Horse Life

Discussion Board: Multiple Horses

It finally happened.

-What-meme-12129Husband cracked.

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You see, I’ve been hopping on FB a bit more than usual lately and I pretty much just have 2 profile pages that I go straight to. Both are well-respected OTTB re-sellers, including the one I got P from, and both have a fairly steady stream of drool-worthy horses in their barns.

There’s one for sale right now that is the absolute spitting image of P when I got him nearly 5 years ago and I literally CAN’T. EVEN. I think I’ve watched his video perhaps 10,000 times. Some people see babies and want a baby. Not me…but give me baby TBs any day.

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Waaaay back when…to a time where I didn’t want to feed him to the lions.

So anyway, last night I mention to Husband that I talked to the seller of Pilgrim 2.0 to get some additional info, and Husband was all, “Cool, see what Trainer B thinks.”

what-trickery-is-this-Which I totally didn’t expect. Then Husband started talking about PPEs and the like, and I was all, “Woah, slow your roll. Nothing’s happening just yet.”

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See…I’m not a very spontaneous person. I struggle with making decisions because I need ALL THE INFO. Then I need to dissect, analyze and interpret the info. Then I need a drink (or ten) to close down the dozens of internet-like tabs that are open in my head. It’s a problem.

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So all night I was just thinking about the possible consequences of adding a second horse. And some alternative routes I might take, depending on what happens with P.

And I have no answers.

The Bad: I work full-time and have 2 kids, with a Husband who is frequently out of town, so time is something I don’t have a lot of. On days that Husband is gone, one ride is the max I’m getting.

Even on days where I don’t have to leave the barn early to get kids, it would still be hard to fit in two. Horse #1 from 5-5:45, then Horse #2 from 6:15-7, then home by 8? Not always possible, considering I do like to do things like eat dinner and sometimes see my family.

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So if I were to settle on one horse per day during the week, that’d be Horse #1 getting 3 rides and Horse #2 getting 2 rides, then possibly getting both done on weekends?

Reasonable? Sure. Doable? Hmmmmm.

The Good: Uhhh…having two horses to ride is better than not having ANY horses to ride. Duh.

The Bad: 

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If you’ve ever read my year-end blog posts where I insanely add up my annual expenditures, you know I spend a small fortune on the one horse I have now- the biggest expenses being board, lessons and showing. Obviously board would just double, but what do y’all multi-horse owners do about lessons and shows? Alternate or take both?

Another bad: Husband literally JUST built me living quarters in my 2 horse trailer, which means I use the 2nd stall in the trailer for equipment. Would I need a new trailer?

I can already feely myself start to spiral, just typing this out.

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The Good: Still having two horses to ride. I feel like I’m repeating myself here.

Those are just a couple of the thoughts swirling around in my brain. I’m sure I’m leaving out a whole host of things, good and bad, about dual horse ownership.

So- do you have, or have had, multiple horse? What are the pros/cons? If you don’t have multiple horses, would you ever? Why or why not?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Horse Life

P: His Future As Lion Food

After a couple glasses of wine (ok, maybe a bottle), I texted the following to Husband:

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Hence why I don’t often get on FB- it is DANGEROUS

I don’t know what I actually expected in response, but it quickly turned dark. I’d blame the wine, but I’m totes sober right now and still feel the same way.

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Maybe I’m joking. Maybe I’m not.

See…besides being an idiot in the pasture and injuring his suspensory in August, thus forcing me to rehab him for 6 months, and then subsequently being an idiot in the cross ties in February and tearing a HOLE IN HIS FOOT, requiring multiple vet/farrier visits and special shoes, not to mention more time off, literally the ONLY THING I needed P to do was LEAVE THE SHOE ALONE.

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Whelp.

Clearly someone took off his listening ears

He ripped it off last Saturday, but AGF was coming out to do P and some of the other horses on Monday anyway, so I Magic Cushioned/vet wrapped/duct taped him, and put him back out. But not before snapping some pictures. And…? The FOOT HOLE looks BETTER than the rest of his hoof now.

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The Foot Hole is on the inside and the shoe damage is the outside. WTF P.

But check out the insane healing.

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March 4
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April 8: No more exposed soft tissue and the sole has grown back rapidly

So AGF came out to see what he could do, but there was zero anything to nail a shoe into. Given P’s proneness to removing shoes, he didn’t want to glue anything and risk more damage, so I had to order a boot for him. No clue how long this is going to last, but it was $90 so if he damages it, he’s just out of luck. I’ll gladly amputate his leg myself.

