Tuesday, December 9, 2008

FUZZIES!


So I finally got myself out to visit Tuff yesterday! And I ALMOST didn't recognize him! He is a HAIR BALL! I seriously had to do a double take and think this IS my horse, right?? Look at that face!! His ears are so cute/funny looking. They are so fuzzy that they kind of disappear into his head. I had to let his halter down a hole JUST because of his fuzziness, lol. He's also darker then when I saw him last.

So, I've been sort of worried since it's gotten quite cold lately (20-30's) that he might not be warm enough, etc. I DON'T WORRY ANYMORE! ;) I'm glad he grows a good coat. His buddy Skip is just as fuzzy. And they are such good friends I'm sure if they did get a little chilly they would huddle together.

Anywho, I didn't really do anything but visit with him and check him over. Also gave him some wormer and checked his height. He is about 13.1. !!! He is nearing 2 years old and still not even close to 14 hands! Argh. Oh well, he does have about 5 months to do some shooting up, hehe. I do think I won't be riding him until next fall though. I might sit on him a few times, but that will probably be it. And even in the fall just easy walking mostly. Theres really no rush, of course. Need a round pen!! Anyone want to give me one for Christmas?? PUHLEASE??? :batting eyes:

So he was very sweet and seemed happy to follow me all about the pasture, lol. I'm sure they are quite bored, we've shut them off from the main pasture to save it for spring. They still have a good bit to roam, but not able to graze like they used to. We keep hay out there a lot though. But, then I got an idea. I've seen lots of videos and heard stories about horses that loved playing with big balls. So I jumped on the little bro in laws 4wheeler and fetched my exercise ball that NEVER gets used (do any of them??). I was all ready with my camera expecting them to all be running about like loons.

WELL! Far from the case. They were quite boring really. Sugar pushed it around a bit, as did Tuff, but they really weren't that interested in it. Takes care of that idea! Maybe they will warm up to it though, lol. Tuff was a little spooked by it whenever someone (or some horse) would push it at him, haha. Here's a short vid:

Tuff and the Exercise Ball!!

Anywho, it was fun to just visit and watch them. We gave them some hay and they settled down very happily with that. Here's a few pics for your enjoyment, hope everyone is doing well!!




Monday, November 3, 2008

Trailer Loading Prelims!

Isn't he GORGEOUS!?---->


Saturday morning I went out and played with Tuff Tuff for awhile. Lee only has one day a week to sleep in, which is saturday, and sleeps till about 10. And I usually wake up at the time I have go to work, around 8. SO! I get so bored waiting on him. That morning I got dressed, left him a note, and Bowser and I bicycled (well I did, he didn't haha) out to the pasture. I finally got him a new halter and wanted to see how it fit. I got there at the PERFECT time. They had all just come up for water and were about to head back out, so I started calling him and he came up to the gate to see me. :)

Put his halter on and voila! It fit! I was kinda worried it might be too big, he has such a dainty head. But it did, up on the highest settings, haha. But at least he's in a full size horse halter now! Its a pretty leather one just like his mommies, although her is a few years old and is getting kinda nappy!

So I got him out of the gate without the other two following, always a good thing, and went up to the shed to get a lead rope and brush. Which was a little nerve wracking, seeing as I had to walk him right up to the door and let go of him for a few seconds to get each, but all went well and he didn't wander off!
Getting to the shed, we had to go through a skinny place between a bunch of 'junk' that Lee's father has in his yard, about wither high to him and there was about, oh, maybe a foot of clearance on each side of his body, and he didn't really think it was such a good idea to walk through there at first! Lol, but I reassured him and he said, okay mom if you say so! And went on through it, such a good boy.

I walked him over to the tree to tie him up (yes the same tree he broke his halter on, lol, though he was very well behaved this time) and by this time the other two horses had decided to leave him and I was a little worried he would act up like he did the last time. But I neednt have! He was a perfect gentleman. I brushed him a bit and took a few pictures. (you'll see lots of his cute little face this post) And then untied him to do a little in hand work.

I found some old boards for us to step over, and he did so good! I put three in a row and even though they were really flat and close to the ground he was careful with them and after a few tries he didn't touch a one! Then we did some trotting over them, and first time through he was clear, I was impressed, we've never done that before. But you would think we had been practicing it forever. I want to lunge him over some soon. I'll get vid! How cute will he look?? I can't wait to ride his cute little trot. GROW, GROW TUFF TUFF!!

Anyway, after that we walked around the whole yard looking for the pieces of plywood that had been taken of his 'foaling stall'. I wanted to start practicing walking on odd things, thus you see the reason for my title, to help him be more comfortable loading in the trailer. Speaking of, the little two horse Lee's dad bought and is redoing is coming along. We went over to see it and he had a sniff and chew, lol, and he had the funniest expression when we looked in the back, he was like, woah, whats in there? Kinda like last post looking in the truck windows. But he wasn't scared of it and didn't have a problem walking up to it. Good signs! I really like this method of trailer loading, it makes a lot of sense!

