Birthday: July 1, 2007
We rescued Selena from horrible and dangerous conditions on a demolition site next to a dual carriageway. She was living in an enclosure with just concrete flooring and no bedding. She was not being fed enough and was having to eat her tiny portions of straw from an old fridge that had been turned upside down. The site was derelict and was littered with hazardous building materials and equipment.
Selena was underweight, had no proper muscle tone and was weak and wobbly. When she arrived we noticed that she didn’t interact with the other horses much and was quiet and shut down. She was also anxious about anyone approaching her with a head collar. As she needed extra feed, we started allowing her to come into an area on her own way from the other horses.
Then we simply introduced targeting using reward-based training. That way, she began to trust us and to follow the target rather than having to be caught with a head-collar and lead-rope. Eventually we re-trained her to enjoy wearing a head-collar as it now meant good things would happen. This seemed to be a breakthrough moment in trust for her and, as she got fitter, she was relaxed and happy enough for us to begin to ride her.
Selena’s progression was going well and she had showed signs of being in season throughout this time so it was a great surprise when she trotted up the field one morning with a foal at foot. To our greater surprise, the foal turned out to be a mule! We ran an online competition and our lovely followers chose Maverick to be his name. It turned out to be very appropriate as he is lively and full of mischief. We have had to upgrade all the fencing since he started escaping at one week old!
Selena has been a fantastic mother to Maverick. We have left him to wean naturally and, at nearly three years old, he is almost fully self-weaned. However, leaving the weaning to happen naturally has meant that we have not been able to work as much with Selena as we would have liked. She has physical issues with her posture and needs a lot of consistent in-hand training. She can also be quite spooky and distracted so we are working on her becoming more calm, self-assured and confident. Selena is a sweet and sensitive horse and we plan to re-introduce riding once her physical issues have stabilised and she is stronger and more balanced. When people come and work with her, they are blown away by how deeply she will connect when you soften and relax. She is truly magical.
Positive Horse Training Spain
Calle Cortijo del Amo, 3
Cacin, Spain 18129
Mobile: 0034 / 6966 72477
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Registered Charity Number: G19707751
Photo Credits: Our photos come from a range of people but we would like to thank Ni Dhunn Imagery and Jacqueline Sheedy in particular for supplying so many of them.