Thursday, March 28, 2013

I Love My Ponies

In other less depressing news, I finally have started my horses back to work after the long never-ending winter. It's always a little tricky trying to get them going again. On the one hand (hoof?) they are super unfit (me too!), but on the other, they are WILD and super excited to be ridden again. It's a fine line between working them down, and working them into an injury. Especially with my #1, my best friend, my old man:
My Rio
I rode for the first time Sunday. It was extra exciting since it was my first time on the new guy, Ducky. I decided since I'm all alone that I should give him a little tranquilizer. (Number one rule of riding: NEVER ride alone. But when you live by yourself and your horses, it's the only option.) I think it was the right decision as my neighbor was making terrifying noises right next to my riding ring. At one point, he dragged an aluminum ladder across his driveway, and then dropped it. Maybe not frightening to humans, but horses think this is the end of the world. So thanks to Sedi-vet for sponsoring my ride! All in all, he was very well behaved, and seems to know quite a bit. We have to work on cantering, but I think without the meds, that will be better too. It's a pretty nice view from his little back:
I let Jamp have a little free time in the ring before I got on him. He tends to be spooky and a little run around before I climb on usually helps a lot.
He was pretty well behaved, but halfway through the ride started limping. I was worried I shouldn't have let him run around so much. Thankfully I found a rock in his shoe, and that was the source of the discomfort. Easy fix! Phew! He's a funny guy in that part of him was a little excited and spooky, but the other half was super unfit and lazy. So he'd half spook, and then just stand still. Silly boy!
I saved the best for last. I was having trouble deciding what to do with Rio. I knew he'd be fresh, but I don't like to let him run free too much. He has a bad leg, and too much craziness makes it act up. Similarly, letting him play around too much on the lunge line (basically a long leash, so he's on a circle around me) is also not good for him, but gives me more control. I decided to take my chances and just put on some draw reins for added control. When I first climbed aboard there were some antics, but he quickly settled down and we had a nice little ride.
I couldn't ride Monday or Tuesday, as I was celebrating Passover with my family both nights. But I rode again last night (Wednesday). I let Ducky be tranq-free and he was pretty good!  A little more spooky than the other day, but nothing out of control. I think he's going to be fun to have around. I can't wait to see if he can jump! Jamp was naughty. He hates shadows. HATES THEM. Probably even more than I hate running. And since it was getting to be dusk when I rode, he was beside himself (shadows everywhere!). But we got some work done, and overall it wasn't a terrible ride. I cut them all a little slack as we start back to work, I mean it's been a solid two months of vacation for them. Plus it was a full moon:

I saved Rio for last again. This time I let him lunge for a little bit since it was dark out. I have lights, but they aren't very bright. I also figured since he worked Sunday he wouldn't be too crazy. I was right, he let out a couple big bucks on the lunge line, and then was a perfect gentleman for our ride. Seriously my favorite place to be:
Lord Palmerston ca.1890 " There's nothing… so good for the inside of a man as the outside of a horse." (Especially Rio. He's my main man.)

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