First Team Outing!
Yes, we had a LOT of leaks on this little outing! At least I know the plumbing is in good order. Wink

The "tip factor" is definitely important with these little wagons. Luckily with the doubletree in place, I think it would be hard to get the wheels to turn far enough to tip the wagon unless the goats were REALLY crooked as well. We'll try to be careful to avoid getting ourselves into that predicament!

Normally we have a seat for this wagon that is at a much more comfortable height. It's a little folding stool that fits perfectly across the wagon box and whose top sits almost level with the sides. But I forgot it at home and there was no going back for it. So we used the trailer block instead. If we hadn't had the water trailer with us we'd have been sitting on the floor!

We got going as fast as a trot. The boys trotted very nicely together and seemed to enjoy going a bit faster, but the person driving felt bad for the person on foot, and it prevented picture-taking, so we kept mostly to a walk.

The boys didn't work equally at first. Finn likes to charge ahead and Sputnik is happy to let him do it, so Finn started getting tired toward the end as he was pulling a larger share of the weight. Finn is generally very responsive to the reins, but it was hard to continually pull him back because the halter would ride up his nose and the reins had very little leverage once that happened. So it's not so much a lack of obedience to pressure as a communication failure due to equipment. Sputnik is quite happy to work if Finn will allow him to, and toward the end as Finn got tired enough to slow down on his own, Sputnik came right up and worked with him. Sputnik also responds very well to a light tap of the whip or a flick of the rein on his butt, so with a little encouragement from behind it was easy to make him step up and come even with Finn. Finn has a "warpath" mentality and Sputnik prefers to mosey, plus Finn, being the boss, likes to insist on being ahead, even if it's just by a nose. But both of them are very obedient when we tell them to slow down or speed up, so it should be easy to get them working as a team with just a bit of practice. Finn was already much better about keeping his horns out of Sputnik's face than he was just the night before. The boys seem to really like being side-by-side because they often walk that way on their own when they're loose.

I ordered some 3 /12" half cheek driving bits. I'm going to try mullen mouth bits for these guys. I think that will help with stability and also be milder for them than the french link I got for Cuzco. These fellas aren't established runaways so the lighter the bit the better. I wish I could have ordered bits with copper mouths (Cuzco's is copper), but most of the copper mullen mouths are 3 3/4", and they are quite a bit more expensive. In the interest of not going completely broke, I went for plain old stainless steel. The bits were cheap enough that I felt justified spending a few extra dollars for expedited shipping. Hopefully they'll be here Monday.

Feel free to share my photos with Jack!
Hello glad the driving expedition when well.
Also the leaks in the plumbing are good in this case. Smile
Bits as long as you size them right of any kind will work fine.
Thoughts: Use Zip Ties to attach to halter Rings, they even allow for some "Adjustment"
If you need to when you take the bridal off just cut the Zip Ties.
They are plenty strong enough to handle goat pressure on the bit.
Use the Black ones they are UV resistant, they do not degrade in sunlight. White ones do.


Here is another old trick I have used myself, use a tieback on the chargey side of the double tree to hold him back and make him work even  with his team mate. Been there done that when one of my drafters would take the "Lead" and pull the whole load till he/she got tired and decided it was better to work in team and split the load.
A nose or two ahead of team mate is ok, no more than that though.
Hope the ideas help. Your doing Good.
Maybe when we both start driving teams of goats we should Collaborate on writing a Driving Goats Book. Smile
Modern Version.
My team will be a Matching Pair of White Goats and you can have the Pair of Colored Goats Team. Smile
Think: She'll be driving Six White Goats Coming Round the Mountain when She Comes.
A old song that Phil could  Play on his fiddle Smile
Yes, I know I am full of goat berries, but in among all of that is some good knowledge to pass on.
Happy Trails 
Have a good drive
hihobaron Blizzard,Fuzzy,Pete , Sam and the Troops in SC
I went for another drive today in the same place, and the boys were even better behaved than yesterday! I was not sure how things would go because Phil had to be at a meeting and couldn't come. I also wasn't sure if the boys would be a bit cranky about having to work two days in a row. But no, they were incredible! There was almost no fussing or squirming while I harnessed and hitched them. Sputnik moved over obediently when I asked, and he stayed where I put him instead of springing right back where he came from. It helped that Finn left Sputnik alone for the most part. It took me almost no time to get them harnessed and hitched even though I was alone. As soon as I backed them away from the truck, I got into the driver's seat (which I remembered to bring with me this time!) and drove them right off. There wasn't a bit of hesitation. I hardly used the whip today, and most of the time when I did use it I barely touched them. The voice commands are already coming together, and I credit a lot of that to the fact that we've spent so much time training these boys to do tricks. They've learned how to listen and they've learned how to learn, so they're picking up the driving commands very quickly.

