Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Show Donkey! And Friends

 Have I mentioned I missed showing?  

Have I mentioned I like infecting (enabling?) the next generation with the love of horses and showing?  It's really self serving.  If kids learn to love showing, there will be parents who pay for shows and more shows will be offered for kids to compete in - ergo I get to continue showing too!  Win win!  (winner winner!) 

So we recently had the opportunity to do just that.  A local facility is also very novice-friendly focused and, in partnership with the Alberta Donkey and Mule Association, hosted an introduction to showing and obstacles clinic followed by an open show.  I thought it would be a fantastic opportunity to get Phillippe out for some exposure, get Ali out with Jasmine and we invited our good friends Kelsey, and her 6-year-old daughter Autumn, along with us.  

My plan worked great!  Autumn learned loads about handling her mini, One-Eyed-Willy, who was surprisingly willing with all obstacles for a pony with very limited vision, and even won some ribbons in the show on Sunday.  

Fortunately all 3 littles fit in the 2-horse trailer and everyone had their own space. 

Phillippe gained SO MUCH CONFIDENCE!!!  He was very ready to leave the premises when we'd first arrived, and couldn't stand still.  Training a donkey has been a whole new avenue of patience and approach, but I'm enjoying it.  He learned he could walk over the donkey-eating tarp and that he could stand quietly for halter and showmanship for several minutes at a time.  He did so well in his in-hand that we actually won the senior showmanship.  He was the youngest animal in the class (of 9) and was super cooperative for me.  

Our final tally was: Open Long Ears (class for donkeys and mules specifically) 3rd, Halter Junior Horse (animal) 3rd, Senior Showmanship 1st (plus top long-ears of the class, another 1st), and an honorary 1st for costume class participation.  We did Trail In-Hand and took 5th out of 20+ entries as well!  Thrilled doesn't even come close.  

Ali won the Junior Horse halter class, won the egg and spoon in hand and took home a 4th in her showmanship class.  

Autumn and little Willy also got an honorary first place for costume, another for lead-line and a 4th in her pee-wee showmanship class.  She very politely asked if she can come back again to the next show.  Absolutely kiddo.  We'll definitely do this again.  



Happy Horseing!