Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Beautiful Day

I had fun riding all the horses today! It was a very pretty day today. I think I was at the barn for like four hours, but it was nice because I didn't have anywhere to go so I could spend as much time there as I wanted. One person rode, but not for very long so it was nice to have the arena all to myself.

I rode Katy first and she was pretty stiff so we did some bending exercises and worked on transitions. She loosened up by the end which was good, but she needs work. I think ML should do some conditioning stuff with her and more bending exercises - they would really benefit her. She's so slow and starts huffing and puffing after only one canter lap around the ring. I wonder if we should up her grain, give her some more carbs for energy. Right now she only gets grass hay (and occasionally timothy) with about a cup of grain with her supplements. I swear she gets fat off air!

Jetta was next and she was ok. I bought a full cheek french link snaffle over the weekend in an attempt to end the never-ending search for the perfect bit. So far so good. She didn't act up any more than usual and I think I like the lateral stability that it gives us. She was a little all over the place. She wanted to trot really fast and when I asked her to slow it down a bit she'd try to walk or give me a baby jog so I'd give the slightest squeeze with my calves and off we would go trotting like mad. Sigh. She was doing so good - I've been working on her slowing down slightly but still taking long, sweeping steps. I guess that's what I get for her not getting ridden for two days.

After that Jetta got a bath. That was frustrating. The so-called wash rack is a two sided area with a drain in the middle and a hose. Not exactly what I'd call anything close to a wash rack. There was no where to tie to - no cross ties, no tie ring, so I held onto her. The hose was super long and was looped and tangled all over the place. Even though the BO said there was hot water, no matter how I twiddled the knobs the temperature was still freezing. Jetta refused to stand still so we had a little talk about that which resulted in if she stood still for a few seconds I would give her a break from being sprayed. I know it wasn't 100% her fault cause the water was cold and she wasn't tied, but she was being really naughty, at one point I was worried that she'd fall on the slippery concrete floor (because of course there were no mats at all). So that was slightly frustrating. She's mostly clean though now. I didn't get her tail or her mane, so I'll do that another time, but she's clean for the time being!

Jetta all squeaky clean in her new cooler.

Because she was so bad she got to stand in the cross ties while I rode Tanq. He was so fun! He's definitely a horse that you have to ride a certain way. Do something wrong and he's like Um, no. You didn't ask right. There were a few moments like that. He is so humongous! It's good that he's so well mannered because if he was a brat it'd be unmanageable. We just did a light work out. I went through exactly what CL always does - lunge in side reins then warm up in the saddle, walk trot canter on a loose rein. I think he likes routine a lot so he settled down when he realized that I wasn't some weird crazy person that wanted to change things up! He was really good, usually he's pretty lazy and CL always has to use a lot of leg to keep him moving in a semi-forward fashion, but he was really forward today. His canter though is very up and down, not a whole lot of forward. Very interesting ride. I practiced my sitting trot on him because he is boun-cy. Not really hard to sit, just requires quite a bit of muscle to sustain. I'm not sure I could hold it for a whole dressage test!

Tanq in his very masculine pink boots. I think he looks handsome :) 

It was a great day overall but I'm still a little frustrated with the barn. It is a lot better than all the other places we looked at by a long shot, but first the "wash rack" then every time I come to the barn Jetta's stall looks disgusting. I ended up semi-stripping her stall and adding a bag of pellets. There's a list on the wall where the pellets are so that the stall cleaners and people that do their own stalls can record how many bags they use. It says Jetta got one on Sunday and I marked another one down for today. It just kind of irritates me that I'm paying the extra money for full care but still am not satisfied with the care. The sign by the pellets says that you can only use 11 bags a month, which is actually a lot more than the last barn I boarded at, but still, I think that the horses should get the amount of bedding that they need. Some horses are just messy and you can't make them live in a messy stall, it's not going to make them learn to be cleaner and its not healthy for their feet or for their lungs breathing in the fumes. Grr. We'll see what happens this summer, ML and I may be looking into moving to another barn, but we'll see. This is still the nicest barn around that I've seen at least. I think I'll also talk to the BO about adding hay for lunch for Jetta. I'm pretty sure a couple other horses get lunch and I hate to see Jetta standing in her stall with no hay and reduced to hoovering up stray pieces. Well, that's my rant for the day!


  1. I pay for full care, but do my own stall. The kid that is supposed to do them is not my favorite and not very thorough, but a favorite of the BO.

    So. I just consider it as something I do for Izzy and remember that the joy of full care is that if/when I'm out of town, I know someone is taking care of it.

    It's annoying, but it's not worth leaving this barn over.

  2. What a wonderful blog!!

  3. @SprinklerBandit - yeah, I'm pretty much in the same boat. I just hope that someday I can have my own barn to keep my horses at where I can control their care!

    @Julie - Thank you!