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After AGF worked his magic. Now it just needs to grow, grow, grow.
The boot has lasted a week- 4 more to go

The one upside is that because there’s no shoe to worry about, he can be in a pasture vs the round pen.

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Out with a buddy for the first time in 8 months! BO chose Copper, who is in her 20’s and is the only horse who will put P in his place. Note P’s slightly scared expression.

But he’s still as happy as ever to see me, despite his freedom, and gallops to the gate whenever he sees me. Which sorta makes me feel guilty for so readily suggesting he’ll make tasty lion food. But only sorta.

On the C front, things have been a no-go. He was a little foot sore when he arrived, which may be due to the fact that his feet are mush from living outside in a wet field. He has extremely flat front feet, so I opted to wait to ride until AGF could check him out and possibly put him in pads. I say “opted,” but really I was swamped getting ready for my work’s fundraiser followed by an entire weekend filled with Spartan races, so even if I’d wanted to ride, I wouldn’t have been able to.

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A friend and I jumping over the fire to end the 8.3 mile Spartan Super on Saturday.
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Smiling now. A mere few hours later, I’d find out about P ripping off his shoe.
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Back on Sunday for the 4 mile Spartan Sprint with Husband and friends. Clearly this was before the race.
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Husband insisted on running the entire race (including obstacles) with THE COW BONE. It now resides in his office. Blech.

Anyways, AGF checked C out, put him in shoes 2 sizes bigger (C’s owner warned me the farrier she used back home was not the best…clearly), and did pads/EquiPak. C was starting to move better, even trotting to the gate, then suddenly went dead lame. Sounds like an abscess is brewing, so he’s on Bute and small turnout for now. If he’s not any better at the end of the month, his owner will be coming to get him.

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He’s better at selfies than I am

So basically nothing is going as it should. Story of horses, I guess.

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I need to blow this up and plaster it all over P’s and C’s stalls. Because COME.ON.
Horse Life

Foster Brother

I’m having a serious horse hangover today. Somehow I went from 0 horses to ride to 3. Well, 2.5.

Friday I was getting stuff out of my car, which was parked next to the round pen. I heard hooves and look up to see P just casually trotting around the round pen, trying to get my attention. Sound as can be.

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Wut…I didn’t do nuffin

Challenge accepted.

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Maybe a little shell-shocked. We FINALLY got to try out the PS of Sweden bridle we got from Megan!

This was the first time I’d gotten on my horse since February 23rd. Lined him up with the mounting block and prepared myself to get run away with. But…nothing. He waited until I got settled and asked him to walk, then we ambled around the arena.

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Now…am I supposed to be riding? No. The vet had said he could go back undersaddle when his foot has grown out. But mentally, P needs something to do other than sit in the round pen by himself for 18 hours/day. He can’t go back in the pasture because of the mud, and that shoe absolutely has to stay on. And if P can trot and canter around the round pen, he can cart me around the sand arena at a walk for 6 minutes (which is how long I stayed on).

Then after those 6 minutes of non-excitement, I hopped on S for a bareback hack around the farm.

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I’ve been back riding S for the last 2 weeks and he’s been super. After fighting (or playing…with S, who knows?) with a copper head and needing lots of time off to heal, he lost a lot of weight and muscle, but he’s packing it back on and feeling great.

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He’s for sale, if you know anyone looking for a solid, safe horse! I’m pretty sure he wants to event.

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S’s first event at BN, where he KILLED it

And then Saturday….oh Saturday.

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I hopped on P for a few minutes. Then did a dressage ride with S.

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Finishing with a quick visit to P

And then…C arrived!

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The C who could treats BN fences like speed bumps

Came off the trailer after a 6 hour ride, blinked a few times and walked to his new pasture like he’d lived there forever.

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Why u staring at me? I haz grass to eat

Later I brought him into his new stall, and he immediately chowed right down.

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He’s got some scratches on his hind legs, as his home was hit hard by all the rain and is quite muddy, but some Coat Defense will clear those right up.

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Then after 8 hours at the barn, Husband and I went out to hang with some friends. I’ve been sorely lacking the in the social life department lately. Because…horses. Duh.

