dancing horses

dancing horses

Saturday, July 4, 2015

In Which Carmen is Lazy and I'm Happy

Yesterday was a hot day. At least hot for a person living on the atlantic coast in Canada- it was 27 degrees (Celsius) when I got home from work. I brought the horses in, fed them and let them chill in the barn for a bit. I then got Carmen ready and we headed up to the ring.

It was clear that she was feeling warm and tired. We didn't spend much time on the lunge before I put on her bridle and got on. She stood completely still while I mounted. Both of us were pretty mellow. She gave one big spook but letting my legs drop around her has become automatic so it wasn't a big deal.  She did everything I asked without fuss. She then started to get distracted so I started doing one of my favourite exercises: spiralling in on a circle and then leg yielding out. I started at the walk and I felt her attention shift back to me. After a few times at walk I picked up a trot and asked again. The first few times I asked for a leg yield out she didn't know what I wanted. I simply let her figure it out and then gave her praise. The second time we did it she responded well. As we came back to the 20 metre circle as I gave the aid for one more step over she picked up her right lead canter soft as you would like. I realized that the aid was a bit confusing so I let her carry on and praised her for listening to my aid and for not bucking into it. We cantered a few circles and I brought her back to trot by just still my seat. I halted and dismounted.

All in all it was 20 minutes. But I've been riding a lot lately and there didn't seem to be a good reason to carry on and make her tired and sore. She was quite happy to follow me back to the barn.

Which brings me to my second topic: Grass.

I have too much of it and they are not eating it down. I did not realize how much grass Steele ate but Irish and Carmen are not big eaters. Ed mowed the fields this week to cut down the tall grass. I love how it looks when it's mowed. Because the horses are hiding from the heat and bugs in the barn in the afternoon I've decided to let them out again after supper for a couple hours. This will save my hay for winter and be good for them.

Except that they won't go.

Yesterday I let them out and the two of them simply exchanged stalls.
So I grabbed Irish and led him out to the grass. They stayed out for about 30 minutes and then came back down.
Carmen: What's she doing?
Irish: I don't know. I think she's gone senile.
Me: Go eat some grass!
Irish: but it's evening and we don't go out in the evening.
Me: I'm trying something new. 
Irish: But I don't like 'new'. I thought I was clear on that.
Me: It's good for you! 
Carmen: I'm pretty sure that I nap inside at this time. 
Me: sigh. 

I shut the stall doors to keep them out. I could hear Carmen trying to open hers. I can hear the two of them muttering to each other.
I then saw Carmen at the third stall- I opened the top door for air flow and she was trying to push the bottom door open to get in the barn that way.
Carmen: hey Irish, I think we can get in this way! 
Me: Stop that! 
Carmen (batting eyes): but we're outside and we're supposed to be in. 

So then I grab the lunge whip and encourage them back to the pasture. I then shut the gate behind them to keep them away from the barn.

I left them for another hour and then let them back to the barn.
Irish: FINALLY! You really have lost it you know. 

They will get used to this, I'm sure. Just in time for them to be ticked off when I stop it in the fall.

before we mowed. they are not making a dent in it

1 comment:

  1. They are creatures of habit, aren't they! We have the opposite problem -- no grass. We only have it for a few months in late winter and early spring. I shouldn't be surprised that you stalked my ride on InterDressage -- afterall, I did stalk Carmen on the InterNet when you were cosidering her. You should consider doing some Starter or walk-trot rides with Carmen; its a great way to get feed back.


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