Arroyo, a weanling
Posted by Irina Yastrebova on Monday, November 24, 2014 06:47 PM
The time to wean Arro was approaching and I was trying to decide on how to do it. I had couple ideas:
- One was to take Regala to my friend's place and remove her completely from Arro's life for a while
- The other was to create a temporary electric fence dividing my big paddock in two and putting Arro with Santo keeping Regala by herself
I liked the idea of Regala staying home right from the start. I decided to give it a try. We built another gate and stretched 3 strands of 1.5"
electric tape supported by temporary plastic posts. I was arguing with my husband that we needed 4 strands, otherwise, Arro might decide to join his mom. And he did! :)
Not right away but at night's feeding squeezing himself under the bottom strand which was 1.5 feet from the ground. Next morning we installed another strand.
This did the trick. Arro is now into his third week of being a weanling. Santo is a very good babysitter, he is gentle and genuinely loves Arro. And Arro is very much attached to
Santo following him around, eating together and spending time together. Regala acted like she didn't really notice the separation and wasn't concerned at all.
The fact that Arro can see his mom made separation very easy on everybody, nobody got stressed out much which made me very happy. It was on November 2d, Arro's 6 month birthday.
A few days into separation came winter with snow and very cold temperature. I decided to put horses in the barn for the night. I lead Santo and left gate open for Arro to follow.
Arro didn't follow Santo into the barn but went to a hay bale :) It was dark because I put horses inside around 10 pm. After putting Santo into his stall I went to catch Arro who was
kind of confused and didn't know what to do. The wind was blowing and snow was whirling around us. I had a flashlight on my head and at first Arro wasn't keen
on letting me near him. So for a few minutes we circled around each other :) Finally I put a halter on him. After that he came with me no questions asked. He found grain in his stall and
became very busy. I brought Regala in. Arro's stall is between other two. Arro could see both horses and touch them through the grill. Finishing the
grain he picked up his head and squealed trying to figure out why he is all by himself. Neither Santo nor Regala paid much attention to him :) Next morning Arro looked rested and calm, his coat was full of shavings which meant he slept. However, he tried to jump out of his stall when I took Santo out. He swung his front legs on the dutch door and I had to pick up the whip
and give him a tap to spook him back into his stall. It worked :) When it was his turn Arro was a perfect gentlemen and walked out with me to the paddock without any theatrics. I did have a helmet on just in case :) By now horses spent another 4 nights in the barn and Arro knows exactly where his stall is and walks right into it.
The situation I was interested in is working with Regala after separation. When I brought her to the barn for grooming and tacking Arro got agitated and called to her. She didn't bother to answer back. I rode her in my arena and then went on a cool down walk that lasted for 30 sec and was 50 m in length :) Arro became so frantic seeing his mom leave I didn't dare to continue. Next day we went for a 3 min cool down walk. Arro did run a bit and call but much more relaxed. On a third day I left for 10 min and Arro didn't even squeal. Now I can leave for an hour to work Regala in the fields. Santo calls out more than her son does :)
Very often I let Arro out when I ride Santo. Arro doesn't go anywhere, he hangs out near hay and munches on it while I ride. I bring Arro in for grooming while Santo is in the barn cooling down. First time I did it Arro was so uncomfortable being with Santo in the isle instead of his mom I had to keep him in for less than a minute. I couldn't even groom him he was so worried. Interesting fact, so was Santo. The whole situation was like -"Oh, My God!" - for both of them :) Again, next time was better and now it is a routine procedure. Arro gets groomed, his feet picked up and stuff put on him like saddle pads, girths, surcingles, etc. Arro leads very well now and responds to gentle tug on the lead rope if he slows too much down. Also, Arro grew out of his baby halter and now wears one for yearlings :)
Check out Arro's pictures by clicking here
. Click on small pictures to see the larger versions. Arro is chestnut and does not look like he will gray out. Because his sire Hablador is gray and Andalusians are so often gray the IALHA (International Andalusian and Lusitano Horse Association)
asked for his picture when they received his registration request. They didn't believe he is chestnut and not graying out :) I wish he would gray like Santo did who was also born chestnut. Oh, well, I will had a red head for a horse LOL