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 Yuki Visits the Ranch

Two weeks ago I decided that since no one else was at the house to take him out, and caging him for more hours than necessary is unkind, I would take him with me while I do my volunteer work at the horse therapy ranch.

I go to this ranch every Monday and all I do is basically wrangle horses for a few hours. Ie, catch them, feed them, brush them, move them from one place to another, and get their tac (or take it off). I chose not to deal with the therapy kids. And dealing with the horses is therapeutic to me. All the horses are past their prime and this ranch is probably the last stop for them.

I was worried that Yuki would want to bark at the horses or chase and grab the ankle of some mishapping kid. He is a corgi and that sort of stuff would be in his blood. I was also worried that other dogs would be there and Yuki would try to take them on.

The good news is that he was the perfect dog! I kept him on a leash at all times and he spent his time tied up in the tac room. He was silent and happy after he acclimated to his surroundings (and was no longer scared pissless). He also completely ignored the horses; acted like they were part of the surroundings and went about his day.

The scariest moment was when someone’s ’special attention’ lab dog broke command and bounded over to Yukito, then jumped all over him. My dog didn’t bite or even pull his lip. He was absolutely fine with sniffing this dog, then coming back to me when he was done.

And, while spending his time with the tac, he loved the attention that all the volunteers gave him. Didn’t try to stop anyone from moving Western saddles around or getting other things. I came in and two of the trainers were all over him with affection. And he loved everyone. The only thing I didn’t do (for a prolonged period, anyway) was take him out to the therapy kids as I didn’t know how he’s react to flailing arms and screaming and didn’t want to push everything on his first trip.

Over all, he was very good and no one minded if I took him again. This week, however, I didn’t... and it didn’t matter because the day was canceled due to the heat.

Feel free to discuss taking your dogs around farms or ranches. I’m still wondering how I’d teach him (or some future corgi I’d own) about ranch boundries... I don’t want Yuki freeing himself from the collar and throwing himself into a hot fence, or running into the lesson and getting horse-kicked. He may stay permanently on a leash if I take him in the future.

07/09/10  02:42pm

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