Progress on Yak Halter Training

We’re a bit behind on halter training, so we need to get busy. Zigzag and Zephyr are growing fast. Luckily the mild weather we’ve been having since after Christmas makes for pleasant work outside these days.

Yak calf with red halter and slack lead rope.
Zigzag after a successful walk around the corral

The first time on halter, these little guys were sure the world was coming to an end. For the first few sessions, we followed the recommendations of more experienced yak ranchers and let posts, rather than our arms, do most of the work. Once we got halters on, we tied their leads to posts for thirty to forty minutes at a time. Whenever Zigzag and Zephyr stopped pulling against the rope, we gave them praise and scratches. They quickly learned to stand calmly with loose leads.

Now we’re moving on to new lessons: getting them to walk with us while keeping the lead rope slack.

Profile of yak calf with red halter and red lead rope
Zigzag stands calmly with a slack lead.

They’ve been making steady progress in each session and getting lots of scratches and treats and rewards. Now, they follow me around like puppies when they’re off halter too.

Yak calve on halter eating grain from a pan
Zephyr chowing down on barley treats before being released.
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