Training to Lunge - Pt. 1

Training to Lunge, Part I

Introducing the Runner to the Lunge Caveson

Lisa brings Jordan out of his stall and clips him onto the cross ties, before turning to tell what she's doing. Motioning to the young stallion she says, "Today I'll be introducing Jordan to the lunge caveson." She takes a new caveson off a hook and shows it to the apprentices. "This, as you can see, is a lunge caveson. It is very much like a bridle except for a few differences. The main difference is that there is no bit." Then she points to the nose band. "The nose band has three rings on it, where you attach the lunge line." She points out the three rings, one in the center of the nose band and one on each side. Then she walks over to Jordan.

Lisa holds the lunge caveson out to Jordan letting him sniff it and learn what it is as well as its scent. "I'm letting him get used to the caveson as I have for the last few days. Once he is comfortable with me running it over his body then I'll start to put it on him." She pats Jordan's neck as she walks around him letting the caveson run lightly over his body. Standing close to his hindquarters she walks around to the other side and repeats the procedure. Jordan's ears flick back and forth registering what is going on, interested, and not scared.

She smiles pleased with how it's going. She stops a minute, "Does anyone have any questions before I continue?" Her eyes survey the Apprentices, "No? Okay." She turns to Mairen who's been lurking near the door, "Hey Mairen, would you be able to hold Jordan for me?" She unclips his crossties and snaps the lead back on then hands it to Mairen. "I'm going to slip his halter around his neck so that if he should try and take off we can still have some control of him." Next she undoes all the buckles on the caveson that are needed. Slipping the caveson over her shoulder momentarily, she undoes the buckle on the halter and puts it around Jordan's neck. "Now I'm going to hold the caveson under his nose for a bit. As long as he doesn't mind that I can continue. And if at any point your runner starts spooking it means you're going too fast and you should go back to what you were doing before." She adds, "If it's comfortable doing that."

She slides the caveson off her shoulder and holds it under the black muzzle, talking quietly to Jordan. "Keep talking to your runner during the whole process. It'll keep it calmer and make your job easier." Holding the caveson there for around half a minute she continues. "Now you'll want to bring the caveson up around your runner's head. Like this." Slowly but steadily she raises the caveson untill the noseband rests lightly on the tip of Jordan's muzzle. "Now is a good time to wait a minute, keeping the caveson right where it is. If your runner's going to spook, he will now or in a few steps." She watches Jordan's ears that are pricked forward. "His ears are telling me that he interested, and alert. Probably also attentive." She rubs his neck talking to him when she's not saying anything to the apprentices.

"Okay, he's accepting this all very well. In fact, today's lesson is almost done. Now I'll be expecting something to happen." Then she mutters, "Be it good or bad." As she speaks she raises the caveson higher up Jordan's head. "I'm going to slip it on. I'm not going to do the throat latch up yet so if he does spook i can slip it off quickly." She raises the caveson up till she's about ready to pull it over his ears. Jordan snorts nosily at the caveson but doesn't do much else. "Okay, I'll put it over his ears then wait. We'll either get a spooked runner or a happy one and seeing as how he hasn't objected to anything else yet, he should be fine." She pulls it over one ear then the next and strokes Jordan's neck. His ears flick back then forth and he snorts a few more times. Lisa talks in soothing tones, and Mairen, at his shoulder, does the same.

With a grin she turns to the Apprentices. "Looks like he's accepting it. Now I'll buckle the throat latch and noseband, check for tightness, and that'll be all." She slips her hand under his jowl and takes one end of the throatlatch and buckles it. She places four fingers under the throatlatch finding it neither to tight nor loose. "I'm using the four fingers for the throat latch and two for the noseband although other people use other methods." She does up the noseband slipping the piece through the two keepers, the turns to the Apprentices. "That's mainly it. Later, if anyone has any questions I'd be glad to answer them, but now I have to put this boy away." She turns and pats Jordan, then thanks Mairen for her help.

This lesson will be continued in Part Two .

A POSTSCRIPT TO VISITORS: Please note that these lessons are part of the curriculum for a *fictional* Craft that makes up a section of an online role-playing game. While the information here is intended to be accurate and informative and have some actual relevance to real-life animals, you must understand that it is set on a fictional colony planet and that this is not a real animal reference!

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