Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Al fresco dining at it's best

As we were walking towards the trailer yesterday afternoon, Pippi and I, I was explaining to her how great it was going to be to eat dinner outside in the trailer. She was not buying it, saw the trailer, and stopped short. In my hand was the hay bag, filled to the rim, in my other the lead rope attached to a horse that was clearly not interested in going closer to the trailer.
So I circled around the other side of the trailer, the non scary side, and we went right up to the open door in the back. And there we stood, for a long time. I hung the hay bag in place in the far corner of the trailer, we took a walk around the trailer again, stood at the door, leaning in........... repeat, repeat, repeat. Ate some fallen hay on the trailer floor, walked back, forward again, sniffed the floor. I stepped into the trailer, picked up some hay and held it out, "come on girl, come on, walk up, come on." Her back legs wanted to, and walked all the way up to her front legs, and she was balancing as if on a ball. Just could not get those front legs to move, and I worried that she would fall forward as stretched as she was. I backed her up, looked at her and said "Pippi, naa er du sulten, saa kom inn hit og spis middagen din." (Pippi, you are hungry, so come on in and eat your dinner) She looked at me, breathed, raised one leg, placed it inside the trailer, did not like the sound it made, but quickly decided to keep going. She walked in quietly and slowly, and I showed her the hay bag. I shut the door behind her and went in the escape door, and stood on the other side of the closed separator wall. She was not eating, walked in place, and I spoke with her. She looked at me, and I told her to go ahead and poop, and she did. I showed her the hay again, and she started to eat frantically. I lowered the bag so that she was eating with her head lowered, and it seemed to calm her. I also fed her the grain, which she really enjoyed.
After a less that successfull attempt Monday night, I had decided to feed her a small breakfast Tuesday morning so that at dinner time she would have an extra incentive to enter the trailer for her feed. I am sure that did play a part in why she finally went for it, but I also think that my mindset played a huge role. When I spoke to her in my native tongue, I am sure I sounded different, and perhaps a little calmer. My intention perhaps clearer, I don't know, but I realize that it may have been just enough to show her to trust me.
We stayed in the trailer, eating, for about 30 minutes, before we walked calmly off the trailer.
It was fantastic.


  1. Well, that sounds like a successful trailer training session. I have to ask. What language were you speaking? I used to proofread software programs in a lot of different languages, but haven't done it in a long time.

  2. Thank you - it was successful and after Monday we both needed a positive outcome badly.
    My native language is Norwegian, I was born and raised in Norway, and I am still a Norwegian citizen.


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