Well, I went out Friday afternoon and bought a clicker and a green plush dog frisbee. I introduced the clicker as we were walking back from the pasture. I clicked and treated several times in a row so that he associated the click with the treat. Once we got into the barn aisle, I just stood and held him in the cross tie area. I showed him the frisbee target and as soon as he sniffed/touched it I C/T (clicked/treat). I held the clicker in the same hand as the target and had the treat ready in my other hand so that it was an instant reward. I think he was catching on a little. He did try sniffing my treat pocket and I said no sharply, paused, then made him back a step. I am not sure if I could C/T for that, because he already knows 'back' as a command with various cues (verbal and physical). I am inclined to not c/t for anything that he already knows and is something I consider basic manners. However, I could be wrong. Anyhow, I started moving the target around to the side of his body where he would have to turn his head, but not so far he had to take a step. I also put it up high but that scared him. He seemed to lose interest easier if the target was not directly in front of him. After a break for fly spray and grooming I tried again. He seemed to know right away that touching was getting him treats. I put the target at nose level between the bars of a stall so that he could easily touch it. He wasn't very interested and I don't think he quite got that it was still the target if I wasn't holding it. He did touch it twice, but I'm not sure there was a connection. I had him target a few more times with me holding it and then called it a day.
Unfortunately, the day got a little more exciting.
I dewormed Boomer and had his rope looped over a bridle hook up high. I went to throw away the dewormer trash and put away my grooming stuff when I head hooves against the concrete, timid at first and then faster. By the time I got out to see him he was already running towards his field. Luckily the whole property is fenced and gated. He didn't go far, just until he found his friend at the fence line-maybe 300 feet. I think his rope fell, spooked him and he ran/panicked when he saw that the rope was 'chasing' him. I saw him eyeing the rope as he kind of skittered sideways from it. So, after I caught him, I got another lead rope and dragged it behind me as I lead him all around the property. I threw it at his legs and snaked it around. He was definitely scared at first, kicking at the rope and snorting. After about 10-15 minutes he was much calmer and ignored me as I flicked the rope all over him, including legs. So, that was exciting, but I think we ended on a positive note. I will make a point of dragging a rope more often when I lead him around. That would have been a great clicker targeting exercise, but we hadn't quite caught on yet, plus he doesn't like treats after being dewormed.
So, initial experiment was a success. We have our work cut out for us. I have a feeling that ground tying and/or standing on a mat are important tools in our future.