Anyway, couldn't find the plywood! (found out later they were in the old horse trailer, the other one, lol) And at that time we saw Lee coming up! He had finally woken up and came to find me. I handed Tuff to him so I could do a more thorough search for the plywood and told him what I had been doing, so then he wanted to do it with him, it was cute. He walked him over the wood and made him back up, etc. They did good together.

So I finally found something to use for stepping on practice, lol, although it was a bit smaller then
I wanted. I let Lee take him over first, I want him to feel like he's invovled. And he mostly just stepped over it, lol.

That pic to the left makes him look like he jumped it! LOL, I promise he didn't! I guess its just one of those awkward moments, its such a funny pic though. At times he did get stuck under that 'lip' where it didn't lay flat to the ground, that may have been what was going on.

So they did that a few times, and then I took him and I made him go really slow over it, a step at a time, so he couldn't avoid it.

At first he wanted to paw the heck out of it, which was fine with me, that means he was interested and testing it out. He was totally calm and cool about the whole thing and then walked right over it. We did it a few times and he was great. He tried to step to the side a few times, as you can see here, but I just pushed him back over and he was like okay.

So after that I did some work on his flexing to either side, something I haven't done in awhile. He did so good. I even did it from one side, not switching to either side of his body, so it was pulled across his back, he had no prob with it. I also usually clip the lead rope to each side of his halter, but I left it on the ring underneath his chin, again, no prob! Yeah! He was really reaching too, almost touching his belly! I was impressed to say the least. He is still better to the left so need more right work.
So! Lee videoed us when I first started him over the board, you'll see his pawing haha, its funny. Lee keeps asking me if its recording, no idea what he's talking about 'flashing' lol, so I'm like I have no idea! So just ignore us! Also, you might get a bit dizzy, Lee can't seem to hold his hand still, gah. Hey, I also just noticed at 56 seconds we do a pretty nice little bitty pivot, hehe.

(why do videos look so icky after uploading???)



And now I will leave you with the prettiest picture! Its my wallpaper at present, lol. Although I love the first one too. Hm, this one down here might be frame worthy! Too bad the top one has my sis in laws piece of junk rotting car in the background -_-.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tuffs First Trim!


Tuff Tuff says, "what's in there??"

So I was kinda nervous. Yes, I have been picking his feet up since he was a baby, and he does good. But its a whole different ball game when its the farrier, a stranger, and they are rasping and cutting etc, on the hooves and not just holding them.

Anyway, we decided to do it out in the pasture, since all 5 horses needed doing. He drove in on Daisy and Rusty's side, and we did them first. This was two days after we had rode them, and apparently she was still in one of her moods because as soon as I walked toward her she took off trotting away from me!! Oooooo, I was livid. Stinkin mare. So for some reason Rusty was still there (I think he was going to the bathroom) so I grabbed him and he did him first. This guy is FAST, I mean he trimmed all four did front shoes and it took him maybe 10 mins? Crazy. He does this for a living tho, like 70 horses a week he said. Still, I like to see one take his time and check angles and such, I don't think does anything with them. But I could be wrong. After Rusty the little BIL was able to get Daisy and he got her trimmed up, unfortunately she only acted up a little once, haha, so I only got to smack her with the lead rope that one time. (yes, I hold a grudge!)

Once they were done there he drove over to the dividing fence where the colts and Sugar are. (by the way they all get along quite well, she say stay out of my way, and they listen! But she doesn't chase them) Lee was already there attempting to put Tuff's oh so pretty red white and blue halter on, and was trying to keep the head piece buckled, lol. Why, I have no idea, so I said you have to undo it! He goes I KNOW, man, try to tell a man something and yikes. Anyway, he was the first caught, so the first done! I was so nervous, lol, I wanted him to be so good! I'm silly, I know.

The farrier got out of his truck and goes, "now thats a pretty colt!" I beamed! Don't we all love getting compliments on our horses! And he hadn't, and didn't, say a word about any of the other 4.

Anywho, he did good, not great. He wanted to pull back a few times and get his foot back (fronts, he's always had a bit of trouble with balance) But Lee was holding him and was able to keep him still enough. Although the whole time you could see tension in his neck and his head cocked sideways lol, usually a foot stuck out at an odd angle trying to stay up! Poor guy. The farrier was really nice though, saying he was just a baby, its just baby stuff. :) He's right. Lee thought he did a good job, so I'm happy I guess. Need to work on acting like I'm rasping etc on his foot though, and holding it between my knees more. As you can see here --> no prob with the back feet, hehe.

Now as for his buddy, Skip, who was next. He made me feel even better about Tuff, haha. At first he wanted NOTHING to do with that farrier. He is kinda skittish around strangers. And started yanking and running backwards. The older BIL had a hold of him, and later Lee said he thought Skip wouldn't have gotten so far if his bro could have held him. He's not go the muscles my man does, hehe. (or the fine behind!! sorry ;)

This pic here is so cute, Lee held on to him while the other horses were being done and he just stood there and relaxed, so cute. Ugh, that halter!

Anyway, after that Skip was just fine, no probs. Of course his owner wasn't there, and didn't believe us that he threw a fit at first. I ALMOST got it on camera, seconds too late. Boo! Hehe.

