|ASK MEREDITH A QUESTION|
|Have a question for Meredith or want to give us feedback? |
Question: How do you get your donkeys to lunge? My donkey will not go in a circle around me. All he wants to do is follow me and he gets scared and runs away if I use a whip.
Answer: Lunging a donkey on a lunge line in an open area may seem like an impossible task, but when you take the time to break things down into very small steps and do them in a logical and sequential order that they can understand, there is nothing they will not do for you. People have often told me that training donkeys are very different from training horses and mules, but I have always used the same basic approach with only a few “tweaks” here and there. I have to make those kinds of small adjustments for each individual equine anyway! So, “No,” it’s not that different!
The tack used with the “Elbow Pull” is not uncomfortable for your equine and it is impossible to affect their posture without using a snaffle bit. Since they do not respect a hard tie and will fling themselves over backward if you try, horses need a little different approach when securing the “Elbow Pull” than do donkeys and mules (covered in our EQUUS REVISITED DVD sold in our STORE). It will help him to maintain his good equine posture in an ideal balance while executing all the moves that are asked. Most disobedience is generally due to a loss of balance or just falling out of good posture! Repetition in this tack and equipment changes their body carriage to a more ideal posture that will become their habitual way of going. This is much healthier, reduces the incidence of arthritis and allows the internal organs to operate as intended. Over the long term, this approach to training adds longevity to their use-life. After doing their core strength balanced leading exercises on the flat ground and then later over obstacles, the equine graduates to lunging in the Round Pen. I introduce the lunge line in the Round Pen so we won’t get into a pulling match in an open area. I keep it loose and only do a “squeeze-release” on the lunge line with my fingers as the outside front foot comes forward into suspension. This causes the front foot to land on the arc of the circle without throwing the animal off balance and becomes the “cue” to keep them on the circle in the open areas later without having to pull drastically on the lunge line!
If you email me at firstname.lastname@example.org,
I am happy to send you even more details about this for FREE!
“I have been associated with Meredith Hodges for many years and know her to be a renowned world equine professional, specializing in mules. She has spent a lifetime of dedication and focus on the improvement and advancement of this breed. She has always concentrated on educating through patience, kindness, consideration and respect for her students and her mules. No one is more highly respected in this field and I know that her knowledge is a must for every person who owns and loves their mules. She has definitely “raised the bar” for the standard of excellence for equine educational books.”
– Richard Shrake, A.Q.H.A. Congress Judge
I have known Meredith and her work for around thirty years and have always been an admirer. What Meredith doesn't know about training mules and donkeys isn't worth knowing. I am delighted to see this colorful new edition of her book, Training Mules and Donkeys: A Logical Approach to Longears. As with children and dogs, a well-trained mule or donkey is a happy one - every mule or donkey lover needs this book to train them well and keep them both happy. I cannot recommend this book too highly, it is an excellent piece of work and every mule-or donkey-lover should have one.
– Lorraine Hawkins, British Mule Society
"Meredith and her Lucky Three Ranch has shared her passion for the American mule through her work as a trainer, artist, educator and author. She has broken barriers like no one else in her quest to tell the unique story of the Mule. Her Ranch facilities as well as her work through many venues and organizations have gone to show the amazing bond that exists between humans and animals - especially the mule. In addition to all this, she is a tireless supporter and promoter of numerous worthy causes, events and organizations."
– Jennifer Roeser, McGee Creek Pack Station
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INTRODUCING OUR BRAND NEW DOCUMENTARY
Rock and Roll: Diary of a Rescue documents the progress of victories and set-backs that the Belgian Draft Mule Team encountered after being rescued from slaughter, first by Fran and Larry Howe of the Bitteroot Mule Company, and finally by Meredith Hodges and the Lucky Three Ranch team of professionals. This is a poignant story of how Rock gallantly gave his all and how his teammate, Roll, slowly emerged from his shell and learned to trust us and—even more importantly—himself. Our regimen of compassion, respect, patience and physical therapy helped both mules to obtain their own personal miracle. Rock and Roll touched everyone’s soul by proving they were ready, willing and able to give everything they could, straight from their enormous hearts...a touching story you won’t want to miss!
