Sunday, February 13, 2011

Okay, maybe lame mare is NOT lame?

Amber, you never cease to amaze me.

So we threw some bell boots on her hind feet. I didn't try her without them, stupidly, but she was remarkably sound with them. It's apparently not an issue of sensitive tissue, but just the fact that she's so close to it. She DID have a heel bruise, that was the limping the other day. Now she's just got tender toes.

So we rode. No limping. A little attitude though. But she's been off 2 weeks and it was windy yesterday. And they were working with this little 4 year old who has some issues who was bucking and carrying on right by the arena in the round pen. Yeah.

Steering was gone, and she was not stretching down like she had been. Then she wanted to race through my contact. She trotted SO fast, it was honestly faster than a canter. So I'm like, know what? I can post this fast. Hell, I can SIT this even if I have to, so you go right ahead and let me know when you get tired of being stupid. I just posted with the crazy trot and talked to her in a soft voice. She eventually calmed down, but she did want to race by certain areas of the arena. We had a few little canters. One very good bit, and some very crappy bit where she was a little..."up" in the back end. ;)

At the end, I figured out I have to do what I had to do with Jack to her: Get WAY too much pressure in my hands and put that inside leg into her hard. And then she was like "FINE, I'll collect". She stretched into my hands, head went down, and I let her be done on that good note.

I'm just going to walk trot today. I really do think dressage and combined training is going to be our niche. She just doesn't do well with other horses in an arena. And I don't either...we are loners, what can I say? Perhaps it's really something we both need to work harder to accept and get through well, but it's hard when both horse AND rider don't like to ride with other horses and riders.

I went to Tractor Supply to see if they had anything I was going to buy from State Line on sale, and sure enough, they did.

I got a gallon of fly spray for the same price, which will save me on the weight of shipping. I got some navy polo wraps that were on sale for $7. I also got some bell boots for Amber, since it appears they may come in handy during the healing process of her toes. $6 for those, they were 50% off. I got some brown bands for her mane. A couple of rolls of vetrap. Always good to have in case of an injury, and I will need to wrap her dock to flatten the hair before shows. I mean, it's shipping I don't have to pay for on this stuff I would have gotten any way, and all of it was cheaper or the same price.

And then I got her some hoof supplements. 6oz day, so I'm prescribing that she get 3oz am/pm so she gets a good balanced dose in her system like that over 24 hours. It was $20, not sure how long it will last. It's hard to gauge and it's been a while since I've had to give supplements. I am hoping it will spark her hoof growth (which is slow) and make harder hooves too. Mostly looking for hoof growth, because we need to fix these back toes. But harder hooves would take longer to wear down, and I am expecting some rubbing still while we are trying to correct the problem.

There are a number of things that could be causing the dragging. Maybe it was too much toe to begin with, and now it's a bad habit she's gotten into? Maybe it's just the unbalanced feet are hard to move around with and she's getting even lazier because of it? Maybe she's just plain lazy and needs some muscles in her hind end.

Whatever it is, we will figure it out. I know I sound like a broken record, but I am avoiding shoes at all costs. If I have to duct tape her toes, I will!


  1. Glad to hear Amber was sound so you could ride. Maybe the hoof supplement will help.

    As to riding with others in the arena...don't avoid it altogether as most of the warm-up arenas and dressage/combined training competitions can get pretty busy. You will still need to cope there.

  2. Sounds like you had a pretty interesting ride. That's a lot of horse to ride down.

    I agree with Jean, you will need to learn to cope with traffic for warm-ups. They set the whole tone for your actual ride and can be pretty rocky if you are intimidated in the warm-up arena