After Skip was done, we let the colts go and they wandered around eating while Sugar was being done. At one point Tuff got very curious about the farriers truck and kept trying to see in his windows and through the back door, it was hilarious! I've never seen a horse maneuver around and just stare into a vehicle like that, so funny. Thats what he is doing in the very first picture.

And here is a comparison of Tuff and Skips hooves, Skip has quite a bit smaller one:
I will leave you with the cutest head shot I have of Tuff yet! He looks so different 'naked' lol. I will also leave you with a small video of him getting his back foot done.


Hope all is well with everyone, have a good week!



Tuffs First Hoof Trim! from Britnieann on Vimeo.

Bad Daisy, Good Tuff Tuff

So had a pretty 'horsey' weekend. Saturday the two BIL's decided to ride horses, so I get a call from one of them asking if they can ride Daisy. I'm like sure. We were in town doin our saturday 'couple time'. We usually browse the flea markets or go to a 'fun store', ie, somewhere we want to buy something for ourselves. This week we went around the outdoor stores looking at bows. (as in bow and arrow, lol) I had decided I wanted one for my birthday (which was Sunday) and then we went to a place we have around here that has biking trails (SCARY ONES) and lots of hiking trails with creeks and neat rock formations. We've never been and it was cool and cloudy so good time for doing it! Had a LOT of fun, felt like we were dating again :).

Anyway, its been a week since I wrote that up top, so its going to be a challenge to remember anything clearly now! Just never got time to get this typed up.

So we went on home soon after they called, me being the worrier, I wanted to make sure they took care of my horse, and SHE took care of THEM. I also wanted to see yella mare rode. They had just gotten them out of the pasture when I got there, and soon had each saddled up. Although there was a bit of a hitch with Sugar. She has been rode in a tie down, due to her annoying head tossing, so the older BIL bought one for her. But he's never bought one before, and didn't really know what to get. All he bought was the leather piece that connects from the girth to the noseband, but no noseband. So after a while they finally decided to put her halter back on and clip it to the lead rope ring, it worked! Although not pretty, lol. She hit that a couple times and quit throwing her head as much.

So Daisy was okay, pretty good for the first part of the ride, although there was plenty of this junk going on. (see picture at right, not wanting to listen to the bit, swishing tail, etc.) I was trying to explain again how to neck rein her, although she doesn't do it well, you can still ride her in a manner that teaches it. Well it wasn't going well so I just thought he wasn't doing so good at getting through to her. Hah, little did I know.






At times she was just fine, as you see here, but do you know why?? She was doing what she wanted! STANDING STILL. Ey yi yi.

Anyway older BIL finally mounted up (little BIL was riding around by himself for a bit waiting on him, and I was so proud about how she was doing, at that point!) and we made sure to keep each mare far away from each other, lol. So Jesse went off in front and Sugar followed (not much on the way of steering with her as it turns out) and that worked well.
Sugar did pretty good, she would sometimes get stuck in a circle though, and not go where you wanted. Like I said, not much in the way of steering. (and they are riding her in a tom thumb, sigh)

After a bit they decided to put the bitless bridle on her, I brought it over for just that use. I'm sure the poor mare has some kind of teeth or something or other problem. Well she was pretty dull to it at first, and still tossed her head, so we snapped the tie down back on, and she did pretty well with it after that. I rode her a bit and she was really getting the hang of the turning cues. You just have to treat her like a green (or unbroke!) horse and be very slow and
clear about it all.

So after about, oh, 15-20 mins? She started getting noticeably ouchy on her front foot, one of them, or both? Dunno, didn't pay a whole lot of attention to that part of it. She is a good girl though, and didn't get pissy or annoyed, just kept plugging along. She even trotted when asked, although that was only done once after we saw how lame she was. I dunno if some kind of joint supplement for arthritis would help or what?

Anyway, back to Daisy. About the time Sugar started getting ouchy, Daisy started being a major PIA. She even started trying to get broncy!! I've got it on video, the little BIL was walking her down the hill and she puts her head down and starts prancing a bit just as if shes saying "you better watch it! I just might do it!!" Now, she was probably all talk and no show (so lazy) but it really made me mad. She finds t just too much work to slow her big fat body down when going down a hill, so she decided to show how much she disliked it. She did it again when the big BIL was riding her, when he asked her to trot. GRRRR. She never did buck, just such a PIA.

I got on her in between their rides, and she did no such thing to me, but I think she knows she had better not. Or I'm kidding myself and she just decided not to, lol. But she WAS a pain, not even THINKING about trying to listen to my neck rein, I was basically dragging her around all over. She wasn't listening to leg cues, nothin. Was really ticking me off. All she wanted to do was stand still up near the house. And if that wasnt what she was doing, she was just a major PIA. Yes, my fav abbreviation for her right now! lol

So anyway, I had to get off her at one point to help them put the bitless bridle on Sugar (its a bit of a puzzle at first) and then never got back on her as the big BIL had commandeered her, or I might have gotten her straightened out, doubtful, but who knows. I think it was just one of her 'mare' days. UGH! She is notoriously a major hiney in heat. Every one of her previous owners has said so, lol. What a pain. Hope to never see one of those moods again, or at least not for awhile!

