking the heck out of him for an hour each day. By Friday, he was a perfect gentleman again. Our connection was still unsteady and his rhythm still faltered, but he was back on my team and willing to try. I loaded him up on Saturday afternoon for our trip to Moorpark. I was much encouraged.
Izzy has now done three schooling shows this year, and while we don't have scores yet that are exciting to share, he has shown huge growth over the last few months. For each show he has gotten obviously better. This is something that I never got with Sydney - he got worse. Izzy's progress has been very linear at shows, and it is clear that his confidence is building.
He ate and drank like a rock star this weekend, something he hasn't done all year, even at away lessons. And while he had worried moments in his stall and while tied to the trailer, most of the time he was simply alert and watchful. In fact, we left him in the barn with complete confidence while we drove into town for dinner.