Thursday, June 05, 2008

Short Time on the Long Line

Two on a Circle

I had to go back to school tonight to see a student performance, so my time was limited.

The ring was pretty soggy with a number of puddles from yesterday's rain. So I decided to lunge.

As ever, Chance came first to be caught so I worked him first. He has improved remarkably on the lunge line, willingly moving nicely forward at all three gaits in both directions.

Tucker was next. He is a bit lazy out there so I just let him warm up at a slow trot and ended the trot session with some more vigorous work. His canter is always interesting. The left lead is definitely stronger than the right. He was carrying himself well up on the left. On the right, he doesn't hold himself as well and, he has a tendancy to cross canter. He sort of takes a one skip stride, trot move with the left hind and "zap," he's on the right lead in front and the left lead in back. Tonight, for the first time, I made a strong correction immediately both with my voice and with the rein. He caught on quickly with his body and brain connecting to quickly correct himself.

This just confirms my belief that he needs to build up his strength in that right hind. Counter canter with inside bend is a good exercise as are many many half halts and transitions to trot and back up on that lead. Time and effort should make a big difference.

Had to laugh when I got home again tonight after the concert. Tuck and Toby were standing forlornly at the locked arena gate. I had closed it in anticipation of forcast thunderstorms so they could not get out to the open, hilly pasture. Chance was nowhere to be seen, but all three fence rails at the gate were knocked down. (These rails were not so securely nailed in, I fear.) Now, essentially this meant that the only barricade between the arena and paddock was about nine inches of fallen fence rails, and obstacle quite easy to step over. I will presume that Chance, being the most creative of the three, had figured that out and gone out to the pasture to graze.
Meantime, the two big boys, entirely repspectful of the concept of "fence" simply could not wrap their minds around either jumping or simply stepping over the fallen rails.

As soon as I opened the gate, they quite eagerly headed out, probably to meet with the third member of the team. Of course, it was dark, so I am only surmising, but it surely did look suspicious.

Oddly enough, I remember Russell, even as a very experienced jumper, stopped in his tracks by one fence rail left up in the fence line at the height of only about ten inches.

Strange and amusing. Three horses I've known--and I think PJ did something similar--that truly believe a fence is supposed to keep them on the other side.


  1. Are you sure Chance wasn't carrying a Jemmy?


  2. If I understand that term correctly, I wouldn't have been surprised. He seems to be able to find all kinds of "tools" to take things apart. Probably has a crowbar (jemmy) stashed in the barn somewhere.

  3. Chance is a character isnt he:)
    Hope he doesnt make a habit out of it Polo when through a spell of pushing and sitting on fences years ago I wasnt popular by that YO I can tell you!