Monday, July 13, 2009

On A Scale of One to Ten,

I'd rate my horse an 8 as a trail horse.

This is a picture of My Boy and I next to the "Big Blue Monster." He's finally building some muscle on his spotted hiney!

On the trails we ride, there is a huge piece of machinery. It looks like a blue metal ramp, possibly used to haul logging equipment. It has not been moved in years and has alder trees growing around and through it. Every time we come out of the wooded trail and into the small cleared intersection where the Big Blue Monster is, the horses always look at it with extreme interest. I've rarely seen a horse just walk right up to it. Usually they snort a little, move sideways, and generally expect the thing to leap up at them at any moment.

Last week, as we approached the blue monster near the homestretch of our ride, I was shocked that My Boy curiously walked right up the blue monster when I asked him, even smelled it when he got there (no doubt thinking there might be something to eat on it.) I even side-passed him up next to it for a picture. Credit for the helmet and the "lemonade" in the water bottle goes to Paint Girl. She is loaning me her helmet to try, since I came to the conclusion that mine was giving me headaches and that I might want to opt for a lighter-weight style than I was planning on purchasing. Actually, credit for the "lemonade" should go to my aunt The Desert Rose, the "lemonade" queen. A little liquid courage never hurt on the trails, but that is a different post!

My Boy is a little annoyed he's hasn't been front and center in the blog posts of late, all this talk of a "mutant monkey" has him stamping his little steel clad hooves. Speaking of which, he got new shoes on Saturday. It'd been about 8 weeks since his last shoeing, and my farrier said his hooves were "good enough to go on a horseback riding trip." This was good to hear as scheduling farrier appointments around a horse trip is tricky. We have one next month and I don't want my horse to be "due" the week after the trip as that might be pushing our luck, yet I don't want him to be too freshly trimmed so that he's tender. I'm just hoping My Boy can keep his shoes on! I noticed the farrier put in an extra nail in each hoof this time.

At first, My Boy was a little stinker for the farrier with his hind legs. I think our recent miles under saddle on the trails have him a little sore, we have been hiking up and down some serious hills! I should have given him a little horsey aspirin and the thought crossed my mind. Sorry spotted pill!

I am happy to report the sarcoid is looking better. It still has suspicious looking tissue, but I am keeping my fingers crossed that it is scar tissue from the sloughing. I heard Xxterra can cause scarring. I'll take a scar over a resurgence of the bump any day! At this point I'm going to keep an eye on it and as long as it doesn't change for the worse, I do not plan to have the vet out. At least not until after our horsey trip, as any biopsy or surgery to his face area could prevent him from being rideable for a few weeks.

Last but not least, I remember my Cowgirl Dreams book giveaway post? Nobody pointed it out at the time, but My Boy was in the pasture and not wearing a halter! Shortly after that, it went back on, until the sarcoid healed and we got through the 4th of July firework ruckus. However, when I turned him loose after his farrier appointment last weekend, Paint Girl and I talked about it and I decided to leave the halter off. He has been meeting me at the gate every time I call him, and even when I remove the breakaway halter and put on his normal one, he hasn't been goofy or pulled back.

My Boy walking down to meet me from the back of his pasture.

I decided it was time to start working with the catching a little bit again. If I know I have to catch him for a big ride or event, I will leave on the breakaway. But I'd like to get it off of him as much as I can. So, we'll see how the catching game goes this time around. Keep your fingers crossed!

I hope you all had really super great weekends!

28 comments:

  1. You only had a couple sips of lemonade sis! Don't tell our dear Auntie DR, she would be disappointed in you!
    Your boy is getting muscle from all that hill climbing we have been doing. And we have been doing a lot of it! Your boy is also a trooper out on the trails, even with his fly/bug issue he has. He goes anywhere and everywhere! I'd give him a 9!
    We should be happy to report that we did not see any creature's out on the trail this time. Hopefully never again, but I'd like to see that one we saw, just so I know we weren't imagining it! LOL!
    WV- buckin
    I hope that doesn't mean there is going to be any "buckin" going on soon! Yikes! I might not be riding Fritzy on the trail this week!

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  2. He looks GREAT, both in terms of muscle and coat. Spots make me weak LOL!

    I don't care what kind it is, helmets to me are always HOT. Although my western hat helmet is better looking than a regular one, and the brim does keep off some sun, it is also hot, and the brim can catch the wind on windy days. I still use my other helmet.

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  3. I am glad your boy is getting better about the Blue Monster! We have a few monsters out here--some old and ancient farm equipment here and there. Sometimes too if there is a slightly exposed culvert (is that the word? I eman one of those drainage tubes under the ground), the horses will give a snort at that! I wonder who takes you pictures on the trail? Is that Paint Girl?
    Good idea to try a new helmet!

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  4. Your boy has plenty of butt - at least by Aussie (stock horse) standards!!!

    Glad to see you in a helmut (do you always wear one?) - I notice in some American blogs no hats OR helmuts which seems a little crazy to me... our kids always have to wear them and the men wear hats working and helmuts during horse sports (at least mine do!!).

    And as for halters... none in the paddock at GG - if they want food, them come to the bridle!!!

    BB

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  5. Lynn@StockHorseShowSourceJuly 13, 2009 at 5:16 AM

    I love the magical horse eating monsters that wait for an unsuspecting horse. I was at a show with my QH mare who is normally so quiet and not much bothers her. This show had posters along the rail advertising sponsers. Out of all the posters around the ring, she decided it was the one on the gate that was going to get her. I was jogging around the ring (didn't give a thought to the posters and banners) and when we got by the one on the far gait we went sideways (is was a little impressed at her slight dressage type movement despite being a western pleasure type horse).

    I had to formerly introduce her to the poster...which she decided to try to eat when she realized it was no horse eating monster.

