Win a Horze leather halter!

I’m here to share She Moved to Texas’ contest for a lovely leather halter from Horze. I myself am a big fan of Horze and enjoy shopping both online and in person (at the Rolex this year they had a great shop set up), and I LOVE this halter. I’m a bit obsessive about leather halters though. They just look so good and I haven’t bought one for O yet!

The reason that I think O deserves it is because after months of battling issues with O breaking “out” of her halter when tied (see story here), she has decided that his is indeed a bad idea, and now stands nicely for her people. Since I feel that I can now trust her with a shiny new halter I’ve been scouring websites and tack stores for the best one for the best price. So this is perfect timing for her reward for being so good!

Enter here for your chance to win!

Trying to stay positive

After our disaster lesson on Friday, O got saturday off, and I went to check on her Sunday. She looked happy enough, munching hay and rubbing a HUGE section of her lovely black mane off. Just great-she looks ridiculous. Urgh.

Once I got over the loss of her pretty hair, I let her loose in the indoor to see how she was moving. After the inital trot steps I didn’t even have the heart to push her much more. She was very lame still, seemlingly in her lower back right hind. She didn’t want to move, let alone trot, so it can’t be feeling very good. Poor baby. She got some loves, and the day off yesterday too. Making today’s vet visit (later on) very ominous to me.

Here are the things I am currently stressing about:

1. Maybe I broke her. (I know this isn’t really true-but doesn’t every owner think that when their baby is hurt?)
2. Maybe this kind of work is just too much for her.
3. Does she need another injection? This soon? And on my 7 year old?
3a. Can I really mentally handle injecting her all the time like this to keep her in work?
4. Absess? Maybe?

I’m really lucky to have a trainer who is as crazy about her horses as she is her riders (probably more so really), and who is a huge fan of O. She will be there to make sure we get all the answers I need and questions asked. Definitely feeling a bit nervous!

There’s no crying in…horseback riding?

This post has taken me a few days to figure out how to write. Friday was one of those startling horrible days for O and I. I went out with high hopes…it was the day before our first little show together, and while she had only been sore and bit off on Wednesday so I wasn’t too worried. I even took the day off (birthday present to myself) to relax, ride, lay by the pool, shop whatever. I tacked up, hopped on, walked around-everything seemed fine. O and I spent some time examining the scary horse eating red tent by the ring, and then we were off for schooling. Both trainers were in the ring discussing random show details when we started trotting. I maybe made it 10 feet before they were both yelling for me to stop her. Not that I wasn’t trying to already-I could feel it…she was so, so incredibly lame. I stop, trainers hurry over looking over all my equipment, at her feet, legs, body. There was nothing, no heat, no swelling, no apparent injury. We tried again with no bump pad (hoping for a ouchie back) and got nothing, then I hopped on bareback, got nothing. So not a back issue most likely. Both trainers thought it was actually a back right hind lameness. Which is where, I believe, that my heart fell through my stomach.

I didn’t have this blog going at the time, but after my honeymoon in March, O went for about 7 weeks (maybe a bit more?) off work with a mystery lameness. We tried everything, including nerve blocking to find out what was wrong with her. All we knew is that it was in her lower right hind. And we couldn’t seem to fix it. My new husband was about beside himself with all these lovely vet bills rolling in. I went to battle constantly to keep O, and that we would find a way to make her better again. Eventually we took an educated guess and injected her pastern. 4 days later she was sound in back. Shortly after that she came up lame in front. It sucked. But we had fixed the right hind issue for the time being. And now I feel like it’s rearing it’s ugly, nasty head again.

The vet is coming, actually a new vet is coming, out Tuesday to do a full eval on her. It wouldn’t be such a big deal, if it wasn’t how my trainer acted after seeing her trot today. She actually sat down on a jump and told me that we need to start thinking about a plan here, and asking the hard questions. She openly admitting she doesn’t know why O is constantly off, and is out of ideas to fix her for me. My trainer, who just loves O, has been a huge advocate of her through everything. To hear her so doubtful of what is going on was pretty much horrifying. Even my secondary trainer looked depressed, especially after we talked through O’s recent history. I’ve had her for 9 months, and she’s been sound for roughly 4 (I’m being generous). Not to mention the 3 abscesses since this winter. To the people who are reading this and are mentally saying “Oh my god, what does this lady to do her horse!?” Please just realize that O gets wonderful care where she lives, and of course, I just love her. It breaks my heart that we can’t find a way to keep her sound.

So now that I’ve just written this insanely long post about my personal pony pity party…I don’t know what to do with myself until Tuesday. If anyone has any ideas I’d welcome them. I’m guessing I’ll be obsessively researching, guessing, and hoping its something small and silly. But after months of battling these supposed silly issues, I feel as I’d I’m all out of luck.

Cursed!

Earlier this week I had no less than 3 people comment on how sound and happy O looks lately. Each and every time I responded, while secretly scrambling to find something wooden to passionately knock on. It’s the week of the last schooling show for our stable. C’mon people don’t curse us!

