And my other big black stallion, I hear you ask?
Well, Taktur is doing brilliantly. He just goes from strength to strength learning and reading situations all the time.
Bjørn is Taktur’s riding trainer and I am Taktur’s on-the-ground trainer.
Bjørn is teaching him his gaits – that is a good walk, trot, tölt and canter. There may be pace but we are not sure yet. He is getting him to engage his back-quarters and Taktur needs more muscle and topline, hence the extra feeding. Taktur moves naturally very well. He shows this “willingness” that Icelandic trainers want to see and is essential for a good stallion with potential.
I teach Taktur from the ground. I work on his manners and his attitude. He likes me and trusts me which is essential but to be honest, Taktur has a lovely nature so anything I ask of him, he is happy to oblige without an argument. If there is an argument (a rare thing indeed), he listens, takes it on board, thinks about it and then learns. I have yet to meet such a nice chap.
He likes routine but he doesn’t pressure you into it. Instead of loitering with intent for his food by the gate, he just “happens to be in the area”.
I call him, he comes wandering over by himself, having left the herd behind and I open the gate. He walks through, does a perfect turn on the forehand, while I close the gate. He will then follow me over to his food, waits for permission to begin (sometimes at this point I will put his headcollar on) and eats.
When he has finished, he lifts his head up and lets me clip the rope on or put on a headcollar. Then he follows me back to his field where I slip him and he wanders off again to find his friends.
I could not ask for more. There is no barging, no attitude, no anything but peace and perfect manners. My gorgeous gentleman with exemplary manners. Oh, and by the way, he is only four years old.
(and yes I do chop off everyone’s heads if I can, in a photograph!)