So anywho, no one fell off or got hurt, but it just annoyed me that she wasn't her typical 'put anyone on her and go' horse, I was really worried about the little BIL riding her, as he doesn't really know what to do when a horse acts up. Like when she put her head down to bronc, he just sat there. Sigh. We were yelling PULL HER HEAD UP! haha.

So anywho! To the good Tuff Tuff part! He did so good for his first trimming. I think I'll put that in the next post, this one is getting kinda long! Till then!

<~~ The little BIL really looks kind of ridiculous on Sugar, she is MAYBE 15 hands and he is like 6'3 or taller, haha.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

A Tuff Story and a New Mare

<-- Tuff gettin his dinner in early Sept.

So I decided to blog since its been forever! Even though I really don't have much to say. Did have an interesting day with Tuff the other day though. Not really interesting in a good way either.

So Rusty, the BIL's gelding sliced open his foot just above his hoof the other day, and the FIL had him out doctoring him. So I decided to call Tuff up and feed him, then get him out to play a bit. Also, HE got cut up the other day and I wanted to assess the damage. (apparently he got out of his pasture and into Daisy and Rustys SOMEHOW! I wish we had a camera out there! The bottom wire on the fence was loose. Did he roll under it?? The cuts are all on his belly and neck. So weird. The FIL found him running he** bent for leather with his mommy hot on his butt, TERRIFIED! She is so evil to him!)

Anway, got him out and fed him, then walked him over to a tree I usually tie him at. Well he was definitely not in the tying mood. Rusty was hollering for Daisy, and every time he did, Tuff would. Then the new mare (more about her later) would holler, etc. And it was windy and a little cool, all of you know what that does to a horses temperament, lol.

So I brushed him for awhile, brushed his tail out, that takes awhile, its so thick and long. He was standing okay, not relaxed, and a little antsy, but okay. Then I walked off from him and he would wiggled and turn and kept trying to wrap himself around the tree. *SIGH* The tree I had him tied to was not a great place, but all that I had. The FIL had Rusty at the other tying spot and I didn't want to get close to him. SO, everytime he wrapped himself up (yes, I had him tied short enough, the tree was just too skinny so he could walk around it. EDIT: Actually, looking through my old posts, its the the same one he's tied to on June 26th Yearling Fuglies)

I would walk over and put him back in place and step back again. He also tried rearing up at the tree a few times to see if it would let him loose, lol. (something he did when we first started tieing him as a foal) And of course he did the ever popular pawing routine, but I would throw a pine cone at him if he did that (usually missing him completely).

Well one time he wrapped himself up and I didn't move fast enough and he snugged himself up so tight to the tree he got upset and tugged a bit and SNAP, there went the thin leather crown piece (actually the hole where it adusts stretched and broke) and he was free free free! *SIGH*

So I didn't panic! I just walked calmly after him (he trotted over to the fence. His buddy Skip and the new mare had left him earlier, causing him to be even more worried, and he wanted in there to find them!) and started rattling his feed bucket, thankfully still where I had left it, and calling him like I do when I call him up to feed him. He came over to me in just a few moments and I got the lead rope around his neck and put the halter back on as best I could. PHEW! So I drug him over to the shed and miraculously found a halter in there that fit him (he has such a little head) and I took him over to the tree Rusty was at (at some point in time after he got lose the FIL had walked him back out to the pasture). So I tied him up there, but my knot kept coming undone -_-.

Finally the FIL got back and he did a better knot for me and I just sat in the grass and watched him. He wiggled around some more, pawed, hollered, and acted like a little brat, but eventually he started to stop and put his head down, cock a leg, for a few moments, and then wiggle again. Finally he did it for a good few minutes so I got up and untied him and we walked around a bit working on leading skills etc, then I put him back up. At this time he was MUCH calmer, acting like a good boy, and I was pleased. It was funny, but every time the knot I did came loose, and I went over to retie it, he would be still and act happy that I was there, lol, he was lonely. But he needed to learn a lesson!

When we got to the gate Skip was there waiting for him :). Tuff touched noses with him for a while and you could tell how happy he was, lol.

SO, not a great outing, but ended well. I am glad he never sat back and pulled. He will go to the end of his rope and come back, like a yo yo, he has never pulled while tied, thank God. The only reason he got loose is because that halter is a breakway, which I wouldn't have tied him in that if I wasn't right there to watch him. (which, a lot of good that did, geesh) And really its the only one that we have that fits him. (or so I thought) So he now has a ugly faded red white and blue one he can wear, ugh, till I can get the money for a new one, durn breakaways are expensive!! But that is all I will turn him out in, so now he is 'naked' for the time being. I will not have a injured/dead horse on my hands from getting hung up in a nylon halter in the pasture somewhere.

