it’s been very cold here. oh so cold, but also very beautiful. there is something about below zero temperatures that makes the landscape extra pretty.
i crawled through the fence and called to billy. he was digging and grazing and digging and grazing, but when i called him, he lifted his head and cantered to me through the snow. so beautiful!
then i scratched him and asked him to to stay put while i walked a little ways away and then i would call him to me. i had an idea in my head that i wanted to capture on camera.
he was looking off into the distance, behind me, to the ranch across the road. they have cows, horses and the call of the coyote comes from over there at night. he was looking and looking. clearly he had noticed something that my weak human eyes and ears could not detect. i stood with him while he looked.
then he decided that the smart thing would be to get out of there! he turned and took off through the snow. here were the action shots i wanted! he was all right brained and worried, but looked so awesome running through the snow…
billy was staring off, snorting and blowing and flipping his tail over his back…
he would come to me seeking comfort and then turn back to the scary corner. i was freezing. i thought about going back in the house and then i stopped.
this was a wonderful opportunity for me to show billy what a good leader i could be. why not use it? so i began walking away from the scary corner of the pasture. i just meandered away. billy was racing around me, back and forth in front of me, galloping around the pasture with his tail over his back. then he would come straight to me and seek comfort some more. i would offer it with him standing close, then i would ask that he back off and seek it at a little distance from me. he would stand for a few seconds, then take off again. i just continued to make my way across the pasture towards the shelter and his pen. i would stop and wait, he would come to me and stand by me, i would ask him to back up a bit and stay calm. finally after about 5 minutes of total right brain extrovert behavior he was able to shake his body, blow out normally, lick and chew and shake his body again. talk about adrenaline!!
once he did that then i made my way back to his pen. if he got ahead of me, then i would stop immediately. he would stop and come back around to his place at my shoulder and off we would go again. when he was back in his body i offered him some scratches and he told me where the itches were. then we continued on our walk back to his pen. once there i scratched a bit more, he got a drink of water and i brought him some more hay to get him through the cold cold night.
something interesting. often in the past, he would act this way while i was in the field with him and i would make my way back to his pen and then go about my business, not paying attention to how he was feeling. even though i know that every moment i am in his mind, sight, hearing, we are communicating and i am either being a good leader or a bad one, i would not use that time to be a good leader, i would just wander off and let him deal with his feelings by himself. today i was thinking that all that did was tell him to be emotional when i’m around and when i leave he can get himself under control, eventually.
a perfect example of take the time it take so it takes less time.