Tuesday, November 10, 2015

No More Trainy Wheels & Update on Beautiful Girl





“Master your hands and your legs to create a rectangle of support around and for the horse. He will learn you can be a resource for his safety. Sometimes a horse APPEARS to spook or act-up or doesn’t listen. A horse looks for a way out of trouble. He has all these open doors; front, sides, but you have the ability to close these doors with your hands and legs. The horse not only respects that, but craves it.” - Buck Brannaman

This was a special week for Leah and me.  I don't have a round pen at home, but I felt confidant to start working with her trainer-free in the arena.  That time, building trust, and today's lesson, gave me the confidence to hit the trails.  The skills I learned could all be summed up in the Buck Brannaman quote above.  It was all about learning how to support her.

She's still very green and I'm super green with green horses, but we mastered enough skills to keep it together out in the open spaces.  The worst thing she did was break into a trot to get that forward escape, but we circled back to the trail, and she moved right back into a nice forward walk.


(Warming up in the arena at Riverside State Park)


I wanted to update you on Beautiful Girl, too.  My farrier came out, but couldn't find an abscess.  She did express pain around the upper portion of the frog.  Her ankle is a little swollen today, but my vet said it's probably because she isn't putting weight on that foot. We're going to give it one more day to see what happens.  My farrier is coming by in the morning to take another look.  It could still be an abscess.  She's putting more weight on it tonight than she did yesterday or earlier today.

15 comments:

  1. I love that quote and I'm jealous of being able to ride in a national park!

    Leah may have a bruise that is improving. Sometimes they can turn to abscesses but can just clear up.

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    1. I live in Spokane, and I have to say it may be the most equestrian friendly city anywhere. We have so many parks with well-kept trails to ride all within 5-20 minutes from my home. Riverside is 5 minutes away and has a round pen, arena, equestrian camping sites and a 25 mile trail, much of it along the Spokane River. It's paradise for horse people.

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  2. It sounds like things are coming around nicely in you horse handling. I had not heard that quote of Buck's, but it certainly does sum things up nicely. I have several of his videos and love watching them on wintry days when I can't see the horses! I will now listen closer for the quote.
    Bionic Cowgirl

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    1. It's a great quote. My trainer has been telling me the same thing at our lessons, but in different words. It's the foundation for riding any horse, but especially green ones who lack confidence. I plan to watch his videos this winter, too. :) He's a wise horseman.

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  3. Glad to hear you're doing so well with your girl you took her out on trails. Yeah! for both of you. Wish we had some nice parks around here but we don't.

    Hope Beautiful Girl is feeling better soon.

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    1. Thank you, and I want to say I am so sorry you lost your sweet heart horse, Dusty. You were partners for so long. Our sweet friends are fragile. My thoughts are with you today and will be for a long time as you move on without her.

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  4. "She's still very green and I'm super green with green horses, but we mastered enough skills to keep it together out in the open spaces." <<-- I hope to be able to say this same thing very soon. It's nice to have someone who is going through this about the same time I am. You two are much farther ahead than Skeeter and I, but seeing your successes really helps build my confidence (I know that sounds crazy, sorry).

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    1. We are like mirror images of each other right now. I think we each struggle in the same areas, too, learning to support our horses through contact, when we're used to light/minimal contact and neck reining. It is making dig a lot deeper though, and that's a good thing. I still have to finish training Beautiful Girl--who will, hopefully, be sound again.

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  5. This is great news about Leah. Regarding Beautiful, a lot of times abscesses can't be detected. If I don't see an obvious bruise or swelling on the day the lameness appears, I always assume it is an abscess and treat for it with Epsom Salt soaks and sometimes poultice wraps. I don't know if those treatments really shorten the duration of the abscess or not. Oh, and I treat for pain.

    You must live near my brother. He's just up the street from Riverside State Park. Didn't they film Benny and Joon there? That's one of my favorite movies.

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    1. Nuz Muz, I've missed you. I tried to access your blog, but it's invitation only,and I couldn't get in. Your brother is probably very close to us. Does he ride?

      As for Beautiful, I think you're right. She is expressing more sensitivity in the frog even as she's supporting more weight each day. We've given her two good soaks in warm water and Epson salts. I'm pretty confident she's on the road to recovery.

      Hope to see you at your blog.

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    2. No, my brother doesn't ride. You probably don't want to know him. (Don't ask.) Gosh! I've have so many people ask about my blog in the past 24 hours that I guess I should just make it public again. Thanks for having an interest in it.

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  6. You & Leah make a good looking pair hitting those trails - good for you girls.

    I've hoped to see NuzMuz posting again soon also.

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    1. Well, thank you, Mrs. Shoes. And, we'll have to badger Nuz Muz together.

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  7. Wonderful quote from Buck! I think of what he's describing as cradling or hugging the horse's body. Awesome that you two went out on the trails together!! That's where the real bonding begins, I think. That's where Eagle and me need to be...

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    1. I agree that bonding really takes off on the trails. Horses love to be out in the open spaces and there is a great deal of trust between the two of you. You have to trust them not to run away and they have to trust you to protect and support them away from the herd where predators roam.

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