Tuesday 10 April 2018

Tie One On

Because of cold weather and having to be social over Easter and my birthday it's been almost 2 weeks since I rode last.  The weather is finally on the upswing - by which I mean a few degrees above freezing, let's not get too excited here - so I'm hoping to get the kids going again.
There's still a wee bit of snow on the ground. (Saturday on my way out to the barn)
I know that after Phantom gets her vaccinations next week she will need 7-10 days off. Princesses are sensitive and get big lumps after jabs. So I want to concentrate on her a bit this week.

Monday night I scraped another pillow's worth of hair from the polar pony. Now that she's decided to start shedding she apparently wants to lose it as soon as possible. Still so much to come off.
How I spent my Saturday night. Scraping hair off of horses. 
I tacked her up and hopped on. Since she hadn't been ridden for a couple of weeks I decided to drop the intervals that we are doing back down to the 3 minutes instead of the 4 minutes that we had done at our last ride. Sort of to break her back into work again, and also to end the ride earlier in the hope that I would be able to take Cisco for a spin.

Despite Phantom having had a good play in the arena on Saturday night with lots of zoomies, she was quite full of herself. Not in a bad way - mostly a very happy to go forward way. She felt good though. This was also only the second time I had ridden her since she got that hematoma on her butt, so I was a bit worried about her feeling a bit off, but it wasn't a concern. 

She was looking for an excuse to canter and once she cantered I knew the remainder of the ride would be a gong show. (No walking. Only canter.) I didn't have any expectations for this ride other than trying not to hang on her mouth and give her an excuse to get short and tight. 
Here's a pic of her hematoma.
My plan at a canter was to do a huge figure 8 on the one lead (thus counter canter through half of it) and then deal with the overly silly trot that would follow, before taking a break and doing the same on the other lead. 

We started on the left lead quite nicely, which shifted to thinking about scooting, then relaxed again, before joyfully swapping the lead in front. Back to walk like 20 strides later than planned, and we picked up the left lead to finish the figure 8. And yes, a very silly trot to deal with. 

We did a couple of half-circle reverses (quick changes of bend usually helps to set her back a bit), and then I said screw it, threw the reins at her and used my body to slow her down. I closed my thighs and sat heavier and she slowed herself down. Right down. Like super slow poky trot. And wouldn't really pick the pace up again. Ruh roh. Bells and sirens start screaming in my brain.
I'll get the vet to have a peek at it next week when she gets jabbed.
Back to walk and she stretched her head down to the ground. Fack. She's thinking of tying up again. (Not that she consciously thinks about it, it's her bodies reaction to whatever causes it and she likely has no control over it.)

I immediately hopped off and led her over to the barn. She was walking quite forward, but I wasn't taking any chances. Pony Grandma was with me so she took over walking duties while I loaded up a syringe of bute. We continued to walk her up and down the barn aisle. For an hour.

This wasn't a full out not wanting to move tying up episode. More of a somewhat stiff behind but still good to walk episode. She was happy to walk, so we kept her walking. In my experience with her if she stands still she stiffens up. If I asked her to back up she kind of dragged her toes and didn't take very big steps behind. 

After an hour, most of which was walked by Pony Grandma, Phantom was walking pretty good. Tracking up for the most part. She hadn't made any noises about stopping for that hour (except to give me a major mare glare when Pony Grandma was turning her back down the aisle for yet another lap) so I turned her back out. She's not a happy camper in a stall, and the more she moves around the better. 

Why did it happen this time? I had only been out to the barn 2 or 3 times over the last two weeks, so that would have been the only times she got her chaste tree berries. There was a relatively quick change in weather. She had too much silly energy to expend (not that she really did). It was a Monday. Who knows.

I guess for the next couple of rides I'll keep it super easy and see what happens.


  1. I'm glad that you had a good ride before things started to go a little south. Good thing that you were able to head it off!

    1. Not a good feeling to have such a good ride ended so quickly.

  2. We had one horse in our barn that used to tie up, scary stuff :(