Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Saturday Wonders

Saturday was a lovely day here in Virginia- the sky was blue and filled with happy, fluffy clouds, the temperature was in the low 90’s and the humidity was low- a beautiful day for riding! When I first brought Buckshot into the arena, he was moving slowly, he had low energy. But that is fine for our warm up, and we got through it fine. Then we started trotting patterns and his energy rose. We did some very nice cantering as well. Soon three other horses and riders joined us in the arena, and we all warmed up. We went through the woods to the reining arena in a nearby field.

At the larger, reining arena, Buckshot and I did great work. We worked on cantering at the turns. At we approached a turn, I kept my inside leg strongly pressed against him, and he maintained the canter during the turn. It was great! I did it at both leads and worked well. Perhaps it gives him a bit of support in turning at the canter that I hadn’t realized before and so hadn’t done. The idea of supporting the horse during a maneuver is still new and unfamiliar to me. I guess I instinctively think that the horse can handle all of the turns, moves and actions asked of them. But when one instructor many years ago, instructed me to give the horse support while circling him at the trot, I first heard of this concept. What is your understanding of giving the horse support while riding?
In all, Saturday’s ride, in slightly cooler weather, was super. We rode for two hours. I was very proud of Buckshot!

Sunday was very rainy, and when there appeared to be a break in the rain, I got Buckshot and we rode for a short twenty minutes, but it was a good ride. We stayed at the walk, as it was our warm up time, but we did several new patterns at the walk, working on precision. He had good energy at the walk, and was very responsive to the patterns. At exactly twenty minutes, it started to rain big fat raindrops, so I dismounted and told him what good work he had done! Then I took him to the barn to untack and get treats.

I used the extra time on Sunday to do some of the things I don't like to do. I cleaned Buckshot's tack really well. I used toothpaste and a toothbrush to clean and shine his bit. I even cleaned the Chicago screws on his bit and coated them with clear polish. I am trying to get the hardware clean on his saddle and bridle as some spots have gotten a bit tarnished or rusted. What do you do to keep the hardware shiny? I wish I had gotten different hardware, but when I bought this headstall (or bridle) I didn't appreciate the different types of hardware. For some reason, I now want the hardware to look really nice and shiny. But there are bits of rust on it. Darn. Any suggestions?

Buckshot’s small bout of scratches on one pastern has finally cleared up. His front hooves are still a little split, however. The BO checks him several times during the week and I check him on the weekend. We occasionally treat it with thrush medication, as a preventative. They are healing, but very, very slowly. But overall, he is doing very well, and the new probiotic he is on is working great. Whenever he poops around me, I find myself looking at it carefully and pronouncing it- great poop! Only the owner of an older horse can perhaps understand! LOL!

Hope you had a good weekend with your special horse!

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