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Love this guy who’s been cool about me paying for 2 horses

And among 6 of us, ordered 60 tacos. I wasn’t sure what the rest of my friends would eat…

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Hugging tacos makes me happy

So the next morning, having gained about 15 lbs, I went out and rode S and then C. C and I just did a 20 minute light w/t/c ride, and finished with a hack around the farm so he could get to know his new digs.

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C will become quite familiar with this hill in the near future

And ended our ride with a trip past P, who by now is used to seeing me on S but had no idea what to think of his bay replacement.

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P: Who dis? Me: Your foster bro because you’re an idiot P: Oh. Right.

Then after that, I went home and Husband had added C to my Wall of Winning in our library.

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C will spend the foreseeable future gaining a little bit of weight and building some muscle, then will hopefully be good to go for a spring debut!

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Horse Life

Quick P Update

In the excitement of actually doing a thing on a horse again, P has sort of been pushed to the back burner. Well, not sort of- he definitely has. There’s not much I can do with him other than bandage his stupid Foot Hole, then put him back in the round pen.

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At this point I’m convinced he’ll be in there forever

After P lost his special shoe on the 19th and the vet did a re-check of the Foot Hole where she declared it to be healing nicely, AGF (Almighty Genius Farrier) came out on the 21st to reattach the shoe. Then on the 23rd, while I was in VA, I got a text from BO that P’s special shoe had slid a little, along with the following picture:

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Worried this clip will get embedded

I didn’t want to pull the shoe because the vet was adamant that he needed it on so he wouldn’t do any (more) damage to his foot or the structures around it, but I also didn’t want the clip to break off additional hoof wall. But AGF responded and said that as long as the shoe is tight, which it is, that the clip would be fine and the hoof wall is too broken to do anything else to. So cross your fingers the damn shoe stays on until we re-check on April 17th.

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Convo with BO. She gets me

Our bandaging routine for the last 4 weeks has consisted of me soaking a gauze pad in betadine, sugar and MSM, and stuffing it in the Foot Hole, then wrapping vet wrap and duct tape around it to keep it in there. The betadine keeps it disinfected and the sugar/MSM granules dry up the soft tissue. It’s been a daily part of my routine (yay for me), but in the past few days I’ve had an increasingly harder time getting the gauze pad in there, and then yesterday it just didn’t fit at all, despite me shaving it down to almost nothingness.

Because…

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March 28th

Compared to:

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March 4th

 

I stopped using Keratex on it last week, as I wasn’t sure if the hardening of the hoof wall was contributing to the cracking of it, so now he’s just on his regular Pro-Elite Senior feed/balancer/hay, along with Double Strength Farrier’s Formula, and then gets the WunderHoof rub on it daily. I’m almost out of the tub of Wunderhoof, as I’m quite generous with the stuff, and will definitely be ordering more. I don’t know if that’s what’s doing the trick, but I’m not stopping it to experiment!

So that’s about all there is to talk about on P. He’s sound trotting and cantering around the round pen, and walks fine even over gravel and rocks. He’s definitely itching to go back to work and stares like a total creeper at me the entire time I’m riding S in the arena (which is below the round pen).

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When he is cleared to go back to work, which according to the vet, may very well be sooner than originally expected, I’m planning on sending him to training straight away. After the last 6 months of doctoring the horse, I’m ready for some time apart.

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Horse Shows

Professional BN Rider Part Deux

So when we left off yesterday, I had decided that, despite having ridden this particular horse all of 90 minutes, I’d compete him at BN. Which yes, BN is the lowest of all the recognized levels and not exactly hard. But seeing as I’d completed 4 horse trials at BN/N in the last 12 months, I’m not exactly, uh, what you’d call a seasoned competitor.

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Did I mention I had only jumped 2x since last October at this point? And maybe ridden a grand total of 7 days in the past month, since P broke off his hoof?

Did I mention the horse had sat in a pasture not doing anything for the last 3 years?

Yes? Ok, we’re all caught up.

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So Sunday came and we loaded C up and headed off to Loch Moy. I’d never been there before but definitely want to go back. Their MDHT Starter Series is similar to Carolina Horse Park’s War Horse Event Series, where the courses/fences are what you’d see at recognized HTs, but for a fraction of the cost. #Winning.

I got on about 30 minutes before dressage and C came out ready to work. He felt great until he took a weird step as we tried to avoid colliding with a man who clearly didn’t care who or what was in his path, then took some head-bobbingly lame steps. And I thought hard about quitting horses forever.

