Thursday, 23 September 2010

Trying so hard to please

Grace had a tough day yesterday. Gave lesson to someone not familiar with riding by weight and got horribly confused.  Poor love gets very upset if she thinks she has made a mistake  It doesn't matter if actually everything is ok, if Grace thinks 'it' is wrong then she has a bit of a panic.  But full credit to rider for not flipping out in every sense.

Today, lunging to warm up prior to a quick pootle round the yard she got her legs out of sequence, and naturally (for her), because she had made a mistake, she had a little panic.

I find it terribly sad that this bright, intelligent, very able little horse gets so worried.  I can't help but feel it must be a learnt behaviour.  We are working very hard to help her unlearn it, and she is getting better, but it is still very sad.

On a happier note she is enjoying her little hacks and even the sessions in the arena.  Still completely hooked on milk thistle, so we go out for a walk every morning so she can stuff herself with it.

My dearly beloved previous horse taught me very well that I had to stay in balance and 'walk the hips' or she wasn't going anywhere.  Very polite, but firm, she just stood until I had literally got my 'rear in gear'.

Grace is benefiting from this education - I know I get a lot of funny looks as I do my best rice pudding x jelly wobble, but it keeps Grace happy.  As Stunt Man has commented, she is a little ball of india rubber, bouncy, flexible and full of life.  Too much talent to try and bottle it with a rigid back and stiff hips.

Grace conditioning her hooves on limestone chippings

Friday, 10 September 2010

One more step in the right direction

Grace is pretty relaxed in the indoor school.  But I normally only take her in there on her own, for a bit of a loosen up and a roll.

We are cautious about using any school with other horses - not because of the horses, but because if the handler of the other horse gets aggressive Grace gets very upset.

Today Grace, Stunt Man and Aunt decided to give a bit of ridden work in the indoor a whirl.  And there was another horse in there too!

I am happy to report that all went well.  Grace as always really got into the work and focused on what she was doing.  One day, hopefully, she will understand that if one of her 'Trustees' is with her we won't let her get hurt (if we can help it).

All three finished the session, slightly sweaty, but smiling :-)

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Six weeks round up

So big lesson - stick with what you know and don't let your horse down by not following your instincts.

Made Grace very poorly by trying out new 'wunder' products on her. Learnt the hard way that Grace does best on the plain EPSM diet she has been on for months. I think the products themselves are actually very high quality and probably fine for an 'easier' horse though.

So the poor love has had about 4 weeks of misery and then two weeks of recovery. But she has come back bouncing and in a forgiving mood.

The 'Stunt Guy' took her for a bit of a blast today and they both came back grinning from ear to ear, so that made us all happy. Grace is great, you can really let her rip and then she will come back to a quiet walk as though she is really a beach donkey. Mind you with some of the things she does with her ears, she sometimes looks like a donkey.

Video below - not the best as taken on my phone, but I think you will get the idea :-)