So! Onto the new mare!! Skip, the SIL's (sis in law) little palomino colt came from the same place that this mare did, my husbands aunt and uncle. She is also a palomino, and old as dirt. LOL, well not really, I think she is 21. But she LOOKS 21. Daisy is will be 19 this spring but she looks like she is in her early teens. Or younger. She is short also. MAYBE 15 hands. I have money on 14.3, lol. She could definitely use some groceries, but try convincing the all-knowing FIL of this *SIGH*. (I seem to be doing that a lot this post) The uncle says she was a show horse "with a ton of blue ribbons". Really, says I, in what? "Oh I dont know, that was before I bought her". Nice.

So she has pretty decent conformation, the way she is set up kinda leans me towards some sort of pleasure? But she has the FASTEST walk I've ever seen. And I'm talking about just walking in the pasture! Its very purposeful, lol, kinda funny. So maybe a gaming horse? Around here a barrel racer would be right on target. She is short and seems to like to be moooving. (another clue to this comes up below)

Sorry, no picture yet, but will definitely get one soon.

So here's the funny thing. Well one of them, another later. She was out in a huge pasture with at least 9 or 10 other mares and geldings, and has been for years. I think they rode her last, um, 5 years ago? Lol, yeah. When we picked her up, Lees uncle says, "Oh, I ride her in a tie-down" as a passing comment to my BIL. BIL goes "okay." And I'm thinking in my head "WHY??" Because people don't just ride a horse that behaves in a tie-down for the heck of it, lol. But of course he didn't ask, and I wasn't going to ask (I barely know him).

So, the BIL rode her the other day (I wasn't there sadly) and found out why, heheh. She tosses her head alll over the place apparently. Lovely. See, she is supposed to be a mount for the little BIL (see: 3rd Ride and Bareback It). Who has rode a few times, yes, but doesn't know how to RIDE. You know? And I'm not altogether sure she is as great a choice as his uncle thinks. He said she also doesn't want to stay stopped. As in one of those can we go now? now? now? NOW? horses. Ugh. So we know she is a head tosser, fast walker, and apparently has a bit of 'fire' to her. For a young person who hasn't rode a lot. Yeah! *SIGH*

But I can't really judge her till I see her ridden myself, or even better, ride her myself. So I will reserve total judgement until a further date, lol. She is super cute though, and has a loving personality. She is usually staring at us from the fence wanting someone to come get her out or pay attention to her. And will stand there all day if you want to pet her or brush her, etc.

Oh, the other funny thing. She limps at will. As in, the uncle says she will walk sound all day long in the pasture but as soon as you come at her with a saddle she is lame. Its just a quirk of hers, and she will walk out of it eventually. (they trail rode her, apparently she will go anywhere on one easily) So I asked the BIL about this and he said she was fine for awhile, and then he got off for some reason, and back on, and she started limping a bit on a front leg. Great. I just find it hard to believe that this is something a horse would cook up in its head, lol. The uncle says he has taken her to numerous vets and they can't find anything wrong, but who knows. Still sounds a bit odd.

She is in with the two colts right now, she deals with them well. If they get near her she will pin her ears and make sure they KNOW she doesn't want them there, and they will get away with their baby mouths going, lol. But she wont bite or kick at them, thankfully. So all is well there I guess, for now. I just hope our pasture will last. And that we bought enough hay for the winter.

Anywho, as usual I've written a book, geesh. I guess I'll end with that. I put a pic up top of me feeding Tuff one afternoon, Lee and I rode the 4wheeler out there and I just set the bucket there and he ate out of it haha, poor Skip is like wheres mine?? He looks much better now, filled out nicely.

Here are a few random pics I've taken over the last two months.

Tuff and Lee Lee after dove hunting one afternoon

Tuff lookin perty

Rusty pretending to be a pleasure horse.

And looking more like himself there, lol, he still looks like a stud geesh. (they did geld him late)

Ta ta everyone!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

It was a TUFF day! :)

I'm such a dork. (see title)

Anyway, Mondays are my day off so I had a hankerin to go visit Tuff Tuff and work with him a bit. It was a pretty nice day, a little hot, so thats why I put on my short shorts and tank top. And of course paired them with my way cute socks and sneakers, haha. (I've already learned lunging in flip flops = bad idea!) So I took myself out there and called him. Then I went to the shed/barn and got the lunge line, whip, lead rope, brush, fly spray, PHEW, oh and a mane and tail comb, lol. (I think I need a tack box!)

I got out there and didn't see him, so I called again, and then I saw him making his slow way up the lane. I was kinda dissapointed because he didn't call back to me. And then I heard it! His cute little high pitched whinny, hehe.

Bowser came out too, as you can see in my top pic. The two of them touching noses. Tuff does really well with dogs. (as you will see in the video, he doesn't mind them running around him at all!) I think its because the pasture he was born in was right next to TWO houses that each had at least 4 dogs. All of which roamed the pasture at will. So he's been there done that, lol.

Anyway, he's only been lunged in the area right in front of his pasture, so I knew being in a new place could be interesting. But nah, not with mr Tuff Tuff! After I brushed him down real quick and combed his mane and tail a bit, we waltzed over to the larger area out by the driveway, to the side of the in laws house. (who were all miraculously not at home, strange) Along the way we stopped and sniffed various things, trailers, tires, stump grinders, etc. He did very well. I let him out on the lunge at a walk and he was lazy of course, and REALLY wanted to eat grass, but was a good boy. No spooks or freak outs.