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But after a minute or two at the walk, we picked the trot back up and C was just fine.

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Winning warm-up, so the potential is there

Still, as we circled around the arena waiting to go in, I was nervous that the lameness would come back and we’d get thrown out of the dressage arena, which is probably why I didn’t notice that I WAS ON THE WRONG EFFING DIAGONAL LIKE A BEGINNER.

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I swear I’ve ridden before.

From the little I’ve ridden him and the little his owner has told me, C’s canter is hard. The horse gets a break because he’s not fit, though, and I didn’t exactly help him by being on the wrong diagonal and not knowing him well enough to predict his reactions. So we landed the wrong lead in the first circle and when I brought him back down to fix it, C had, uh feelings about that.

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The walk was slow and disconnected (something I’d already been warned about by his owner), and the right lead canter was very emotional.

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Afterwards the judge was nice enough to explain her scoring, but she definitely wasn’t a fan of C’s, and wasn’t a fan of mine until she asked if he was my horse and I said no, I’d only ridden him a couple of times. She changed her tone then, and said I was a good rider despite him being difficult with some upside down muscling, gave me some tips on things to work on, and we were finally set free. After that, I figured we’d score like a 70 (in penalties).

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But we scored 7’s and 7.5’s for the trot work, and 7’s for both centerlines (booyah), with a 7 for gaits and for rider, so that evened out our score to a 40.3 and put us in the very competitive position of last place.

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But…whatever. We stayed in the arena, he wasn’t lame, and who actually cares about a dressage score when there are jumps to be jumped?

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I feel ya, C

Stadium was next and when it came time to hop on, I found myself with my usual knot of trepidation that comes along with SJ + an extra heaping of nerves that I wouldn’t be able to steer. The warmup was a zoo, so I just walked a few laps until it thinned out some, then popped him over the vertical and then oxer a few times. It seemed to go well until he did his whole, Right-Side-Is-Stuck-Must-Plant-Feet-Solidly thing when coming off the left lead, and I figured all hope of steering around a course was nil.

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How I predicted our course would go

Naturally the course started with a bending line off the left lead, so I planned to trot the first fence and take it from there. He either doesn’t have flying changes or is just not strong enough, so I figured if he landed on the wrong lead I’d trot the next fence, rather than re-enact the emotions he had when I corrected his lead in dressage. And I stuck to my plan- we had some really nice fences (including NAILING the TWO-STRIDE) and went double clear!

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When I finally got him pulled up (we lapped the arena nearly 2x before I could stop him), I was honestly thinking of maybe just ending it there. I suck at stadium and somehow got this strange horse around clear while looking semi-decent, so why not end on a high note? But I really couldn’t make myself do it, and figured I’d pop him over a couple XC jumps and make a final decision then.

Because, ya know, I’ve never jumped this horse XC, and while I myself haven’t been on an XC course in 5+ months, he hasn’t been on one in ohhh, ya know, YEARS.

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But again…YOLO? So I aimed him for the BN log warmup fence and he went over it with zero hesitation. Ok then. Let’s do the damn thing!

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C & I on the way to the start box

Since the first fence was so close to the start box, I figured I’d come out trotting instead of messing with his canter and then take it from there. Besides a biff at fence 3 (seriously, NO ONE took that fence nicely- everyone chipped and I was determined I could do better, but clearly not), and the part where he almost ran off with me past the water, he was an absolute machine.

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Clearly uphill fences are not even slightly a challenge
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Burning some rubber. Well, turf
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I think someone is locked onto the fence

And the helmet cam view! The last 3 fences of the course were ones that, during the coursewalk, I had targeted at those P would definitely have a hard look at. Check out C’s reaction to the speed bumps.

Here’s a sneak peek:

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Note: I purchased this picture already and am just waiting for the photographer to send it to me, but couldn’t wait to publish this post.

And that clear round was good enough to bump us up a few spots so we could take home some satin!

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Capture

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C got a ribbon and I got Taco Bell- then I took his ribbon #SorryC

And while that was awesome and all, one of the best parts of the day was meeting Emma finally!

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And realizing at the same time that we’re both terrible at taking interesting pictures.

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“What do we do? We dunno.” – Us, when told to do something funny

So looks like C will be heading down to spend some time with me starting this Saturday!

