In some of my prior posts you may have seen some pictures of Emma, my barn owner's 7 year old daughter. She is smart as a whip and is always thinking, observing, asking questions, and formulating opinions. Some time last week Emma informed me that horses were rather stupid animals and couldn't learn things very quickly. She felt that Aspen couldn't be anything but confused when I tried to "play" with her.
I've been slowly showing her different games on the ground, explaining bits of horse psychology here and there as best I can in terms a 7yr old can understand. Today I once again let Emma try a few of the games on the ground and was pleased to hear from her that she could see how Aspen had improved since the last time she had come out to watch us. As her Grandma approached from the house Emma yelled to her to come quick! Hurry! She just had to see how smart this horse was! All she could talk about was how smart Aspen was and how fun she was and how she could do all kinds of cool things!!!! I was SO proud of Aspen for helping me demonstrate the principles of PNH and being a good example of a thinking, smart, playful partner! She couldn't wait to show her Grandma all the things Aspen could do! :)
I let her get on (my first time with anyone on Aspen besides me) and led her around through the various obstacles and through the pasture to graze. Emma had so much fun and can't wait to come out and play with us some more. I just couldn't be happier to hear her change her opinion on her own accord and begin to see how horses think and approach things they're either afraid or curious about. Very cool! :)