​ ​Click the video image below to watch.
A bubble she couldn't resist

Grace and her stablemate Daisy were destined to step on the trailer to the slaughterhouse when Colleen, a fellow horse advocate, rescued both last minute. Turns out, both mares were pregnant. Daisy had her baby on the trailer ride to Colleen's, Grace gave birth a week later. I played with Grace and her filly several times using my mindful connections approach. Grace had been a broodmare, turned out at all times, only to be handled for vet visits. I'd describe her as extremely leery of humans. She is not like a wild horse who has no experience with humans and thus is possibly open and curious. Grace sees no value in connecting with humans since her experiences have been generally unpleasant. 
Though progress had been made over the summer ... haltering her, working on picking and filing her hooves ... one wrong haltering experience at a new barn set Grace back to being untouchable. Libby and I committed ourselves to collaborating with Grace, we told her that we want to help her understand that a relationship with humans can be rewarding, in return we want to learn from her how we can provide proof that it might be worth her while to give humans a chance. Last week, Libby went to see Grace and Daisy and decided to play some Chopin for Grace while Grace had lunch ... a time when her head is low and in parasympathetic mode ... great idea.
On 2/6/18 we went to visit again and initially spent time with Daisy who has no challenges. I figured Daisy might be a great mirror for Grace to see that humans and horses can connect in joy. Next Libby played Chopin again and suddenly, we had created an energy bubble Grace couldn't resist. Grace tried to stay near the opposite fence for a while ... stretching her head toward the music her feet glued to the ground. Eventually, Grace decided to take a walk through the paddock to get closer, entering our bubble. See what happens next ...
Nicole Birkholzer


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