These pictures tell the story of work done with Jean (aka Gene) recently. I have also included a recent photo of her and Destiny her foal in the paddock, looking much better but still wary.
Our first carers, Mary and Brian, gave daily care to the ponies. Their larger paddocks meant that the ponies recovered their good looks and health, Destiny being handfed and Gene/Jean coming to feed, but we could not overcome her wariness – she would follow up the paddock as Mary worked nearby, but never closer than about 5-6m. Her future was unsure. Some intensive work was done by one of our members and a local handler Dave … she came closer, but remained wary, out of contact. Then Steve Halfpenny, who does Natural Horsemanship from his base in SA, offered to work with her for 2 days whilst here for a clinic.
You can see from the pictures, great little moments on both days, as Gene/Jean was persuaded that she didn’t need to run away. Exhausting for Steve, the constant attention to what the pony was telling him, and both persuading and blocking as she gradually began to learn about ‘leading’ and other activity with humans. At the end of day 2, we shifted her and Destiny peacefully (taking the time to introduce them to being comfortable in a float) to a new place with small yards where Kerryn and Dave can continue to work with her. She is relating well, following and leading, her feet have been done, and she accepts touch. Destiny will now leave mum very shortly. In the near future Gene/Jean (to be called Spirit in her new home) will be with Lea on long term lease.
Thankyou again for your patience and hard work at Jeparit in the first place, that has given some of these ponies a future life
Sue, Project Hope Horse Welfare Victoria