While part of the weekend was spent getting paint for my jumps and riding Henry, I also made some time to mess with Presto and do some stalking. I have made a bit of a hobby of seeking out and following all the Mighty Magic offspring I can find, especially in the US, (because I’m a creeper) and this weekend there were 3 showing at Pine Top, with 2 of them doing their first Advanced. One finished 3rd and one finished 5th.
It’s fun to see their videos on social media (do I follow several people just because they have MM’s? Maybe…) and go look at my dorky little nugget in the backyard. I wonder what Presto would think of his brethren and all those big jumps.
Last week I bought a $16 roll of extra heavy resistance band to play around with, and I figured that my best option for guinea pig was Presto. He’s level headed and relatively unflappable, and has had enough desensitization to where I’m pretty sure I could wrap him up entirely in a tarp and he wouldn’t bat an eye. If I’m gonna be messing with flapping straps and tightening things around a horse’s butt, I trust him to stay chill about it more than Henry (side note: this is the beauty of having one you’ve raised yourself).
I brought Presto in, brushed him, tacked him up, and then started messing with the roll. Naturally I dropped it, unrolling it entirely underneath him, accidentally left one end flapping in the breeze, got it stuck wound around one hind leg… it was 6 yards of chaos. But Presto just stood there, unfazed, while I sorted my shit out, got it cut to size, and figured out how I wanted to attach it. Gold star for the baby horse.
I just had him walk around me on the lunge line while I made adjustments until I was satisfied with it, then I asked him to trot a few circles each way. He was, all in all, relatively unimpressed with my ghetto invention. I’ve got a feeling Henry will have many more opinions about it when I make his, but luckily now I have a better plan of attack at least.
After I was done tinkering with the band, I untacked Presto and took him back out to the front corner of the property where you can kinda see the cows that he had a meltdown about last weekend. He sat there staring out into the distance for a couple minutes, but quickly lost interest. I’m starting to think Henry fed him some kind of horsey ghost story about evil Moo Demons and that’s where the sudden bovinophobia came from, but I don’t have any proof of those allegations.
And yes, he’s finally wearing the fancy navy leather halter I bought for him over a year ago. At first it was so big that the crown ended up sliding like halfway down his neck, even on the tightest holes. Just to get it on him this weekend I had to let it out a hole on each side. He looks cute in it though, even if you can’t really tell that it’s navy.
After we were done ogling the cows I put him back out with his friend, did a little bit of in-hand stuff with JB, and then went to clean the barn. As I was stuffing baling twine in a trash bag I had a stroke of genius (or maybe just a stroke) and had an idea for a new toy for Presto. I know that historically he’s been a fan of jugs, especially if they have a few rocks in the them for extra noise. And I know that he also loves holding onto ropes, since he puts every lead rope, crosstie, and lunge line in his mouth. I decided to try braiding the baling twine into a rope around the handle of the jug. It was literally a toy made of trash, plus a few pebbles for chaos.
But did he like it? Well… judge for yourself.
OF COURSE HE LIKED IT. He loves trash, he loves noise… there’s no world in which it was possible that he wouldn’t like it. He made a game out of dropping it over the fence and then pulling it back in. Naturally the other horses all hate it, although they generally find it less offensive than the ball.
I probably need to stop buying/making toys for the baby horse, this is a slippery slope. It’s just… far more entertaining than it should be.
17 thoughts on “Gold Star for the Baby Horse”
AHAHAHA that toy. I am creating a tetherball for Grif tonight and hadn’t even thought of using baling twine! Oohhh the ideas…
Also, was planning to try the band system but hadn’t thought of using a resistance band. Amazon for the win! I really owe my UPS guy a gift for his daily deliveries…
Yeah I was willing to invest $20 for 2 bands (one permanently sized to each horse, so I don’t have to mess with them) to this experiment, but not so convinced of the benefits to want to spend $300 on the actual system. Craftier people could DIY I saddle pad with buckles and make a much fancier get up if they wanted, for relatively little money. You just have to find the extra strong bands.
Do you have any pro tips for finding names of actively competing offspring of a certain sire? There is one that I’d like to start stalking…
If they’re upper level you can search the USEF database by sire name and find everything USEF has for that stallion. If they’re competing internationally they’re usually entered in the pedigree databases like Sporthorse data or HorseTelex or rimondo.
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Please do a follow up post on the bands! I like the idea behind them, but didn’t want to lay out $$ for the fancy set up. Your set up looks to be more my style.
He’s the most entertaining baby horse on the planet. Please do not stop giving him things to play with.
If Presto did develop into being capable of going advanced (or even intermediate), is that something you’re interested in riding? Or would you let someone else take him on? Or would you stick to prelim with him and stay his rider?
I heard someone say recently that their bravery grows or shrinks depending on the set of ears they’re looking between. I completely agree with that. What I’m up for depends entirely on the horse I’m sitting on.
The stretchy band is totally new to me. Paso Fino trainers use a retrancha (sp?) to encourage the horse to step under itself, but what is the purpose of the band? After 60 years of horses, something completely new! Who’da thunk it!
There is a lot of info about the idea behind it here… http://equicoreconcepts.com/system.html
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Another vote to request a post about the stretchy band and how you set it all up! 😀
Bought roll of band and some carabiners. Knotted carabiner to one end of band. Stretched around horse and cut band roughly to size. Knotted to other carabiner. Adjusted knots/tightness as needed. LOL
It was pretty simple. The equiband website kind of gives you an idea of placement and tightness.
The trash toy is awesome, don’t ever stop making them!
Love that head shop of Presto, so handsome!
Is it me or are there similarities in the canter of Presto and his half brother?
Another thumbs up for the trash toy!
I’ve been wanting to try out the resistance band system, totally dig your DIY! Do you have a link to the band you purchased? Did you go with a light, medium or heavy band?