WATCH THE TRAILER
STREAM ON DEMAND THIS SEPTEMBER
AND DON'T FORGET OUR OTHER AMAZING DOCUMENTARIES
ON DVD OR ON VIDEO ON DEMAND!
Buy the JASPER MOVIE BUNDLE and get the
JASPER COMPLETE BOOK SET
Buy the HORSE AND MULE FOUNDATION PACKAGE
and get the COMPLETE PACKAGE
Buy the DONKEY FOUNDATION PACKAGE
and get the COMPLETE PACKAGE
|Hearts and Horses Therapeutic Riding Stable|
LONGEARS are no stranger to the Hearts and Horses Therapeutic Riding Stable in Loveland, Colorado. Their work with LONGEARS as therapy animals began with Katie
who was honored at the Lucky Three Ranch Jasper Celebration Day in 2005 and later retired. Sadie
(Foaled in 1997), Allie
(Foaled in 2003) and Lass
(Foaled in 2003) are still enjoying what they do and are working diligently with clients of all kinds: disabled, at-risk kids, Alzheimer’s patients, Veterans and many more. LONGEARS make incredibly successful therapy animals! Hearts and Horses is one of the very best equine therapy stables in the whole world!
CLICK ON IMAGES TO VIEW LARGER
Isn’t this virus thing supposed to keep us locked in our homes and eating doughnuts? So far, that hasn’t happened to me this summer. With a handicapped hubby and all these critturs to take care of--and out of trouble--. Laundry, dirty dishes, mule pucky and dog leavins, too. Well, I was kinda lost in there for a while and then the 27 mules on the combined painting had to be done by Hells Canyon show, so I jumped on that for three weeks and got’er done. Print will be out by October and I’m sure the Lucky Three web site will show it to you--and try to con ya into buying the thing!
Then, my dear friend and neighbor, Jack Parnell with the fine line of Clydesdale horses, decided he had another book inside his heart and came to me with the script. It is about an ancient apple tree on his ranch and this tree has a tale to tell and wisdom to impart and Jack needs pictures to go with the story and will I do them? SURE. So, your mule artist has been chained to the drawing board and painting stuff you will not believe when this sweet book comes out. The “kicker” is, the printer wants it OUT and in the stores for the Christmas market and they pronounce a deadline of Sept 1. I’m NOT going to make it!!! They are going to hafta go to plan B. Every illustration (19 of them) is full of details and situations and period stuff that has to be done right so it has gone really slow sometimes. Then, this week Jack dreamed up a whole ‘nuther illustration and asked me to do the cover, which I thought had been covered by a photo of the tree. Well, the photo is still IN but he wants MORE, so I am adding the tree’s “friends” to the cover.
Haven’t been on my sweet mule for a year now. Too dangerous to ride alone and too hard getting on and off. I miss it but I don’t miss all the work it takes to get the trailer out and everything gathered to go with it and traveling to a spot we can trail in--should one of my friends volunteer to go with me. I am grateful for Jack’s sweet story and the opportunity to be a part of its message.
Mornings are already chilly in north Idaho. What happened to summer? I am behind on EVERYTHING!!! Keep those traces outta them places!!
WE ARE SHOWCASING BONNIE'S AWESOME
ART & APPAREL AT THE
Lucky Three Ranch Web Store
NEW BONNIE SHIELDS ART HAS
ARRIVED AT OUR WEB STORE!
GET IT BEFORE IT IS GONE!!!!
CLICK ON IMAGES TO VIEW LARGER
Visit Bonnie's website
to find out more about the
Wild and Wonderful World of
Tennessee Mule Artist, Cowboy Cartoonist & True Artist!
Or for more information call Bonnie at 208-263-6534
After needing to cancel the Spring and Summer session at Hearts & Horses, the organization has entered their third phase of reopening this month and are happy to welcome back participants that need special care and support while riding. To ensure the highest level of safety for their riders, volunteers and staff, Hearts & Horses developed an emergency task force to help navigate the challenging and ever-changing landscape of the health and safety recommendations from state and federal agencies. While their services may look a little different with new robust safety and sanitation measures, they have been able to continue serving the wide cross-section of people with physical, mental and social disabilities in our community. While the smiles may be behind masks and face shields, the mission of Hearts & Horses to promote the well-being of these underserved populations has adapted to meet the needs of their participants.