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Still not sure what to do with a plain bay…

 

 

 

 

 

Horse Life, Horse Shows

Professional BN Rider

We all know how long it took for me to eventually get P around a BN, right? ::cough cough:: 2 years ::cough cough::

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I think this was attempt #3?
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FINALLY completing BN

Then I started riding S when P injured himself the FIRST time. And it was sort of a miracle that after only 4 weeks or so, I took him around his very first event at BN (and really only my third).

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Last month I headed up to VA for a weekend of riding ponies with my friend, and got to take her guy out for a spin:

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And after a day of flatting, took him to a little jump clinic where I jumped a few little fences for the first time since October 2018. We made tentative plans for me to come back up to VA in March to compete him at Loch Moy and then possibly bring him back with me to ride while P continues to recuperate.

But I had some serious doubts. I mean…I’d ridden the horse all of 60 minutes or so, not to mention the teensy fact that I’ve done nothing besides w/t/c rehab rides (when I could ride at all) for the last 5 months. Not exactly a professional here, y’all.

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Pretty much sums up all my recent riding history

So I made the decision to get there, ride him Friday & Saturday, then decide. He was already entered under his owner and the office said we could make a last minute rider change.

Here’s a little background on C: he’s 19 (but you’d never know), and my friend has owned him for about 10 years or so- she completed her first BN/N on him, and schooled Training, but said she could never put all the Training phases together to actually compete at the level. She bought a different horse 4 years ago, and C pretty much has sat since then. He briefly came out of retirement in 2016 when a friend tried to show him at BN, but they didn’t get along well, so back into the pasture he went.

So the horse hasn’t been to a show, hasn’t schooled XC, has now jumped exactly ONCE (with me in Feb) in nearly 3 years, and I think I can just saunter around a horse trial?

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Friday I hopped on, my friend set some jumps, and off we went. At this point, I was under the impression that my friend had worked him over fences at least a couple times, so afterwards when I found out she hadn’t jumped him at all, I was actually quite impressed with how he was.

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But he does have the tendency to bulge to the right and get sort of…stuck. He did it a few times off the left lead as I was turning to jumps, and it was a little un-nerving. I’m told that’s one of his quirks, which is totally fine since all horses have their “thing,” but it didn’t exactly inspire confidence that I could steer him around a SJ course.

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Not as fun as jumping

But I figured…YOLO, maybe? I really can’t explain why I decided to go along with competing him, but found myself paying the rider change fee the next day.

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Waiting on some media…we’ll finish this story tomorrow!

Horse Life

Surprise Foot Hole Re-Check

Yesterday I went out to the barn for P’s daily bandage change. But when I cut through the vet wrap and duct tape, half of his uber special shoe flopped down.

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Literally my face when I realized the shoe was no longer attached

So after BO’s husband and I removed the entire shoe…

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BO calls us the “Farrier Dream Team” because we suck at farrier-y things

…I wrapped his stupid shoeless foot and might have gleaned the tiniest bit of pleasure in his obvious soreness walking back to his stall.

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Definitely won’t be doing this today

And P’s just plain old out of luck,  because AGF (Almighty Genius Farrier) had already told BO (who has a horse with a loose shoe) that he was booked solid this week. I do have a text in to him, offering to trailer P to him, but I’m also feeling fairly cold-hearted ATM.

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So I went home and got in the shower with Old Faithful.

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Luckily we have a bench and grab bars in the shower

 

The vet came out earlier today on an emergency call for another horse at the barn, so while she was out and P was barefoot, I had her look at P’s foot, even though she and AGF weren’t supposed to come back until April 1st to re-check and reset the shoe.

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March 4th
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March 20th

All the soft tissue has gone back to the way it should be, which was great to hear. As the hoof sole and wall grow out, it will cover up what you can see, but there’s no more inflammation.

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March 4th
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March 20th

She was surprised at how much growth has occurred in such a short period of time(maybe the Wunderhoof stuff actually works?) and said he should be back in work sooner than we thought.  She said we can skip the re-check on the 1st and just wait another 4 weeks, so that at least saves me some $$.

Now, here’s hoping AGF is able to squeeze P in to get a shoe back on! Until that happens, he’s BACK in the round pen, walking like he’s about to die.

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Horse Life

Lying McLiar Face

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Yes, THIS face

For the first time since August 2018, P is finally back in a pasture. When he was first cleared from stall rest in January, the pastures were so wet that P was assigned to the round pen, lest he slip in the wet grass/mud and reinjure his tendon. Then he tore half his foot off, went back into the stall for 7 days, and then was back in the round pen.

