First, allow me to start with a picture. Because I love it.
Hubs and horsebeast in action.
O has now been at the ranch for about 3 weeks. She’s been out and about over the land on rides, seen cattle, massive equipment (it’s hay season!) and had my nephews ride their bicycles all up in her bubble. I hit a rather awkward stage at the moment….and so basically none of my clothes fit, so I was in shorts when I was down there. The hubs rode horsebeastie for me.
1st fun tidbit: She can now be tacked up in ‘her spot’. Each ranch pony has a stall that they belong to. Not only does she go to that spot and wait, but does it without prodding. It’s kind of adorable.
2nd fun tidbit: My in-laws love her. They say she’s lovely to be around, and just a nice ride overall.
3rd funny tidbit: She’s the very bottom of the horsey totem pole. Only friend she has is this little shetland guy.
I love him.
As for the ride, we scraped as much of the mud off of her as possible (someone has been rolling extensively) and then tossed a saddle on the mare. Off we went to their arena area, which was new for her.
Off she goes!
She walked. She trotted. She cantered. She never put a foot wrong, even while crossing water to get to the arena. Oh and during all of this my Farrier-in-Law was dragging the arena for us with his tractor, and my bro-in-law plus nephews were tossing haybales at O so she could jump them if the mood struck.
SHE DIDN’T LOOK AT ANYTHING.
Good mares don’t care.
In fact the only time she even got remotely sassy was when my husband decided to play flying changes. The first was silky smooth, the second was spicy but successful. Both her good direction, but still. She just loped around like it was no biggie.
Just toodling along.
Then the hubs wanted to tempt fate. Let’s just see what she does with the bales, he says, as he trots her at the hay. Mentally I’m thinking 2 options in play here. She’s going to stop. Or, she’s going to rocket launch.
Well, she went with rocket launch. Once we laughed that off, he circled her back and popped her over it a few more times.
Learning no rocket launching is necessary for hay bales.
Loping over them at this point.
She stared it down once or twice, sure, but never even thought about stopping. In fact, she gave this face (look below), and started to take him there. He actually laughed, and asked who was really teaching who here.
Mare sees jump.
Mare goes to jump! (her ears are forward, and she was locked on)
Mare doesn’t bother actually jumping the jump. She got wayyy close to the bale on this one.
I was bursting with pride at all of this. My husband has never really purposefully ridden to a jump of any kind, and my pony actually stepped up and acted like the horse who knew her job. I feel validated in that this was what she needed, a true shake up of her daily life. And while I miss her so much at home, I don’t know how many times we’ll have this opportunity. I want to be sure we get everything out of it.
Hiding in the barn while her Mule overlord waits outside.
Just over 3 weeks down, and we are looking at roughly 8 more depending on how she’s doing. Hopes are high!