We trotted quite a bit. But when I went out there I had in my mind that I wanted to try out his canter that day for the first time. I was a little apprehensive, see as it was his first time doing it. I wasn't real sure he would know what I was asking for. (I even researched about it on the internet! haha) I just wanted it to be a good experience for him.

Well he did fabo! As if there was any doubt! ;) I decided to use the kiss, which is universal, and what I'm used to. So I first got him in a good working trot and then in one of the 'corners' started flicking my whip pretty vehemently and kissing and PLOP there he went! Only one or two strides mind you, but thats all I was really wanting to begin with. I let him trot another half circle and asked for it again in the same place and he did even better, and actually went quite a ways before I brought him back to a trot and then walk. And of course went over and loved on him, he was like, ladee da. Whatever.

Now for the bad news. WRONG LEAD. Every time! UGHHH. Now, I dunno, I wasn't even worried about that part! I just figured him being on a circle and all he would have no reason NOT to be on the right lead. I've seen him get both just fine in the pasture. Well, to the left for sure he didn't get any of them. And if anything, he is left handed. (I did maybe 3 or 4 transitions) Now when I reversed him and went to the right, he MAY have stayed on the right lead and got that one, but by that time I was second guessing myself, and also my video had run out so I can't watch that either. Bummer. Next time I will have someone out to help video and watch.

So! A baby thing? Or will this be something I'm going to have to do some serious work on? I HOPE it was just a ahh, first time on the lunge, what do I do with my legs??? thing. Any ideas on what do to do help him get it? Bigger circle? Smaller circle? I know what your typically supposed to do is keep pulling them down from it until they get the correct, and then let them go on it. But with it being his first time I was very hesitant to reprimand him for something he didn't know he was doing. Ya know? So next time I might try a bit harder to get the right one, but still not sure what the best way of doing that IS.

Any help is greatly appreciated!

Overall I was very pleased with him. I was expecting maybe at least ONE acrobatic maneuver, maybe a spurt of speed, etc. NOTHIN! Fine by me! I'm sure I will see this at a later date of course, but I'm glad he was so ho hum about it. He came right back down to his old plodding walk afterwards like it was nothing. :) He really wasn't hot either! Not really blowing or sweaty at all. I WAS! lol. So he must be in pretty decent shape. Could be all that chasing his uncle and momma have been doing to him lately, lol.

Here's some of my favorite stills from the video.






Thats not all we did though! I've been wanting to give him a 'real' bath now for some time. Well the opportunity presented itself and I took it! He did that very well also! (Yall can't tell I wuv him can you, lol)

It was a bit awkward trying to give him a bath and keep him from eating grass, etc, but I got it done. There was just no where to tie him up where the hose would reach. I tried to get him pretty wet while the water wasn't COLD yet, but not burning up either (you know how hot water in a hose is on a summer day!) and he didn't move, just wanted to drink from it lol. You could tell he wasn't thrilled when you got around his hind end, but he is MUCH better then he was. Last time I got him wet he would pick up each hind leg and hold it, lol. This time he stood but for a few times.

He felt and looked SO GOOD afterwards, all silvery and silky, love it. After I was done I let him graze in the grass in front of the pasture, he LOVED THAT! I just left him there while I put things up, gave them water, etc. He was very happy.

So! Another 'first' thing to cross off my list! Next is his first trailer ride. The BIL and FIL are thinking of buying a 2 horse soon maybe, so that would be good. I'd like him to preferably not be full grown for his first time, lol. After that riding! Fun fun! I don't forsee that being a problem at all. We need a round pen first though! Even I don't trust him that much, haha.

Oh, I just remembered. I also tried my bitless bridle on him, but sadly its still too big.


Here's a few more pics, of course!

This was before his bath, after lunging. I sat down on the bench to adjust the bitless bridle and he thought my knees were very interesting.
The colors are kinda ick in this one, but you can still see how perty he is ;) And wet!

Grazing happily.
Other side! Still grazing happily, lol.

On to the videos!! Here is our lunging one:


Lunging Tuff from Britnieann on Vimeo.


And a bit of his bath, just the first bit. Yeah, he does look ribby, don't worry, we are working on that!

Bath Time! from Britnieann on Vimeo.


Some other good news, the little BIL had a great idea. He decided to divide the big pasture up, so that the colts could eat in peace on one side, and the older horses wouldn't be able to bother them. So I was able to walk Tuff out there and introduce him to it the other day. They were both very happy! Skip even TROTTED by himself down the hill to the grass! Haha, I was also pleased that Tuff (who I had on a lead line) stayed calm and behaved while his buddy went flying past him, he didn't mind at all. I walked him up the fence line a bit and then let him go. He went straight to eating of course. Here's a pic of him from then:



So thats all for now! Its taken me all week to get this thing published, lol. Have a great weekend everyone!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Yearling Training

So I'm at work, its Saturday, boo, and quiet here, so I have time to blog! Yeah!

