July 13-19

I didn’t get to ride every day this past week, and I may not have time to ride Monday morning, which sucks. But that’s next week’s business. This post is about last week.

OuchBy the time I got out to the barn last Sunday afternoon, it was after 2:00. I wasn’t planning to do anything other than groom Skipper, treat his toe cracks, and give him some carrots.

But poor Dante had a loose shoe twisted around on his right front, and the outside clip was digging into his hoof. So of course he was really lame, poor guy!

I texted his owner about it and managed to (finally) get the shoe off and his foot in an epsom salt soak. That’s really the only thing I knew to do for it. He was actually pretty good about keeping his foot in the tub.

Dante's Hurty HoofHe had to get his hoof wrapped up and stay in his stall overnight, which I’m sure he wasn’t happy about. But the good news is that the farrier came the next day, and Dante was sound when I rode him Tuesday. So hopefully he won’t develop an abscess or anything.

Monday morning Skipper had his first visit from the chiropractor. I’ve been keeping an eye on him all week to see if I can notice a difference. I know he won’t magically be sound or anything. At this point we’re really just trying to help him be as comfortable as possible.

The chiropractor warned me that he might look worse the next day, much like acupuncture, and he did look more stiff to me on Tuesday and Wednesday.

He knows I'm here Barn aisle vacuum duty Chillin' out in the barn aisle

He’s usually a bit stiff when I first lead him out of his stall, but some days he’s more so than others, and then it typically takes him longer to walk out of it. Thursday and Friday he looked a little less stiff at first and seemed quicker to loosen up.

When I led him out of his stall Saturday afternoon, he was still stiff, but he moved with more energy. This could be because the it rained and the weather cooled off, giving us very pleasant temperatures for the past couple of days. Or maybe his visit from the chiropractor helped him. I guess he’ll need another chiro session to find out.

Tuesday I got to ride Arty, who was really good, and Dante, who was sound, thank goodness. Arty and I practiced some flatwork, and I hacked Dante around the fields. There was some rain the night before, which helped the ground not be hard as concrete so we got to trot and canter out in the open.

Dante Hacking While the Pasture Horses Graze Enjoy Your Grazing Hey Guys!

Wednesday I pulled Dante’s mane, and he looks so good now! It’s amazing how much difference the details make. I ended up pulling Spot’s mane as well after I rode Dante Thursday morning. I took photos of them so show off their manes, but they’re not very good. The lighting in Dante’s stall wasn’t great, and Spot was too busy begging for attention to keep his head still.

Dante  Spot

My new helmet arrived Wednesday afternoon, so I spent a few minutes Thursday morning taking selfies like a middle school girl. No offense to middle school girls, I just notice that they love doing the selfie thing, quite often.

New Helmet Silly Selfie New Helmet Selfie

My old helmet was 5 years old this month (date on tag was July 2009), and it’s really just a schooling helmet. My new brain bucket is the best Charles Owen I could afford. It’s the 4 Star Jockey Skull, or something. Which may be overkill for a housewife that only jumps over the occasional crossrail, but I figure if I fall off and land on my head, I want all the protection I can get.

Old Helmet New Helmet

I was rather surprised to see how much bigger the Charles Owen is to the Tipperary Sportege. But then, I suppose “vastly improved crush resistance” takes up more space.

Friday I got to ride Merlyn and Fairing. Merlyn was mesmerized by a couple of black chairs somebody had left in the covered ring. Granted, they weren’t there last time, so of course he had to snort and shy at these scary new things. Funny thing is, he happily walked up to them and proceeded to sniff one so enthusiastically I was afraid he was going to bang his nose on the side and hurt himself. Then, he started licking water (from the overhead sprinkler system) off the seat. Probably just a delaying tactic, but I was amused.

Merlyn Getting Cozy with Chairs Merdelyn

I hacked Fairing around the fields for a good half hour then took him in the ring to pop over some crossrails. The jumps were still set up with the cartwheel exercise, so I took him through that a few times. He’s fun, as long as he stays forward and balanced. Here’s the video if you want to watch it. I need more practice, definitely!

There was supposed to be a local dressage schooling show this weekend, and I was going to go watch since I don’t have any horses to ride, but the show was canceled Saturday due to weather, which is a bummer.

But maybe I can catch up on my reading. Speaking of, I have two articles I found this week and quite liked. Brain fodder, you know: News Flash! Great Riders are Made, Not Born and Perfect Practice Makes Perfect

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