Riding Updates

Natty let the cat out of the bag big-time today. She has been trying to convince me she’s really lazy and not at all maneuverable, but now I know better. I managed to open the pasture gate while riding her today, and after we were out, she picked up the pace to a really nice brisk walk all over the property. Now I think she’s only interested in moving if there’s something interesting to check out. I hope to take them on the trails soon, but the stable is surrounded by Christmas tree fields, and there are lots of helicopters and semis all over the place right now harvesting the Christmas trees, and I don’t want the horses getting spooked when they don’t know how to get home.

You know how little kids tell it like it is? Well, the farrier for the other horses was at the barn today and had his little daughter with him. She wandered out to the arena and was watching me trying to ride. She asked me, “Is she really lazy?” and I just laughed and said yep, sure is. Then I walked her out to the pasture to try to ride there, and the little girl said, “She’s huge!” and I laughed again and said yep, sure is.

I’ve tried the sideways-pull business people are writing about to get horses to lead and Natty just turns her head all the way around so her nose touches her side. So I started testing her to see if anything else will make her walk. I lay down on her neck and throw my arms around her – nothing! I rest my hand on her rump and lean way back – nothing! I swing my legs back and forth – nothing. I swing my legs forward and wrap them around her neck – she turns her head around and gives me the evil eye, but that’s it! The horse tolerates everything! Almost makes me wish I hadn’t tested her quite so much before riding because now she just expects this kind of shenanigans from me.

And in the weekly Chance update, little fellow must love mud! He was filthy from head to toe when I arrived. I got most of the mud off, but there is still some on his face and ears that I couldn’t get off. He has had a runny eye this week (I think probably got something in there when he rolled because he rubs his face on the ground) so I got some ointment to put in it, and he was fine with that. We’ll see if it helps. I found a fun foal growth chart and some good articles on the internet this week, and Chance’s size/growth rate has been right on the line between warmblood and draft his whole life. According to the articles, he should mature to about 16.2 and 1500 pounds. Big fella! I’ll try to get pictures today.

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