Grace has officially been here for over a week now! And it’s been a pretty busy week…
The farrier came on Monday, the barn owners left for Florida on Wednesday, the vet came on Friday to do teeth, I went through and cleaned out all my trunks/bins/trailer/tack room to get stuff ready to take to the new consignment shop nearby (gotta make room for the Black Friday purchases that have started to arrive), fired up the Cricut to crank out some WTW stuff, I’ve ridden Grace 5 times now, Hillary has come out to ride Henry a few times, and yesterday we went out to a horse show to cheer on some friends. According to my tracker I’ve walked 26 miles in 5 days, with 13 of those being on Saturday and Sunday. It’s been busy. And, of course, not without drama.
I was out in the barn on Thursday poking around and glanced out in the field to see Grace literally standing there on 3 legs. Like… waving a front one around as if it was broken. That’s cool, I didn’t need those extra 5 years on my lifespan anyway. I ran out and found that she had sprung a shoe, twisting it just enough in the process to where the clip was embedded in her white line. I got her into the barn and set about trying to remove the shoe, which… was not easy. It took me a while, with a lot of sweating and cursing. Only two of the eight nails had come loose and the rest of the shoe was EXTREMELY SECURE so getting it off was not a simple task, especially while trying very hard not to damage her foot or take any wall with it. I finally got it off though, and immediately cleaned and flushed out the spot where the clip had gone in, wrapped it with some animalintex, put a boot on it, and texted the farrier. Then marched inside and ordered more/better farrier tools, because – and I cannot stress this enough – EFF THAT SHIT.
She was a little foot sore that afternoon but by the next day she looked 100%, so even though she was still wearing the boot I took her for a short hack. I try to avoid jumping or doing anything particularly strenuous in the boot, because it does make their footfalls a little uneven, but I’ve never had a problem riding Henry in it, so I figured I’d see how Grace did. She handled it totally fine and felt great, so the next day I took her in the ring and did a little flatwork.
She’s still a bit forward and distracted, being in a new place and back in a more regular work schedule, but she’s getting better and better every ride. You can definitely tell there’s a nice horse in there that has had a lot of good training. She’s already earned herself the nickname Mingo (do I call any horse by it’s actual name? Rarely.) because when she wants a treat she folds up one front leg like a flamingo and just stands like that, staring at you. I find it hilarious so it always works.
Hillary also got to jump Henry a little bit, his favorite thing. I love this horse so much, and seeing other people enjoy him only makes me love him more. He’s just the goodest dude and the most golden of eggs, he brings me joy and makes me laugh every day.
He’s already got Hillary trained with the cookie delivery service, too. He requires two when you go get him, one when you get to the crossties, one when you put on his saddle, one when you put on his bridle, one when you dismount, two when you turn him back out. At minimum. Those are the rules, and he made sure she learned it quickly. Hillary has delivered in full, coming every time armed with a big bag of German Horse Muffins, and not even breaking them in half like I do. When she showed up on Sunday he came up to the gate and waited for her to come get him. Guess she’s got the official Henry seal of approval. He also showed her his very best dolphin impression when we were out hacking. What a gentleman.
On Friday Grace got her teeth done, which she was due for. She’s only here for a few months but I figure if I’m going to be asking her to work for me, it’s only fair that she’s taken care of. She’s not so sure that she likes me all that much, with my horseshoes and my dental work and all my riding, and just wait til I clip her. I’m definitely making the barefoot-and-pregnant broodmare life more attractive to her, I think.
Since she had the dental on Friday I rode her in the hackamore this weekend. Boy does she ever feel Irish in a hackamore… it was about as useful as riding her in a halter. It got the job done well enough though and we got rides in on both weekend days. I’ve been utilizing the little hills in the back on the hacking trail to try to help strengthen her stifles a bit, and she seems to really like riding out there. We also did some flatwork in the jump field just so she could get used to the space (it has trees bordering one side that cows are often lurking in, so it can be a bit spooky) so now she’s been ridden on and seen every inch of the property basically.
For everyone who said she looked big… we sticked her and she’s 16.1. Not particularly tall, just really deep and wide in the heartgirth so she takes up a lot of leg.
After we hacked on Sunday we drove out to Pine Hill for their horse trials to watch some friends go. I feel like the off season is always the best time of year around here, with lots of people moving up a level and young horses making their debut. This show was no different, and everybody had a good day even if it was a bit warm for December.
We’ve already got more riding plans for this week and this weekend, hopefully the weather cooperates and, uh, the farrier gets out here to put Grace’s shoe back on. I’ve also got some fun packages arriving this week that will merit some discussion I think, and I’m hoping to have a post ready tomorrow about Grace’s “family tree”, so maybe I can actually keep things interesting on the blog front.
Hope everybody had a good weekend! How is it already December 6th??? Time flies.