Spring is on its way with daffodils, snowdrops, calves, lambs etc.
Trevor, our Gotland sheep has been given to us because he thought he was a human being and Linda and Gary of Hunua couldn't contain him behind a fence. It took a week of training and now he stays with the sheep. He is so clever. I run him up and down the driveway next to the four-wheeler. He would sit on the seat with me if I would let him. I have great ideas of training him for our shows for senior citizens. I have had sheep jumping through hoops down in the Manawatu before we shifted up here so it shouldn't be too hard.
Ziggy, our black and white pinto horse is proving amazing with handicapped clients. A few days ago she coped with a tall, heavily built adult yelling on top of her and banging one leg on the side of her without any concerns. I was leading her and telling her quietly that she was the best horse in the world to reassure her. What horses put up with always amazes me.
Well, off to clean out the chook house. There is never a day without something to do here but I love it.
The weather has slowed down our farm walks and pony rides so I have actually got the books to our accountant for the end of the financial year - how boring!
I have joined the International Horse Agility Club and using Merlin, our palomino Welsh horse for starters to compete. Bex Tasker, my instructor from Tauranga, urged me to join. She won last December the competition which competes monthly against entrants from all over the world. It was great to be welcomed by Mary Connoghan of Ireland who I did a course under several years ago. It is so good for the horses to be challenged in a fun way for the many obstacles they are asked to do so I am so looking forward to starting. Being the clicker system the horses get a tiny bit of carrot if they succeed and if they don't they miss out. This makes them try harder. Funnily enough, they eventually are happy to do what you ask without a treat because they enjoy it so much. My biggest problem is that I am used to micro-managing my horses and this system asks you to let the horse use its own brains and think the problem out - quite amazing and I am sure this is the way horse training should be. It is a shame I didn't know this 40 years ago!
The school holidays are here next week so we are looking forward to seeing everyone come and have farm walks and pony rides.
We have two new members to the animal farm - given to us by Colin Schimdt of Hunua. They are lovely alpacas who are quite chatty in a soft musical way. Cavalier is cream and very happy to eat out of our hands. Krueger is a rich mahogany and likes to sum us up like our others do before coming forward. Alpacas are the easiest of all farm animals to keep and so gentle.
Teddy no longer lives in a cage.
Teddy arrives for breakfast & dinner daily by our dining door.