Monday, November 28, 2011

Full Weekend

I had a wonderful weekend at home eating lots of food, watching a ton of holiday movies, making christmas cookies, shopping and of course hanging with the horses. Poor Jetta has had the longest break ever - a whole 5 days - which I feel terrible about her just hanging in her stall. But I promised her I'd ride her on Monday! She was definitely a fun little fire ball today, but surprisingly not bad. But I did get to have some fun with my project pony over the weekend.

Here's The Stats

Age: 3 years old
Height: Between 16 and 16.1 hh
Breed: Gypsy Vanner x Clydesdale PMU
Weight: approx. 1400 pounds

I was very pleased with how quickly he learned. The first day I had a 30 minute training session on how to lead. Obviously he's halter broke, but he stops and starts when he walks for no reason. He'll freeze and not budge, he invades your space and lags far behind you. So, step 1 - Leading with his ear parallel to my shoulder. He did very good with this, though there were quite a few "OH MY GOSH SHE'S TRYING TO KILL ME" moments when I tapped him on the butt with my whip to get him to step up. But he learned that while I do go mud skiing fairly well, it's not acceptable to haul me around and in reality, it's much easier to walk forward when I say so :) He caught on to the whole leading thing very quickly. I was amazed - it's going to be tough to stick to my schedule of slow and steady with this guy!

Since he had mastered the leading thing well, I practiced having him stop with me, back up when I do, as well as yeilding his shoulders and hindquarters. He definitely has a little bit of sass! We were walking past the pond when he just decided to "notice" it, sidestepping his shoulder onto me. I stopped him and made him yeild the shoulder away from me and he started shaking his head at me like he was going to whack me with it. Naughty boy! But within a circle or two of making him move his shoulder, crossing over in front, I felt like I could have entered him in a showmanship class he was doing so well!

We just walked around the pasture, one loop. The pasture is pretty hilly and about 3 acres, but it wasn't a very tough workout but he was still pretty hot by the end. Oh, BlubberBoy I've got my work cut out with you!!

On Sunday I worked on leading again, just the same loop around the pasture. It was much easier this time and after a brief reminder to keep up, I barely had to correct him and no more hauling on the lead rope! It is an absolute pet peeve of mine when horses don't lead properly and their owners allow them to walk all over them. I won't allow that to be the case here, lol!

Of course, both days to mix it up and make it fun and interesting, we took some breaks, particularly around the apple trees ;)

You called?

Tree full of apples


Grady: Delicately takes small bites out of his apple.

Colton: Nom, I will eat this big apple in one bite!!

Of course the bad part about being a dorky baby is that he did put the whole giant apple in his mouth and after watching him for a minute, hoping he wasn't going to choke on it while he rolled it around his mouth trying to decide how in the world he was going to eat it, I opened his mouth and took it out, holding it for him so he could take a smaller bite. I do not want him to get an apple lodged in his throat the first month he's at my house! Silly pony...


  1. My goodness he is a cute giant baby, isn't he? I had to laugh when I read about the mud skiing. Been there, done that! Fortunately it seems like you won't be doing that anymore with him.

  2. He is pretty cute! It's great that he is such a quick learner!

  3. I hate horses with bad ground manners. Way to go!

  4. I just had to go looking after your question, apparently the hoof has arteriovenous shunts that redirect the blood supply to venules, bypassing the capillaries in order the keep the vital tissues warm. It's a cold climate adaptation. Also look at rete mirabile.

  5. What a gorgeous boy :)!
    Sounds like you getting his ground manners a lot better.
    Can't wait to read about the rest of his training.

  6. Thanks everyone!

    Smazourek - Thanks for digging up the answer for me! I did a quick google search and didn't find any info on horses, so I'm glad you were able to clear that up. Very interesting tidbit of info there.