We only had one brief spot of trouble about 1/3 of the way through the drive, and it was only because I was nice enough to get out of the wagon and offer them a treat ("See if I ever offer you cookies again, boys!"). They'd been going along so nicely at both walk and trot that I stopped (a smooth, calm, even stop I might add), and offered them each some treats. Sputnik was in a much better mood today. He's a pouter, and each of the previous times we drove, he sulked and refused cookies as long as he was hitched to the wagon. But today, other than a brief spell at the beginning, Sputnik eagerly took treats and begged for more, so I know he was enjoying himself. The boys stood perfectly still while I treated them and got back in the wagon and took up the reins. It was not until I said "Walk on!" that things went south. I'm not sure if Finn was trying to go back to the truck or if he was trying to turn toward me and get more cookies, but either way he was not moving forward and was pulling Sputnik around to the left. Sputnik kept trying to go forward on my command, but he's not a leader and would not drag an unwilling Finn in the right direction. I had to get out three or four times and straighten up goats, tangled lines, and crooked harnesses, and Finn got a few solid whacks on the left side before he finally decided that disobedience was both difficult and unpleasant. The whole episode lasted less than five minutes before we were back on our merry way.

We had only one other brief spell when we were about 3/4 of the way back to the truck when the boys suddenly took off at a trot without being asked. I had a hard time getting them to slow down and I thought at first that they were trying to race back to the truck, but I think it was because we were approaching a house with a barking dog and they wanted to pass it as quickly as possible. I spoke gently to them and they calmed down and walked obediently the rest of the way. We also passed a man mowing his lawn near the road and the boys slowed down just a little and looked, but they did not spook or balk. I was very pleased with them. As we approached the truck, Finn tried to turn toward it without permission, but this time he got back in line with just a little correction. I made the boys drive on past the truck and trot a few hundred yards up a side road before I stopped them and got out. I gave them lots of treats (Sputnik was still not sulking!) and I led them back to the truck with an empty wagon as a reward. I am absolutely thrilled at how wonderfully the team is doing. It was only their second "real" drive, and they act like they've had weeks of training! Their good attitudes make me feel confident that the harnesses are fitting well and are adjusted properly, and that the wagon is not too heavy for them. I'm sure we'd have more problems (especially from fussbudget Sputnik) if the work were difficult or uncomfortable. I could not be more pleased! Big Grin
Hello Nanno
Here is another Amish Based draft horses trick. for training young stock.
Usually used in multiple abreast hitches like they use for spring plowing and breaking young horses.
4-6 horses.
It is not considered "nice" by today's standard but is still in use by the Amish.
It is called a "Jockey Stick" .
The way it works is a piece of wood hooked from the cheek rings or bit cut to the spacing you want strait across to the other animals bit or bridal. Reins connected to just the out side horses (Well Trained) when you pull one rein the outside horse goes with it, the horses in the middle of the hitch have no choice but to go the same way.
The Jockey Stick just transfers the pull of the "Driven" horses to the Green horses. to learn to turn with the hitch.
You only need 2 reins to drive the outside animals with. Granted this is a method for open field with a heavy load like a 3-4 bottom plow on behind. It is a "Breaking Method"
I would like to try it on goats, Just a team with halters on, to see how it works.