The new culture of adapting to change and keeping everyone safe has carried over to the Hearts & Horses’ annual fundraising event the Lucky Hearts Gala. This event is presented by Lucky Three Ranch, and this year marks the 20th
Anniversary of this important event! In the spirit of change and adapting to given circumstances, the 20th
Annual Lucky Hearts Gala will be a virtual experience which provides an opportunity for sponsors, auction donors and the organization to reach far more people by bringing the mission of Hearts & Horses into their homes to be shared with family and friends, wherever they may be!
For more information about the 20th
Annual Lucky Hearts Gala Presented by Lucky Three Ranch and how you can get involved, visit www.heartsandhorses.org/lucky-hearts-gala
Jan Pollema, Executive Director
HORSES. HEALING. HOPE.
Loveland, CO | 970-663-4200 | 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization
| || |
Is the summer over yet? These long, hot days, some of us long for cooler weather, long shaggy coats on our longears, cups of hot chocolate. I suppose it's winter in the other half of the world - are they longing for summer days? A ride on the beach with your mule? Sitting by the pond with a cane pole and a line, "helped" by donkeys or other curious creatures? Or just sitting back in a rocker on the porch and watching the donkeys take a nap in the shade of the big tree.
Some days are just longer than others, more emails, more phone calls, more days when the cows push the fence down or there is a fire across the street… yet we all keep pushing forward, doing what we can to live life and manage things for our family and our animals.
Right now it's time to put up hay, and some fields are looking like they have quite the yield, fingers crossed for everyone that the quality is high and supply is plentiful. We are doing our own... now if we can get a good mix of rain and sunshine for one more cutting! Got to see the draft horses, mustang, donkey, longhorn cattle and the goats through the winter!
Whether you have a pair of longears or a whole spread, you will know, as I do, the wonderful days when you have those moments to just sit and enjoy them, or those days where everything goes wrong and it is an emergency. I hope you have more of the former rather than of the latter. My farm has now but one living Longear, dear Rabbit, and he will live out his days here, but this may see the last of the donkeys and mules for me… right now I feel to old to start again. Perhaps 2021 will come in with new, fresh energy and enthusiasm! Only a few more months, and we can turn a new leaf, hopefully with better news and a brighter outlook!
Stay safe, hug your longears, until next time,
Leah Patton, Office Manager, ADMS
The Am. Donkey & Mule Soc. | PO Box 1210, Lewisville TX 75067 | (972) 219-0781.
Newsletter: the BRAYER magazine 76+ pgs 6X/yr, $27 US, $37 Canada, $50 overseas. We now accept Paypal,Visa/MC (+$1 courtesy fee appreciated). Reg info, forms, fees on our website at http://www.lovelongears.com/main.htm
Keep checking back on our new and
improved website for regular updates...it is constantly being updated with new and interesting information!
It is the place to visit for all things equine!
The LTR BLOG has stories from around the world. ABOUT LTR tells about Meredith and the Lucky Three Ranch, under TRAINING you will find Ask Meredith with commonly asked Q & A’s, Mule Facts, video TRAINING TIPS,VIDEO ON DEMAND (RFD-TV Shows and more) MULE CROSSING articles, LONGEARS MUSIC videos, Misc. Music Videos, What's New With Roll? (Story of the Rescue Draft Mules, ROCK & ROLL), Another Augie & Spuds Adventure(Training miniature donkeys), Wrangler's Donkey Diary (Management & training of our new donkey gelding) and a new category has just been added titled CHASITY’S CHALLENGES! Check out our TOURS (personalized clinics) and keep up with the latest developments in the equine industry with RESOURCES/NEWS (Longears Calendar of Events, Classifieds, Longears Clubs, Therapeutic Riding, Equine Rescues, Equine Welfare in the News, Wild Mustangs/Burros Campaign and Horse Slaughter facts & FAQ's). And of course, you are welcome to peruse our STORE. This website is like no other!
WE AIM TO PLEASE!
And for the kids, don’t forget to visit JASPER’S NEW & IMPROVED WEBSITE for lots of fun, entertainment and the ultimate Longears Learning experience!