Thursday, 22 November 2018

What's Up? Not Much.

It's that time of year when I don't get out to the barn too much. I'm working six days a week with shifts all over the place. If I have an evening off I'm likely to fall asleep on the couch for a couple of hours. I try to make it out to the barn at least once a week to make sure there aren't any lumps or bumps that I have to worry about and change blankets if needed. I've learned not to get too excited about not riding - the horses are always there and waiting for my return to the saddle.

When I do make it out to the barn I usually try to let them loose in the arena to get some sillies out. We've been going through a bunch of warm/cold cycles and the ground is quite icy at the moment. I don't think they're moving around too much in their paddocks.

Today I brought Phantom in, slapped some bell boots on her, and took her over to the arena. She had a roll (on one side of her body) and played with a barrel in the arena.
She was quite proud of herself for knocking the barrel over and kicking it - she was sure it was going to result in a cookie. Too bad I didn't have any.
Eventually, I shushed her a bit with the whip to get moving. And move she did.

Full gallop. Stop in the corner. Walk a few steps. Full gallop again.

Yeah, someone had way too much energy. There was a reason I wasn't riding her.

She could only walk and gallop today. No trot. Just zoom.
Who'd of thunk a barrel would be this entertaining?
I had to end her session earlier than I would have liked. I'm always worried that she'll tie up when she gets this excited  - it's happened before. So she barely had a chance to get the edge off before I walked her out.

Cisco hasn't figured out the whole play when loose in the arena thing. Well, the version where you use the whole arena instead of just going back and forth along the short side by the gate. So I hooked him up a lunge line and we headed on down to the scary end.

He's still looky at that end, but we don't have the same problem that we did a year ago when he would just stop and try to spin away. He barely even drops his shoulder to the inside anymore. But he's always on alert for potential hazards at that end of the arena.
Intently looking for something that's going to murder him.
Today he was feeling sassy, so he was full periscope up and looking for a reason to spook. Which he found - a couple of times as he passed the fence line the pigeons flew up from right next to him. He used that as an excuse to spook a bit and kind of snake his neck, but considering his sass level his reaction was pretty minor. And again - last year he wouldn't have gone past that area after the birds came out of nowhere. Today, no issue. So that's at least some progress that we've made in the last year.

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