Yesterday was Cookie's first bath of the year. It was a muggy warm day, just perfect for a bath. I don't know if she had ever gotten a bath before, but she did pretty well. She wasn't about to let me wash her face, which was alright. We'll get to that sometime later. She humped up like a roach and danced with her hind feet under her when the water run over her haunches.
At first she wasn't real keen on this whole water and soap stuff. She danced around, stomped her feet and even tried shaking off the water. Then came the shampoo. I tried some Citronella to hopefully help keep away some of the mosquitoes and flies. It worked for about 5 minutes, but man did she turn out pretty! Her white was so clean and bright I had to put sunglasses on because of the glare. Even her tail which is 3 colors came out glistening in the sunshine. At one point she even turned the shampoo bottle over. She's always into something and being nosy.
She did great towards the end with the exception of her hind legs. She still wanted to stomp when the water ran down her legs. Of course when you give them a bath the first thing they want to do is roll, but I wasn't about to let her get dirty quite that fast. I allowed her to eat some hay and took her into her walk-in stall so I could brush out her mane and tail without her just plopping down in the dirt to roll. Using the shedding blade to remove much of the loosened hair and also to remove excess water that was dripping off of her belly. I used 2 different brushes and she was nearly dry so I took her back out to eat more hay and stand in the sun to finish drying. Her hair was so soft. It was like running your hand over chenille.
When she had finally finished drying completely, I turned her loose and told her please don't roll for at least 5 minutes. I worked hard to get you clean so you can at least do me that favor. She actually waited about 10 minutes after I had gone back into the house and only rolled on one side. Amazingly enough she didn't get that dirty.
I know I did things a bit backwards but today I clipped her a bridle path. I went slowly by showing her the pocket clippers then turning them on and showing her what the noise was. I then held it to her shoulder and neck. She did fantastic until I got closer to her ears and her head shot up like a giraffe. I asked her to put her head back down and began again. This time she decided she was going to back up and throw a fit. We went around in a circle a few times. She then said well, it's much easier to just stand here and get it over with. She lowered her head and let me finish clipping. A few times she threw her head up when I got closer to her ears, but settled right back down again.
She likes to think she's in charge, often challenging me to make sure I'm still the boss mare out there. When I got done clipping her I put her fly mask on and went to get her some peppermints for being a good girl. She loves her treats. If I ever leave her and later think I've left on a bad note... she'll always come with her ears raised, nickers galore for a treat. As long as I don't repeat the mistakes I make, she'll forgive and we'll continue to learn together.