Donkey Training: Level 3 Movement (Ground Work)
When a donkey stands around a long time without being asked to do anything, it can get extremely resistant. Through the first levels, we have built trust and confidence so we hope that this level should be less challenging than if you just started right away with traditional pressure/release ground work.
This level is important in that you are starting to take the leadership role more and more in the relationship you have spent so much time building.
It's also important to start deactivating the opposition reflex that is so strong in a donkey.
With the Foundation (level 1) and Building Confidence (level 2) our donkeys had a lot of choices. With level 3 we are starting to ask for more cooperation with less opportunity to say no.
By the time you get to this point, your donkey should really enjoy being with you. If not, you may need to spend more time in level 1 and 2. Some donkeys take longer than others to get to this point.
If your donkey trusts you and has confidence in his surroundings, using pressure/release for this level should not be a issue. Especially if you reward him for the effort.
⭐What you will learn in this donkey training course:
- Teaching the donkey to move when asked: Cooperation!
- Developing the donkeys concentration
- Being a leader in the partnership
- Moving areas of the donkey
- Developing balance and coordination
- There are 7 Key movement exercises to train for this level. Descriptions of the exercises, why they are important and 7 videos showing each exercise.
- Tips on understanding and using pressure properly for a donkey,
- Tips on proprioception,
- Notes to help
- 2 level up exercises with videos
- Color chart of pressure points on a donkey.
Some people choose to not offer rewards for ground work, But I find that it helps the donkey make the connection with what I'm asking faster and with less pressure. It also helps because my timing isn't always perfect! So I choose to use them since this has worked well for me.
However, in this level. I start to phase out treat rewards. Not completely for every session, I still have fun sessions and hikes where I use treats with the more advanced donkeys! All work and no reward can make a sour donkey!
But it should start to be more about cooperation now. Especially If you choose to train for something advanced like driving or riding. Once I see the donkey make the connection for the exercises in this level the treat rewards get less and less. But they still get praise and scratches.
This level isn't about force, but it is about starting to get cooperation from your donkey without being questioned.