One of my missions over the next few weeks, is to teach Sóley the Foalie how to load into the van with her mother, Hetja, so that we can eventually move them into their winter field at Leradale.
We caught Lilja and Hetja and led them over to the indoor school, with Sóley happily following along too.
We put Lilja out of the way and concentrated on Hetja and Sóley.
This is completely new territory but Sóley let me easily catch and put a headcollar on her. Daisy attached a lunge line. Good idea!
We did a spot of leading and then I walked Hetja into the van, leaving Sóley at the bottom of the ramp wondering what to do next.
Sóley: Where’s Mum gone?
Sóley: Ah, here you are.
Sóley: You want me to do what?
Sóley: Seriously. Just give me a nose kissey and I will think about it.
Sóley: No, I’ve decided I don’t want to think about it.
So we hung a haynet in the van to keep Hetja occupied and Sóley could see that her mother was happy, relaxed and eating.
That was the decider for Sóley. She held her own investigation.
It was thorough.
And next thing, before you know it, she had her feet on the ramp.
Sniff, sniff, sniff…..
I walked behind and slipped out a bucket of food for Hetja and one for Sóley too (in a strategic position).
I moved the food in tiny steps until Sóley had walked into the van all by herself.
Mission achieved with minimal fuss.
And absolutely no lying down on the ramp having a tantrum, like others we know – that was Lilja’s party trick when she was a foal.
And we will be repeating this in regular training sessions until one day we put up the ramp and drive off to Leradale.