I swear sometimes I get the feeling I can "communicate" with everyone else's animals but mine! LOL, it's just so easy to "find" everyone elses animals, hard to recognise and pinpoint mine! So trusting of course, no matter what, they he (Smokey) can hear and understand ME even when I'm to thick to pinpoint him we had a chat yesterday....
Tuesday was an exciting day, had a lesson on Mac and while putting him back in the paddock I discovered Smokey had once again fallen out of his area (while I was putting Mac away!)
He took 1/2 the sheep netting away from the fence (lucky it was only tacked on temporarily to stop youngest goat getting under the fence!) but upon falling out of his taped area he was in chest high hay grass!!!!! Ever seen a Kai not wanting to get caught?!!!!
He didn't even fall for the handfuls of hay left in Mac's bucket *sigh* so I went inside got HIS feedbowl with a handful of chaff (this is 1/2 hour later!) at which point he promptly said "feed?!" and hey presto he was caught! Brat!
Chucked him in the backyard (long rich, clover filled grass!) till I could sort his fence out and remove the sheep netting etc, so decided in his high pressure day to keep the pressure on him and bridle him up for the first time.... Took about 5 mins of him going backwards away from it, till I used my brains and turned his butt around so he could only back INTO the shed. I also told him Sola would be very disappointed with him when I told her how he was behaving, at which point (who knows which thing worked or if it was a combination!) he took the bridle going on without a fuss!
It WAS a high pressure day for him tho so he was not smoochy at all LOL.
Yesterday I followed up with the bridle again. Turned him straight round bum into the shed and he was STILL avoiding it! Told him again Sola would be so sad that he hasn't remembered what he was taught, and again, hey presto, bit in mouth, bridle on (getting the picture of how much he thinks of Sola?!)
Did some more work with him and filed his feet (and fingers) again, gave him his feed and then told him I really really REALLY needed a cuddle from him, and I hate feeling like we have this separation between us and I know trust is earned and it's all early days BUT I need him to show me he's willing to try etc etc etc. Had a good old heart to heart with him. He finished eating and had a couple of mouthfuls of grass which I said he could do (gets told off for trying to snatch mouthfuls while working of course!) he had one mouthful sniffed another and then spun around to where I was sitting on a log holding his leadrope.
He gave me my cuddles! :o)
He took my cap off my head and nuzzled all thru my hair, he kissed my nose, my cheeks and snuffled all over my face, he let me pull his lips and kiss him, scratch his feet for him and he did all that of his own volition and for that time we did nothing but love each other, no pressure of education, or desensitizing or anything, just the two of us meeting in love, it was lovely!
Last night when giving him more grass and today doing the same he "allowed" me to give him scratches on his body and bum while he was head down eating the grass! His biggest trust issue is that being touched while his head is down and he's vulnerable. So although I got some little snippets of feelings from him while we were having our cuddles he spoke most clearly of all thru his physical actions and that was just what I needed right then, a big physical cuddle with him!