I love this horse!
Tonight I took a step stool into the stall with me when I went to do the compress and antibiotics. I figured I could stand on it and groom him, see what happened. He really needed the grooming, he is a mud monster! I expected him to act funny just seeing the step stool when I led him into the stall, but he didn't care. Cozied right up to it while he ate his hay and I "compressed" his owie. Climbed up and brushed both sides, being pretty ostentatious about the fact that I was on both sides at once. He sure didn't mind. He did pay attention to what was going on, but was not at all worried for the most part. Went to other side, my natural mounting side, did same. He was goofier about that at first. Still didn't actually move, but really watched me, and tensed up a bit at first. He settled in, and I bumped his side, brushed both sides, leaned way over, thumped the other side gently with the brush. Pretended to be about to throw a leg over, bumping and rubbing the side of his rump with my knee and foot. He thought that was weird at first. Finally I put almost all my weight on his back several times, but I couldn't totally commit because I had lumpy objects in the front of my coat (ouch on his back) and I wasn't wearing a helmet, and I had told nobody of my plans... He was wonderful through it all. What a great horse! Then I moved my stool back, unhaltered him, and just sat and listened to them all munching.
What a great night.