I swear....This has been a horrible week for losses. My husband's friend, another club member from the other sided of the state the very next day, a friend's beloved horse, and the tragic loss of 19 firefighters in Arizona. Thank you everyone for the condolences for Parrot.
Around home, it's more of the same...try and beat the heat to get horses worked and continuously move water around to keep everything from baking to a crisp.
We had a sudden spike in temperatures last week and it greatly affected Moon's breathing. I was glad I had pretty much decided to stay home from that big barrel race last weekend. It took me a few days to get him righted again, but he's back to normal. Up until now, he has been doing great on just his supplements, but when the summer heat sets in, he seems to have a real intolerance for hay. So, I switched him to mostly bermuda pellets and his ultra fiber pellets. The one flake of hay he does get per feeding is sprayed with water...he won't eat it if it has been soaked...so I have to settle for spraying it....and religiously spraying his pen to keep the dust settled. Most of the time he's out on pasture during the day and only up at night but that doesn't seem to help, so I daresay that it's more the heat that bothers him and weakens his immune system than just the hay, but there is not much I can do about the temps, so I am just treating him as if he is purely allergic to hay.
After having to take it easy for a couple of days, we have made huge strides in the riding department. It took a lot of work to get Moon settled down on the barrel pattern again, but he's there. I set up a bunch of different things; my pole bending poles, ground poles and cones around the pattern and every time he gets overly excited and doesn't want to work the barrel pattern calmly, we ease off of the barrel pattern and I work him harder on something else. When he relaxes, we go back to the barrel pattern. Three days of that and he decided to chill.
The little sorrel is doing okay. He's still not 'sound' and mostly I am just working him to see if I can get him 'sound enough'. I have upped his training routine and made his riding sessions much shorter...but way more intense. Any time I can, I try to ride him twice a day. He seems to be coming around and holding up better this way.
The Big Bay has been getting rode...With the aid of a foot-rope. I kinda want to post pictures, but am a little worried that someone will see/read about it and try it on their own and that little get-up is not something that anyone should ever 'just try'. However, I am riding the horse on my own and he is not blowing up with me. But something is not right with the way this horse travels. He has the most uncomfortable herky, jerky motion and it feels like his is crouching on his hind-end. And I don't mean like a bronc that is just waiting to blow up...I mean totally abnormal movement. I highly suspect he is severely misaligned in his poll and has been since he was very young. Problem is, I don't have a good chiro for that and until I find one...The Big Bay isn't going to get much better.
Someone that is improving rapidly is Buddy, the abandoned TB Megan picked up in AZ...
He's gaining weight on a daily basis and his poor ground manners have almost entirely disappeared. Very little of it was due to 'training'. I had to get after him one time for being kicky and I occasionally have to remind him that I am not a rubbing post, but other than that, the majority of his poor behavior was due to nothing more than starvation and ulcers. He's a whole lot better under saddle as well. Much quieter and willing to walk. I haven't gotten his teeth done yet, but since he has been gaining so well on a normal diet, I have been able to procrastinate on that. Right now, the only struggle we are having is keeping shoes on his front feet. The poor horse's hoofwall is still so thin that every week or so a shoe falls off and I have to go get it nailed back on. The farrier is hesitant to use clips because he is afraid it will pull a chunk of hoofwall off and then we will be screwed. His soles are super thin as well, so barefoot is not an option. I am wondering if I might have to buy him a set of boots until we get a more healthy hoofwall grown out. It's just going to take some time to undo the years of neglect he suffered. He is a sweet, old horse though and I like him a lot. I told Meg to buy him to fix up for re-sale, but I don't think he's going anywhere soon...if ever. I'm kind of planning on just fixing him up and turning him into a horse for the local jackpots next year. LOL.
Happy 4th of July everyone! Stay safe out there...It's CRAZY this year!!! Moon and I are off to start our little 4th of July rodeo run. I opted to stay close to home and hit some of the CPRA rodeos vs. entering any of the big Pro rodeos. I'm excited. We have been working hard and I know we are back on track. Now it's just time to put the practice to work. :-D.