Polka Dot Ponies

This will most likely be just a collection of my ramblings. I ride and train horses, so there is bound to be a lot of horse stuff. But I also just like to vent and this seems the perfect place.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Long Line Lesson and Fat Ponies

Yesterday Titan had his first lesson on long lines. He was a bit nervous but good for the most part. He actually went over backwards once which was the scariest thing ever. He was standing and when I asked him to walk he broke into a trot. I very clearly said WALK again and lightly touched the reins. I think it must have startled him a bit as he proceeded to sit down and go over on his back. He actually seemed more surprised than me when it happened. He just rolled to his side and lay there staring at me like 'What just happened??' with the why mama head tilt. I let him just lay for a minute and then asked him to get up. He did and just kept giving me that look. I didn't want to end the lesson on a bad note of course so again I asked him to walk off. He walked off, turned and stopped like a pro. Maybe the tumble knocked some sense into him...
I really want to get out there and give it another go today but it is raining. Blah.

I actually got a new training horse in yesterday as well. It is a horse that J's mom (M) is looking to buy for herself. I had her old horse for about a total of 4 months and it took me that long to convince M to sell her. They had bought her because she was a pretty tri-color paint. She was pretty don't get me wrong but all that prettiness didn't come with much for brains. When they got her home she flipped over backwards on M twice. Then she was brought to me. I got her to the point where she was rideable and could walk/trot/canter both ways and I spur trained her. She was good in the ring and M was even getting along with her well. So after having her for about a month (so 4 lessons with M, as every training horse I have the owners get 1 lesson per week included in the training fees) M decided to take her home because she really couldn't afford to keep her in training forever. After about 2 months I was talking to M and asked her how Rain was doing and her response was that she hadn't gotten the chance to ride her. So after another few weeks Rain ended up back with me and was back to all of her old tricks. This cycle kept happening and eventually when Rain was back with her owners she went over backwards and actually hurt M (it had amazed me that she hadn't been hurt before). After getting her back the first time I started trying to convince M that this was not the right horse for them. She was OK if worked everyday by someone that really knew what they were doing but she was not the kind of horse they could just ride on the weekends for fun. Once I finally convinced her to sell Rain as an advanced adult only horse (we picked very carefully where she went) we started looking for a new horse for her. This is where Hayley comes in. She is a 15.1h 17 yr old well broke broodmare. She has not been ridden in several years and has had a foal every year for the last 9 years. Personally I think she is THRILLED to not be pregnant again. M has ridden her but wants me to try her out for a month. That way M can get some lessons in on her as well. Hayley has an extremely level head and doesn't spook at anything (even when J's 5 yr old brother, K, came flying around the corner of the barn with a garbage bag cape flapping). She is EXTREMELY overweight. So she is now on a strict diet and we will slowly start working her back into shape. And I mean SLOWLY- she jogged around the arena for about 3 minutes when she got here checking everything out and was breathing hard. She is in dire need of a trim and I have a call into the farrier for her and a horse that is coming in tomorrow called Joe.

I am really looking forward to having Joe back. I had him for the summer of 2007 out in NY with me and he is a big puppy dog. He is a cute little paint gelding whose owners just don't spend any time with him. He was apparently a high level HUS horse when they bought him but then they decided to barrel race him and now he can't do HUS to save his life. He is an awesome little games horse and great for just hacking around. He is quite overweight as well as they don't work him at all but basically give him all the feed he wants. It took me an entire spring/summer to get him to a decent weight last time and it took them about 4 weeks to make him fat again.

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