Sunday, August 10, 2008


Bad Kids in Class

Tucker wants to eat the chart now. He will half-heartedly nose a letter, but he'd rather grab the cardboard in his mouth and chomp on it.

Ok, so if he were a kid in class, maybe he's bored? Or else he just doesn't understand the work and is clowing around to cover up?

This time, Toby cooperated and may have spelled "Tuck." He did touch the chart in the right places in the right order, so I will, for now, qualify that as total success.

Chance nosed the "C" to start his name and then just stood there. Finally, after a bit of consideration, he nosed the "H." Then, he wouldn't even try until I got some treats and told him he could have one for each letter he picked. In very little time, he touched close to the "A," the "N," then the "C." The "E" seemed to puzzle him for a while, but then he hit the chart in the general area, so I gave him the treat.

Oh, yes, I rode today. It clouded over, threatening to rain, but a nice breeze picked up so it was quite pleasant. I warmed Tucker up with some basic walk, trot, canter, and then decided to ride a facsimile of the Olympic eventing test. Actually, aside from the flying changes, we weren't too far off. Tuck's trot lengthenings leave something to be desired, but the shoulder-in, half passes at both the trot and the canter were not bad. The counter canter half circle was just fine and he did some single trot stride lead changes. I told him we'd scored a phenomenal 90% on the test so he was quite pleased.

Then, since he was dressed in the bug armor, I took him out for a five minute walk in the woods. We just did the back of the barn trail loop. I'm glad I didn't risk more as towards the end, some of the flies found his legs and he was getting a bit bouncy. Still, it was cooling so it was a good little ride.

I saddled up Chance first. He had scraped his nose on the arena gate when I was riding Tucker--he was trying to open it and had the chain in his mouth. Somehow he cut himself. So I took the noseband off his bridle to ride him without.

He was just fine. We had a nice session of trot work with him reaching nicely for the bit. Then, I cantered on the right lead. He wasn't wonderful to the bit, but much improved. But when I brought him back to the trot, he felt very uneven. I don't know if he stepped on something, or banged himself, or--I hope not--hurt that back leg muscle thing that laid him up before. I dismounted, took him into the barn, checked all four feet and found nothing. Then I took him back out on the lunge and watched him go. He may have shown a very slight unevenness but nothing too significant.

After I finished up with Chance I went out to the pasture with a carrot to simply catch Toby and then let him go. He saw me coming and began the "catch me if you can" game right off. It took me about five minutes to convince him the carrot would be quite tasty--all this while fending off a very persistent Tucker. I slid the halter on him, walked him about ten feet and then let him go. He is in constant need of remedial catch training. *sigh*

I went to the pool for a quick swim as the clouds gathered. The lifeguards were keeping a close eye on the sky as thuderstorms were in the forecast. But I did manage 10 full laps (20 lengths) and a nice hot shower to get the chlorine off.

Back home, I heard thunder starting to roll in. I called the Boys in from the pasture to put them in the barn with some feed, water, and hay. Sure enough, not long after, the storms started up and they've been coming in and out ever since.

From the looks of the forecast, my little herd will be in for the night. Rain is OK, but thunder and lightning? No way.


  1. Toby is quite untrustfull. Has he always been that way?
    Is he very dominant? He might not see you as a herd-leader???

    Eventing Dressage test ... You had fun ^-^

    Have you tried to video yourself when you ride? I woudl love to see you riding.

    I tried to put my video and photos, but blogger keeps crashing :-(

  2. Toby has always been spooky. When I had Kenny Harlow work him for me, he not only was scared, but struck out when he was trapped. Kenny said I needed to be careful with him when he was frightened.

    He has gotten better over the years, but will still spook.

    He is dominant, for sure. I see him as a partner rather than my being the total boss, so it is mutual respect. He is a gentleman to handle and very safe to work around. His father was a fantastic racehorse, but very dangerous to handle. Some of his offsrping inherited that. Toby is one of the good ones.

  3. Why won't they let you swim in the rain Jean?

    I'm laughing about your post, it was great fun.


  4. teaching them to spell - well, why not! it'll keep their brains engaged if the weather turns against riding!