What on earth am I talking about? Well, I rotated the cows this morning, my bum knee braced up with an old scarf I've had forever (it's my favorite for tying over my ears when a cool/cold wind blows).
I had already opened and closed the 'wood' gates and was pushing the two old cows (I call them 96 and 98--those are their birth years branded on their hips), when I decided that I wanted to roll down my sleeves. Instead of stopping Snip in order to do so, I just wrapped the reins around the saddle horn and started rolling down my sleeves. I was doing a little directional work with my legs, but not much. All of a sudden, I realized that he was working the hindmost cow!
By that I mean he was weaving back and forth keeping her moving (roughly) straight along, while keeping himself at the correct angle to her rear hips. I've been doing this manually with him (and this particular set of cows) pretty much ever since I started the on-horseback rotation. I think maybe he's got it! In other words, I may not have to control him so much as I have had to do. I was also pleased that he wasn't crowding the old girl--that is something he tends to do.
All in all, I have been seeing improvement in Snip's behavoir; some of it more slight than others, but he's "got it", if you know what I mean. (I even think he knows when I want him to stop or slow down; but he just ignores me for whatever reason floating around between his perky ears.) I think that when he misbehaves these days, it's mostly that--bad behavior, not ignorance. (Now...how to break that bad behavior streak? My main guess, patience and constancy...)