Well I must’ve knocked on sheet rock or something instead of wood because as seen in our lesson yesterday O was back off again. My trainer actually peeled off all of her bell boots and such off of O’s legs hoping there was a rub or something since the “off-ness” was really inconsistent. With boots off she trotted out perfect! I was so relieved! And also a bit annoyed-what a goober. Lesson went on, and came to a messy stop after we cantered to the left. Yup, she was off again. Very minor, my trainer said, but enough to stop us from jumping. She decided to school her Friday before the Saturday show and hope it was just her being high maintenance.

I ended up being very frustrated at the end of the ride, mainly because it wasn’t great for me or O and since she was sore it made the situation much, much worse. I kind of trudged around the barn moping after, frustrated that I can never keep this pony sound, blah blah blah the usual pity party. Solution? Had a drink and watched baseball!

Fingers crossed that it was something simple (I.e. her royal highness was unhappy after stomping her own flies that day) and she’ll get to feeling better soon.

I know there is plenty of other shows, it’s just hard to keeping having such bad luck! Horse show weeks may just be cursed for us!

Demon O.

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Are We Done Yet?

O is a smart little mare, and like many horses she has come to recognize the standard ride. Walk, Trot, Canter, both directions. And for a long time, especially when we were trying to get her back in shape (multiple times) that was the law. So hence, my smartie pants pony has decided that once we’ve cantered both directions she is checking out.

Now that we are adding things like quick changes, to our workout she’s got to realize that she’s done when we finish our WHOLE workout. Yesterday’s ride wasn’t as bad as others, but if she shut down and went into sleepy-checked-out-horse mode, she got to work more. More cantering, more collection, more upward and downward transitions, whatever I could think of to make her focus on her work continuing. In the end, after much leg and circles, she gave me a lot of great effort, and instead of constantly asking “Are we done yet?” I feel like she was willing to keep the momentum until I thought we had truely wrapped up this lesson. Also, she was doing her “cute trot” at the end, which I loved. People around the barn called it her swagger trot, and it feels like we are finally getting it back (after months of on and off soreness). Yay us!

This is the schooling show week, which means any day she is due to tear off a shoe, or two (as per the last 2 horse shows). Fingers crossed that good luck is with us, and she keep them all on and sound until Saturday!

Getting her graze on post workout.

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Gorgeous evening!

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Apparently the best grass is mostly under my chair. Goober.

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Finally Friday at Five

This was a very long, mentally exhuasting week for me. And nothing felt better than heading out at 5pm. I’m so blessed to have a fabulous job, but my brain was about out of juice at this point. So at 5pm I turned off the computer, packed my goodies and was gone! My asthma has been a royal pain in the butt this week, but I knew that I would regret not riding today–even if I was a little short winded. The stable was very quiet and it was nice to just relax and lavish some extra love on my pony.

Under saddle she was very agreeable, although a little too quiet at first. After some serious legging as a wake-up call, O got the point and really used her rather large booty to our advantage, rather than drag herself around the ring with her front end. I could tell though, that I’ve been working on the canter extensively, and her trot wasn’t as collected and put together as I like to see it. Meh. Note to self to not get too stuck on the canter, that we would forget our other lessons.

Once we had a really nice, forward, uphill canter going O and I threw in a few quick changes/trot changes into our agenda. As I had noticed in our lessons, she struggles much more going from the left to the right. Her right to left is really nice, and when we are going over fences she usually trys to switch that one out on her own. But we still have a very LONG way to go. I know that staying back and getting her balanced is key-but easier said than done I fear. However, it was overall a very good ride. πŸ™‚

"What is this?  Hold on I must taste this."

“What is this? Hold on I must taste this.”

Pony got her mane shampooed (she allllllways gets things in it) and I’m afraid I got a bit carried away with the soap. She wasn’t humored by my laughing or taking pictures either. She was ready to get her dinner on. I still enjoyed myself! ha!

Bathtime!

Bathtime!

Horsey mohawk!

Horsey mohawk!

Sun Up

I have totally fallen in love with my early morning rides! And since most kids are back in school now, I had the whole place to myself yesterday. Even O was perky and ambled happily around the ring! We worked on my equitation, focusing on me staying out of her face.

She was a total sweetheart and responded well to my leg, I kind of pinched myself while we cooled out…she has been so excellent lately! I do attest most of this to the fact that I think her toes feel much better in her new shoes. Thank god for farriers!

Funny note for the day-
I actually forgot to bring a hairbrush to work this morning, and had to go shopping at 7am on my way into work to shower and get ready. Once I got clean, dressed and brushed my hair (with new hairbrush) I made an even worse realization. I didn’t had work shoes. I had riding boots, I had rainbow rain boots, I had flip flops, I had running shoes, but nothing that really went with my black pencil skirt.

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Luckily after making it to my desk (in the flip flops) I stumbled upon some random flats I had there! Woot! They even kind of matched! Another day saved by my messy workspace.