Tonight I took my two new Arab halters out to the barn to try them on Sinwaan. Why two? I made a post on a messageboard that I was looking for an Arab halter and in the meantime found one on eBay and bid on it. A day or two after the bid I had a lady contact me with a nice looking halter at a decent price. It was the size I needed, so I bought both of them. They are quite different from each other. The one pictured at left was made by Pat Dangel of WA and is more of the native style halter. It is a rust color and quite pretty on Sinwaan with his rust colored fleabites. Pat added a throat-latch for me when she found out I would need it for a halter class. (Photo taken from eBay ad, the bay horse has done some endurance himself!)
The other one (the one I used tonight to start training) is black and complete with chain and lead. I was hoping I could just disconnect the chain and lead on this one and use it on the other one but it doesn't look like that will be possible. This one came from a woman named Michelle.
Well my first challenge was figuring out how to put the darn thing on. There is only one buckle and that is at the poll. The throat-latch does not come off (or maybe it does and I don't know how) and there is no way to undo the chain for the chin. Sinwaan was very patient with me, although I am sure he wondered what I was doing at the barn AFTER dinner tonight as the sun was setting. It was super tight and for a minute I didn't think it would go on all the way. I loosened it a hole to the end and then managed to get it on his big head. The chain was really tight but seemed like it might work, at least for today.
I found a whip in the tack room and took my bag of dried-out baby carrots with me out to the gravel driveway. There we practiced standing, moving feet, staying and getting his head up and slightly out. Thanks to the training we have done for endurance, he has no trouble at all with the trotting in hand. By the end of it we had made a little progress but I still don't know what the heck I am doing so I am hoping to get a clue here pretty soon.