I got both babies out yesterday and did some work with them. Not much, but it was fun. Lee and I had went out to the big pasture that afternoon to scope out the bird action. Dove season opens today and he has been feeding them cracked corn out there to get them to come in. Well we rode the BILs 4wheeler out there to see how many dove were out there and then came back to the in laws house.
Skip came rambling up to the pasture near the house, but there was no sign of Tuff. Odd. I called for him and I hear his real high pitched NEIGH coming from the gate to the big pasture. That cracks me up that he will answer me almost every time I do his special 'call'.

So the little BIL gets on his 4wheeler and goes out to find him. Well a few seconds later we hear the 4wheeler revving up and slowing down and revving up and slowing down, and we're like, what is he doing?? And then here they come, he is HERDING Tuff with the 4wheeler! LOL, it was so funny. He was trotting ahead of it for a bit and then when he met up with Skip, they both plodded along in front of it like plow horses at about 2 mph. It was so funny. I'm glad they aren't scared of it!

So I went to the gate and Tuff plodded up to greet me, and then I grabbed a lead rope, brush, and the weight tape. Dragged him out of the pasture and parked him up near the trees where the swing and bench is, and also my husband, his brother, and then later the FIL came out. He didn't want to 'park' to begin with, but after a few times of, if you move you get to back really fast down the hill, he decided it was easier to be still, lol. He's no dummy! I think he was just excited to be out of his pen and out and about.

So I brushed him a bit, picked up his hooves and held them, weighed him (he is around 554 :) ) and then practiced some lateral flexing. He remembers it quite well. He should be pretty light in the face by the time I'm ready to ride him. Which with the way he is growing now, wont be for another 2 years! I was wanting to start him next summer/fall, just walked and steering stuff. But we will just have to see.

After that I decided to see how well he remembered his lunge lessons, its been a good 3 months since I lunged him last. And he did just as good as I knew he would. A little 'sticky' but thats no suprise. After I whacked him with the lead rope (brought out my special long one, I love it, its soft and long enough to lunge a smallish circle and still have enough to whack with! haha) if he didn't respond to my light cue, he decided it was easier to not get whacked. He trotted out good on it too, and even did good on his 'bad' side! (the right) I was very pleased!

So, I let him sniff the 4wheeler a bit, threw the white weight tape around his body a bit, around his head, swung it in circles, etc, then put him up.

While I was lunging Tuff the little BIL had said, "how did you get him to do that? Skip won't do it for nothin." I replied, "I bet I could get him to do it". Sigh, famous last words!

So after I put Tuff up I got Skip out. I've not done anything but hold him for the SIL (sis in law) a bit, so I don't know much about him. The last time I really did anything with him he was VERY skittish about people. He's not like that anymore, thankfully.

So the first thing I notice is he has a big, heavy head. Tuff is very light and watches my body when I go, stop, etc. Skip hasn't been worked with as much and you can tell. He is a sweet boy though.

So I decided to teach him about lateral flexing, which took about 30 mins, yikes. The thing with him was he couldn't understand that I wanted him to turn his head to the side, but NOT MOVE. We backed and sidepassed all over that area, lol. But I did get him half way consistent with it both sides before I quit. Then I decided to try what I had origionally brought him out for, lunging. I put him in a real short circle and waved the lead rope at his butt, until he moved a foot, then quit. Very quickly he was doing well on a small circle at the walk. Stopping well, etc. Then I tried to get a trot out of him. TRIED being the key word. Yall, there are no words to describe how DEAD SKINNED, DEAD SIDED, DEAD HEADED, whatever way you want to say it, he is! I was litterally BEATING him with the lead rope at one point and he would NOT break into a trot. It was about to drive me crazy. I got it a few times, but a step or two at MOST. I was working FOUR times as hard as the colt, lol, never a good sign! (the lead rope kept getting wound around and was not very effective, part of my problem)

So the little BIL brings out the lunge whip. I kept the lash in and just tapped him with the pole, that worked marginally better, but not very well. I was chasing him all over that area with it, basically. And then he started turning to face me. So then I finally had a light bulb moment and pulled him in on the circle close enough that he couldnt do that, and I could stay behind him to drive him. And AGAIN, literally beating his butt with the whip and getting MARGINAL response. I have never in my life heard, seen, such a thing. I know I could have done something better, but I'm no expert! I did my best, although I have to admit I did lose my temper with him.

He wasn't misbehaving, per say, I just don't think he really KNEW what I was wanting. If it had been my colt, I probably wouldn't have asked him to trot that quickly. Even though he had been lunged a few times prior to this, I had not been there, it wasn't me. My bad.

So anyway, finally I got him to the point where he would walk faster when I told him, and then we got a few trots without me beating him, lol. So I quit on that. I made sure I rubbed him with the whip a lot so he didn't think it was evil, but he didn't seem to mind it. He is a very quiet horse. DEAD quiet almost, yikes. He didn't seem upset or resentful at all. I don't know if I should get a stick with a rustley bag on it, or what. I heard that somewhere for a horse that wont get any energy up. (not sure it would work for him anyway) But I think once he realizes the cues for speed up better, he will be okay. Just lots of work to get him to respect and understand them.