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But BO and I figured this was as good a time as any to get P out into a small pasture, as he’d likely be sore enough thanks to The Foot Hole, and wouldn’t be so inclined to tear around.

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Day 1: GRASS

Which was true. For, ya know, a couple days.

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Day 5: All weight on The Foot Hole

So with one grey TB back in action…

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Looking at the faker through some S ears!

…I’m thinking P can handle a few laps of walking under saddle in the arena.

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Horse Life, Horse Shows

3DayAdventures BlogHop: My Favorite Event

Thanks to 3DayAdventures for some blog content other than hoof holes!

It’s been raining in NC for what seems like 5 nonstop months. Temperatures have fluctuated from 30 to 80 (sometimes in one week), and some days I don’t even MIND that I don’t have a rideable horse because it’s just plain ol’ nasty.

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But with the end of March comes a few things…Trainer B’s return as well as the beginning of show season.

But KC, you might say, your horse has a gigantic hole in his foot.

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That he does, my dears, but it’s looking like this handsome guy will soon be coming my way.

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Not sure what to do with a non-gray, to be honest

Right now the plan is to head up to VA at the end of this month and compete C in a schooling horse trial, then bring him back to NC with me. His owner will be following him down to NC shortly after that, as she heads back to work for Trainer B, and C will stay with me until P is ready to go. Which will probably be early summer, because the second that horse is declared good to go back under saddle, he’ll be heading to Trainer B’s for at least a month. I seriously can’t even with that horse anymore.

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Me to P when he’s cleared

So all hopes for a spring season may not be dashed after all. Which has me thinking about the events I’ve been to as both a rider and a spectator, and which ones I can maybe, just maybe, plan to get to this year.

It was so hard to pick a favorite. I loved going to Virginia HT when Trainer B competed P and really hope to get to compete there myself this year.

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I love galloping up hills and VA’s XC course looked like SO MUCH FUN

I will always be partial to Windridge. Maybe because we’ve won there before…

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#biased

Also because they have a kick ass XC course.

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But I have to say that my favorite among favorites has to be Carolina Horse Park.

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Because this picture came from there, of course!

All around, I just love the venue. The stalls are roomy, and designed to be able to conveniently hang things like saddle racks/bridle racks/hay nets/buckets, etc. The overhangs are great at keeping the rain off ya and are spacious enough to have trunks/hay bales in front of stalls.

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Approved by S
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With posts spaced out perfectly to hang the hammock

Trashcans everywhere that are actually emptied DURING the show, so trash isn’t blowing out by Sunday. Small details like that matter.

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After P stumbled upon some leftover Chick Fil A one time, he made it a mission to go inspect every other garbage can. Because he’s weird.

Another favorite feature is that each stall has it’s own dual electric outlet. Perfect for a fan and a phone charger.

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They have 2 areas for campers/LQs, both of which are about a 45 second drive to the barns. The hookups are far enough apart that no one has to park on top of each other either.

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They partner with a nearby golf cart company, so you can have one delivered for the duration of the show for $45/day.

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Handy for carting the family around

The only thing missing would be showers. If they’d add showers and a real restroom, that’d be perfection.

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My alternative if no one around has an LQ

 

I believe they run only 2 USEA events throughout the year, in addition to Carolina International at the end of March, then from May-November, they host a schooling series called War Horse Event Series.

Timing has never worked out to where I’ve competed in one of their USEA events, but I have attended several of the WHES events and love how well run they all have been. Plus, stabling for Friday-Sunday is only $75 AND you don’t have to clean the stall at the end of the weekend. With a horse like P, there is no better deal than to NOT have to strip the stall.

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Everyone when they glance at P’s stall

But even though the cost for the schooling events is less than recognized, don’t think the competition is easy. It’s a big atmosphere at each of the shows, with all 8 barns being completely filled most months. They typically have around 300 entries per show, and offer HTs through Training and CTs through Advanced. As such, they hire real course designers for both show jumping and XC, and those courses are over the same tracks and jumps as you’ll find in their recognized shows.

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Dressage is always interesting, as they run 6 rings at one time, so keeping your horse focused while there’s a bunch of horns/bells/SQUEAKY TOYS (of course for the ring we usually get put in) sounding off around you can be challenging at times.

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Fine with the squeaky toy
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Melts down when a horse trailer comes down the road next to the ring

Stadium they have two different arenas- one on grass for the little stuff (up to 2’3), and then BN+ in the Century Link arena.