Happy Trails
hihobaron and the Troops in SC
Wow Nanno, they seem to be going so well! Can you remind me how much ground driving they both have had? Maybe I need to get Koby going with another goat to overcome his hesitation. I still haven't hooked him up to my wagon or easy entry cart yet. I am so pleased for you - am very inspired Smile
Happiness is a baby goat snoring in your lap
Thanks DownUnder Gal! I've hardly done any ground driving with them. Ground driving seemed to make all of us frustrated, so not much was learned and we gave it up. Both goats have had a little experience pulling a load in a single hitch, both to the cart and to the sled. Finn and Sputnik each took turns helping me haul water to the pens in winter when the hoses froze. Finn also has pulled the easy entry cart with kids in it. But they were led, not driven, during those times. Driving is a very new experience for them, but they appear to be taking to it quite naturally. Smile
Hello Nanno and Downunder Gal
To Nanno
When I was training both light horses and draft horses, they learned the Basic commands Walk on, Trot.
Easy(slow down)
Whoe on the lunge line. I don't think you can teach a goat on a lunge line/long line????? Sad
Any way then is when I let a horse start wearing a bit while being lunged. Once they are comfortable mouthing the bit.
It is time to add the surcingle and long lines and ground drive.
Next step Harness and Lunge/ground drive some more.
Next step you need a assistant for "Teaching" the horse to "Pull"
add some length to the tugs so your assistant is out of kicking range. A couple pieces of rope will do.
The basic idea is you have your helper slowly tries to hold the horse back the horse leans into the harness and learn to pull.
Much more detail to training a horse to drive but I will save that for else were. This is for goat Goat Driving after all.
You show Goats Right?
So you train them with a set of handling commands.
That is what my lunge line training dose with horses. Well halter training to.
You using your boy's to drag/skid/stone boat water around last winter was the trick to getting them to pull good. Smile
Granted you were leading them and they were  working single but it was a perfect way to start them each.
I have always started my driving horses as singles, then when they were going good "Teamed them Up"
You just did that in effect, and the results are as you see. Keep making them drag that water around Smile
When you were here you should have picked up 1 of the blue 15 gallon barrels you saw here that I use for feed storage and many other things. They would make good water haulers strapped down on a sled.


Not Goats but lots of power and fun in the snow.

Happy Trails
Keep Pulling
hihobaron Blizzard,Fuzzy, Pete, Sam and the Troops on SC

I like the enthusiasm.  This steer has a job he likes!  I bet it takes a bit longer to hitch the goats and horses eh?  Now I wish I had my yak again.
Hello Charlie Horse
When I was still doing RENDY with BP Competitions we had a guy come in with a Jersey OX  that was Trained to pull a 2 wheel cart like the video showed, plow.ride, and pack. I had horses there for site security and the OX would walk right along with his owner riding when we went on patrol. No Problems.
Also once the RENDY Started no vehicles or post 1840 equipment was allowed in or out of camp area or had to be covered up.
The OX had a nice old style big 2 wheel period correct cart and made regular "Taxi" Runs from car parking to camp with Ice, food etc. Think the old Frankenstein movies for the cart idea.
Get yourself a normal smaller milk breed bovine.
I have had Jerseys, nice quite dispositions. Another one I have had experience with is Brown Swiss. Had friend that raised them and you could not walk into the pasture without them coming to you for a scratch. Of course there are many other bovine breeds out there. Of the above 2 I mentioned for you I would say when you are ready go Brown Swiss.  They are like the Ober's in color and you find both Polled and horned blood lines. Most of the time you will find polled or dehorned, you would want a steer I think. they will get along with most grazing animal you have.
Of course get a bottle calf.
Or you can try a Scotch Highlander or Texas Longhorn (Not noted for good dispositions) Smile
Or a Brama
I am not picking on you just passing on some info from my experience.
Happy Trails
hihobaron and the Troops in SC
Think Mongo in Blazing Saddles Smile

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