So that was my adventure yesterday! I'd like to get Tuff out and work on some long lining. I did one session a while ago, and he was a bit confused. He didnt get that swinging lines against your butt means go! I think I will bring the lunge whip with me this time, so I don't have to pull on his head at all. And also inlist a person to lead him a bit until he gets the hang of it.

Thats all! Wow, can yall believe I have just posted a entry with NO PICTURES!! Unheard of!! ;)

The Reunion

Hey guys, not much horsey stuff been going on lately, thus no posts! Although something did happen on the day of my last post that I haven't gotten around to posting.

Tuff rejoined his mommy! We put them all back together in a big, oh, at least 10 acre pasture. And while I was NOT expecting it to go real well, it went even WORSE then I thought!

So, Daisy and Rusty were in that smaller pasture just down the gravel road from the other, so we just walked them over to the gate of the big one. Daisy was power walking it! Which it was down a slope, but thats unusual for her, lol. I think she was excited. Well we get to the gate and here is the site that greets us, lol. (my two BILs had rustled up the colts so they could all meet with the gate as a barrier first.)











So we walked Daisy and Rusty up, they all sniffed for awhile, yada yada, no squeals, pawing, etc.











Here's a pic of Daisy and Tuff, so cute! And the next is her and the colts, and then their 'uncle' Rusty and the 'babies'. Rusty looks VERY interested, lol.

So I bring Daisy in and the FIL brings Rusty in after and I let Daisy off the lead and then the colts got behind her and she double barrels them at them!! Then takes off trotting out into the open field. Colts right after her! The FIL was slow at getting Rusty undone, so he starts having a fit, you can watch most of it here. After he gets loose he BOOKS it after them all, lol, hes a fast scudder. The camera gets handed from the husband to me at one point so thats why it goes upside down, haha.

video

So then I run out after them, cause I'm missing all the action! Well I get out there and can't find them! I'm starting to freak because I start thinking, oh no, what if they all ran up toward the house (theirs a pretty narrow lane of hot wire up to the small area near the house) I didn't want them getting into kicking fights up there, thats for sure!

Well we finally find them, on opposite sides of the pasture!! You can barely see it in this pic, Daisy and Rusty are chompin down in the left corner, and the babies are checkin them out. So for the next 2 hours or so we try to get them closer together so they can do their 'getting to know you' stuff while we are there to supervise. The babies wanted nothing to do with them! And we soon found out why. Daisy apparently kicked Tuff in the gut at one point, and Rusty CHASES them everwhere. I've got a few vids of that, will try to get them uploaded. It takes soo long though. So anyway, here's a few more pics I got.


This was Lee dragging them out of one of their hiding places. Poor babies.
And then a neat picture of my hubby. There is a tripod deer stand in the pasture, he was the eye in the sky, hehe.
Tuff and Skip saying, can we go back to the other pasture, PLEASE!
They are such good buddies. I never see them bite at each other, or even lay ears back at each other. Lee thinks they would be a good 'team'. I said do you have any idea how expensive harness is! Not to mention a cart! But that would be neat! Lee used to work for a guy who had a farm with a bunch of Suffolk horses, and he used to harness and drive them a bit, the guy mostly used them for working the land, plowing and the like.

Here's another vid, this one is Rusty chasing the poor babies. This is after I chased them toward Rusty so they could get to know each other and quit that crap, but of course it didn't work and he chased them back. :( I say soemthing like SEE, look what happened! Which is because I said when I saw the colts coming toward me I didn't want to chase them back to them, I knew Rusty was going to do that.

video

So the conlusion is that apparently Rusty thinks of Daisy as his 'mare' and wants them no where near her. He didn't bother to chase them until they got close. These are after we brought them back to the little pasture, we kept them seperated if we weren't out there to watch them.

Tuff has medicine on his wounds, thats the white stuff. They got cut up from being in the woods fleeing!
Tuff eating a strand of hay off the hot wire, goofy boy.
This was when Daisy was getting her shoes pulled and feet rasped a bit. (the white thing is my over shirt, haha, she was holding it for me) She lost one running like crazy out there, so I brought her up to the house so the FIL could just pull the rest till I can get her trimmed. She was a good girl, I thought she might be a bit of a pain since she had to leave everyone behind, but she just neighed real low for him a bit. She has A REALLY deep neigh, its so funny.
RUSTY on the other hand was having a FIT over in the other pasture, screaming and running like an idiot forever.

Anyway!
Its been two weeks now and Tuff has all manner of scratches and such all over him. I guess they run into the woods to escape. I haven't seen any new ones in the past few days though, so maybe they are getting better. Most of the time the babies stay up near the house away from them. And lately Daisy has been being evil to them! She tries to paw their heads in if they get close to her and SHE will chase them too. Geesh, stinkin horses! I think she is in heat though.

So! That is the drama that went on after I rode Daisy bareback the other day. And it still isn't finished. I sure hope they get their dynamics figured out soon!

I will post next about what I did with the two colts yesterday. They got a big of a training refresher. :)