Sunday, March 18, 2012

Pony Rides

I've decided to give Bud some time off till Ben gives the ok on his eye.  I don't want to do anything that could cause the ulcer to get worse, and damage the eye further.  It did look a lot better today, almost fully open with very little discharge.  He's getting better about having the meds put in; I was able to do it by myself this morning without having someone else hold him.

I free lunged Zoe today before I got on.  As soon as I let her loose in the arena she peed.  She must feel pretty comfy here.  She didn't seem phased by anything, so I took her to the cross ties to saddle up.  We had a good curry season; she's shedding in weird patches.
The darker hair is her winter coat.  In some places I was able to pull the hair out with my hands.  She's pretty tiny and petite.  Big change from both my large boys.  Height wise she's about 15-15.1, so same as Buddy, but she's a lot narrower and not nearly as heavily built.  I had to borrow a friend's 44in girth.  None of mine (48,50,52) fit her. 

She was bit lazy and I had to thump her pretty good with my heels to get her to trot.  I think I'll have to wear spurs with her.  She likes to travel downhill and be pretty heavy on her front end, but was surprisingly light in my hand.  We worked on walk/trot transitions trying to motivate her and get her to start using her hind end.  She's going to be good for my equitation; if I get too far forward with my upper body it feels like I'm going to fall down on her neck.  Good motivation to keep my shoulders back!

After I put her away, I decided to hop on Phoenix.  There was a showmanship lesson going on in the indoor, and while it's been cold and rainy the past week there was a nice sun break so I took Phoenix outside.  He felt a lot better, still stiff but coming forward nicely.  We did some light trot work then went into the canter.  I tried to stay in a light half seat to let him stretch out his back, and boy did he feel good!  This was our 4th ride in a year, and except for the stiffness, it felt like he hadn't had any time off.  He really wanted to work.

I decided to canter across the diagonal line and ask for a simple change.  I was curious to see if he would try a flying change, as his were almost automatic before he was retired.  Literally a stride after I turned him across the diagonal I felt him gather his haunches and he gave me the change.  He tried  to buck and take off (like I said before, he was feeling good!), but he's not quite that agile yet.  I stopped him and walked for a moment. It felt great to know that every thing's still there after all this time!  We ended our work by doing some shoulder in and leg yields at the trot.  

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