Friday, February 27, 2015

Snug pony Grumpy pony

Stella's neck cover came!


It seems to be good quality.  I am a little bit confused by the fasteners though, if anyone can help me out.  When I spoke with Schneiders, they said this one would work on my Schneiders blanket.  It came with 4 D rings but only 3 carabiner clips.  I thought one was missing so I slapped on one of my own.

However, when I got to the barn I found out that Stella's blanket only had 3 places to attach the neck cover.  So I ended up clipping both middle Ds on the neck cover to the D ring over her withers on her blanket.

Is that how it's supposed to work?

It seems to fit well, although Stella is busy trying to remove it.  I also tried attaching the little velcro flap at the top of the cover to her halter, but it tugged on the halter pretty good when she put her head down so I left it off.


Now for the weather to turn 50 so I don't have to use the thing I just bought.  Please?

Friday, February 20, 2015

Shiny horse?

I've been doing a lot of googling and trolling of Smartpak as well as other websites looking at coat/hoof supplements.   In general I'm not a huge believer in supplements being terribly effective for things like soundness unless they have proven track record.  I'd much rather spend my money on injections, which do have a scientific background.

I'm curious but slightly skeptical over things like coat supplements, although they are very tempting for the new owner of a black horse.

A boarder in my barn uses Black As Knight.  I've done research on it, and the main ingredient is paprika  (a source of copper).  So to save money you can just feed paprika.  However, it looks like it only works if your horse has a  mineral deficiency, and then only when the hair is growing in.


I've heard really good things about Flax seeds, they are 40% fat and are a natural source of omega 3 fatty acids.  Adding fat to a horse's diet improves the skin, hair coat, body condition, and can help calm the horse.  Flax also has some research reducing sweet itch.



So, if whole flax is a good thing, what about a supplement containing flax plus other stuff?  I'm looking at Omega Horseshine.  It contains copper and other vitamins to address a mineral deficiency, biotin to address hoof quality, fat to help with shine and weight,  and in addition helps with itching caused by allergies, and is supposed to help arthritic horses move better.



Thoughts?

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Frigid

I'm in the middle of both panicking about not making any progress with Stella and avoiding riding because it's too bloody cold.  I did feel a little better when I realized I've had her barely 3 weeks but spring will eventually be here and thus the start of show season and we need to do things like cantering and jumping.

Stella has been getting turned out daily now so she's getting some exercise and she's struggling to find her place in the herd. She's also struggling to find her place with me.  Who's in charge?  What can she get away with?

She refused to pick up a hind foot last week then a day later not only picked it up before I got to it, but waived it around in the air.  One night she was cantering around me in tiny circles while I struggled to attach the lunge line, the other night I had to pick up a whip to get her to keep going.

After having no success getting her to stand still in the crossties I have started carrying a metal shedding blade which makes an excellent TWONGG!!!! noise when you smack her with it.

To Stella's credit she is a quick learner and doesn't appear to be going back to any of the bad habits she's been running through.

In other news, she's now the proud owner of two blankets!  She's currently wearing her midweight, and her sheet arrived Friday in the mail crammed into a teeeny tinnny box.  Not that it's warm enough to wear it!


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Endurance here we come?

I've been mildly searching for a good bargain on an endurance type saddle.  I don't want to spend a lot on something I don't intend on using a lot, I want something light weight, with english rigging, and something that fits, so the search has been long.  I'm not in any hurry as it's more of a "want" than a "must have."

I stumbled across this odd man out in a local english tack store, thoughts?


Saturday, February 7, 2015

Wheeee


Friday night I was looking forward to riding my freshly clipped horse.  Since Stella isn't getting turned out I have been turning her out in the indoor while I do stalls, then lunging her before I get on.

The above picture accurately documents how Stella felt about being partially naked, the weather, and her confinement.  It was impressive.  After 20 minutes of bucking, running, and snorting on the lunge line I got on her and rode at the walk to cool her steaming self down.

Then I cancelled my planned trail ride for Today.  Bummed but I'd rather not see if she bucks on the trail.

I don't think I'll see that kind of behavior next week, especially if she gets a chance to get turned out.  She is girthy and I've heard of horses reacting violently to the cold air on their naked belly the first time they get clipped.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Crimes Against Equines

I wanted to clip Stella, she's so very hairy and out of shape and she gets soaking wet after 10 minutes on the lunge line.  I decided to do an Irish clip to target the affected areas without taking too much hair off.


Stella wasn't terribly cooperative.  She hasn't been getting turned out for several reasons, and I very highly doubt she has ever been body clipped before.  So, I have an excuse.  

Here are a couple examples of nice Irish clips.  I like to leave the head unclipped because I'm not concerned about having a neat head in the winter.



Sadly, Stella now looks like this


Sigh.  She hates me.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Lunging Aids

Do you use lunging aids to help teach your horse a connection to the bit or to encourage them to work over their topline?  Is lunging an important part of schooling or reschooling a horse on how to work correctly?  I've been doing some lunging with Stella to work on her connection with the bit.  I'll probably quit lunging her when she's incorporated into the herd and getting turned out, but right now it's helpful to warm her up and take some of the edge off so I might as well make it productive.  

So far I've tried a pair of elastic side reins.  Did not seem effective but I need to try them again and shorten them up more.  It's hard finding appropriate sized side reins for cob sized horses.


I also tried a neck stretcher on Friday.  She seemed to respond to this pretty well, I got some good stretching moments.


I've had good results with vienna reins as well but I don't have any right now.  I like these because they aren't fixed.


I had really good results with a kavalkade lunging aid when I was working with Nikki.


Thoughts?

October HT wrap up

My BIG MOVE UP at the October show was a big fat fail.  This is me, dismounting off of Stella in the middle of a massive XC melt down...