Leaps Off-The-Wall

Thursday, August 12, 2021 —(In 10 days, August’s full “Sturgeon” moon will rise nearest to earth.)

Here’s a photo showing my new way of transporting all the equines to and from my neighbor’s pasture. We’re about to go across the street for their daily hour or so of grazing on my neighbor’s pasture.

For years, I’ve hand-led them there. Our travel begins by marching up a steep gravel road that crosses my property. The horses move fine with me, but not the donkey, who lags and forces heavy pulls on her lead rope. Upon reaching that hilltop, I’m worn out.

Unfortunately, there’s more with the donkey who dislikes traveling between two horses. She continually resists and leans against the lead rope. By the time we’re at John’s entry gate, I’ve little remaining energy.

It’s the same coming home. Donkey needs dragging across the street, and up the hill toward our own horse containment gate.

An option is to take the donkey separately. That would force multiple trips to and from John’s, a wearing idea.

A couple of weeks ago, and long having recognized that donkey needs exercise against her ever-increasing pot belly, I gambled. After hitching her to the Gater, I forced her to trot behind it. We began by circling in the dry lot for a mile, and after a week added a half-mile.

She usually argues but doesn’t win against the Gater. Sometimes even travels easily with it.

Donkeys have their own ways of processing. Don’t ask me, I just keep going with the flow. Bottom line, this method works for she’s losing weight.

That got me thinking about easing our travels to and from John’s.

After hitching to the Gater all three animals, with donkey between the horses, I drove very slowly up and over my hill and across the street to John’s gate. The horses moved correctly, and believe it or not, with Pimmy still resisting but unable to refuse.

This method of transporting for me works well. Daily, it shortens the time to get them to pasture and later home again. It eases my physical self, makes my mental self happier.

Oh, Pimmy! Those Gater experiences make me try to think more outside the box. We might stumble onto more successes. New experiences might reveal ahead some way of training you to pull a pony wagon.

Dear Friends: These activities take knowing-well participating animals, and ensuring their safety. Diana

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