The grass arena always has great footing and is slightly more quieter, which is great for the green horses and/or riders.

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S killing it in his first real jump course

On the other side, the Century Link arena is quite busy with the barns on one end, another side taken up by loudspeakers and tents, and warmup on the other side. The courses are definitely never easy either.

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Ever to my dismay, there is always AT LEAST one in-and-out #nailedit
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When you and your horse both derp hard over rainbow poles
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Expect to see at least one bending line in there as well
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Not to mention related fences that are juuu-ssst far enough apart that you panic a little halfway down the line. This was actually a miracle.

And then there’s XC. While some horse trials I’ve been to never really change up their tracks, at CHP I’ve never seen the start box in the same place. Like stadium, they have two separate areas for the levels: starter (2’3″) and below uses a completely different track/course with BN+ in another.

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“Oh goodie- a combination on XC,” said me NEVER

If you do enough of these WHES events, you can qualify for the championships, which dishes out hefty prize money and goodies.

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The prizes are the same for Green as Grass through Training. INSANE.

And as a cherry on top, they always have at least 2 food trucks onsite, and 2 mobile tack shops. For dinner, the venue is close to town with lots of restaurants to choose from.

It’s just under two hours from me, so I’m hoping to make it there at least once this year, or as many times as is on the schedule.

Of course that depends on, ya know, having a horse to ride.

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Horse Life

And Now We Wait…

WARNING: Some pictures in this post are disgusting.

Both vet and farrier came out yesterday to do x-rays and see if a shoe could get put back on P’s broken foot.

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Yum yum

He walked out of the stall much better than when he went into it a week ago (he hasn’t left it at all and was getting his bandage changes in there), which was a relief, and the vet unwrapped his foot to take a look.

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Barf. The white grainy stuff is a mixture of MSM/sugar, just FYI. The good news is that the pack, bandage, and SMZs have been doing their job in keeping infection away.

Then the vet took x-rays and I held my breath.

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The x-ray showed that no bone was damaged in P’s wild crosstie escapade, which makes his prognosis excellent. The laminae is a little inflamed, which is to be expected, so I’m to continue with the betadine/sugar/MSM applications under his wrap.

Then it was time to see if a shoe could get back on there to help relieve some pressure.

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Dream Team

And after going back and forth with the farrier, who will from now on be referred to as Almighty Genius Farrier (AGF) because he rocks, AGF was able to fashion and attach a shoe to what’s left of the hoof.

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You could clearly see the relief on P’s face when he found he was able to put weight on that leg for the first time in 7 days. The vet and AGF watched him walk up and down the barn aisle and the difference was immediate.

So P will remain on SMZs, bute, and daily bandage changes. He *should* be able to go out in a small paddock or the round pen in the next couple of days. I actually had to ace him after AGF/vet left, because he was like, “Uhhh, no thanks, I’m actually fine now” when I put him back in his stall. BO joked that we should take off the shoe, but I already paid for that sucker, so I said she could just kick the hole if he gets out of line. And I’m only half-kidding, if we’re being honest.

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I’m really not looking forward to changing the bandage from here on out, though. Before, I did it from the bottom of the foot and never made direct eye contact with the exposed soft tissue. Now I have to go through the front and pull the pads through the hole. Which makes me want to gag just thinking about it. Thanks, P.

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At least this is healing up

The vet/AGF will come back out in 4 weeks to do another set of x-rays and reset his special shoe. So in the meantime…we, uh, wait, I guess.

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Not going to lie…I was so nervous to put him back in cross-ties, given what happened the last time he was in here
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But spring is on it’s way so cross-tying is sort of necessary, I guess

As for a new ride, I’m still sort of in limbo. Trainer B wants me to try out this one horse that’s semi-local to me, so that will be happening this coming weekend, weather permitting. Otherwise the tentative plan (work permitting, this time) is to head back to VA at the end of March to catch ride my friend’s horse, C,  in the MDHT Starter Trials at BN, and then bring him home with me. C is the horse I rode when I visited a couple weeks ago, and I really enjoyed him.

We’ll see what happens. In the meantime, I can be found stuffing betadine soaked pads through the hole in my horse’s foot, while furiously rubbing WunderHoof all over what’s left of it and shoving Farrier’s Formula Double Strength pellets down his throat.

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Me to P for the rest of his life