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  6. sounds like 'my boy' is a very brave pony regarding the blue monster! those trail rides sound like so much fun!

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  7. Your Boy is a very good trail horse! That blue thing looks ominous.
    I hate wearing the helmet - I look like an alien, but I guess it has to be! You don't look as goofy as I do.

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  8. You are brave Pony Boy, I don't think I could get close to the blue monster

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  9. Trail monsters are a funny thing... it can be something that's perfectly fine at home but out on the trail where its not supposed to be and its "ohmygoshimgoingtobeeaten!!!!!"

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  10. He looks wonderful ! glad the sarcoid seems to be better. Sounds like you are having lots of fun on the trail rides lately

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  11. The "blue monster" situation is funny -- so strange how they think almost everything on this planet is a horse killer. Do you guys have to go over that blue monster, or can you get around it??? I like having challenging stuff on the trail. I think it is good for the horse, and good for me. Keeps you sharp.

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  12. Your boy's butt is looking awesome! Nothing like a big ol' stock horse butt!

    Kudo's on all the trail riding you are doing too. So good for body, mind and soul. Yours especially! People who don't ride or hike just don't get what that can do for you.

    Some helmets fit so much better than others and even within the same brand there are huge differences. My daughter and I have the same brand and hers pokes my head and mine fits great. She feels the same about mine and won't wear it. Odd.

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  13. Have you ever considered using hoof boots instead of shoes? I really like easyboot epics - I have to use them on my quarter horse mare. I could shoe her too, but I've discovered that the boot route is much less expensive for me. I bought 1 pair for her front feet, and I've used them for a year and a half without one ever coming off on the trail, and I've ridden in some hairy stuff. And they are nowhere near worn out. I think I'll get at least another year or two of use out of them and the pair only cost me $120! And my mare never gimps on rocks when I use them. The best part is that I just take them off when she's in the pasture since she doesn't need them there anyway, and I never have to worry about coming and finding that she's lost a shoe. The boots are really easy to use.

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  14. {Kara}~ Thanks for the tip, it is definitely an option to consider. I saw some Easy Boots at the feed store and I'm thinking I should order at least one before our trip.

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  15. {Regina}~ We don't have to go over the blue monster, thank goodness! We just have to walk past it. I think it's good to face these kinds of things on the trail...prepare us for the real wild things, LOL!

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  16. The hotter it gets, the more tempting it is to leave off the helmet. Then I remember having to get my head stapled shut 7 years ago and put the dang helmet on.

    I was kind of insulted that a guy I ran into riding thought my wearing a helmet meant I was a beginning rider. I guess I think just the opposite. I've had enough experience to know that no matter how good of a rider you are, you can still come off and get hurt.

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  17. {Mary}~ I totally agree. It just takes a split second for an unexpected accident to happen on the trail. I don't know how many times I've ducked under branches and what not and been glad I just had my helmet on just to prevent me from getting minor scratches! And actually, for some reason, the helmet and heat isn't really an issue for me. If it is hot enough, the heat will be bothersome regardless- not wearing a helmet won't really change that too much! ;)

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  18. Pony Girl - if you do ever get an easy boot, make sure it also has the gator with it (the part that wraps around the pastern). In my experience, regular easyboots without the gator always fall off at some point in your ride (horse usually steps on the back of it). With the gator, they can't pull it off if they step on the back of it.

    And I found another good reason to wear a helmet the other day. I got dive-bombed by a red-winged blackbird and he hit the top of my helmet! I was glad I had it on!

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  19. My Boy is so pretty. Great ride you had with him. Brave boy to face the big blue monster.

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  20. There is nothing like a dependable, confident, and reliable trail horse, is there? Especially when there are scary monsters all over the trail...teeheehee!!

    Your Boy is so handsome, and I am happy to hear that he is behaving himself when it comes to the haltering process. :)

    PS-Any luck with the Mutant Monkey?

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  21. The blue monster looks scary! It looks like he did well with it though! Glad his sarcoid is doing better!

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  22. The blue thing isn't so bad...however, I have it on excellent authority that there is a REAL MONSTER in the bushes about 20 feet to the east of the blue thing.

    Yep. Fiddle tossed me into the salal last winter after walking calmly past that blue thing. Harumph.

    Thank heavens for the helmet! I tell people I wear it because I ride REALLY FAST...a total lie, but they are more willing to believe that it's necessary for that.

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  23. I hope you did not waste that good "lemonade"!!! I can't believe you did not get Your boy over to that monster before...did you think it would eat you too???

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  24. What a beautiful horse you have...you are so lucky!

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  25. Just look at the beefy Appy!! He is one handsome boy!! I am glad he is now friends with the scary blue monster! Horses are so weird like that sometimes......???

    I had a few posts to catch up on, I have been such the blogger slacker lately. But I love catching up on all the trail riding you have been doing. And that freaky monkey thing? WEIRD!! Maybe it was big foot's baby???

    Okay probably not! Maybe I should get some more sleep!! :)

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  26. Liquid courage, eh? I think I'm gonna need that when it comes time that I can get back on a horse again. What do ya think?

    My Boy looks great...and way to go not being afraid of the blue monster, too. Baby Doll is more spooky now than she was when I was riding her. While walking back home, alongside her leased pasture, she was spooking like crazy at the same pasture she was just in. It took everything I had to try and get her attention back on me and kep disengaging her hips. She was all prancy and in a hurry....and with my knee I don't walk fast now. I'm so sore from her silliness. bah!

    So, yah, way to go your handsome trail pony...and wow! He's got a big ol butt! hehe!

    ~Lisa

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  27. My Boy is really looking good PG!!

    I like a horse that will face and have interest in something that spooks them...the spin and bolt reaction sucks!

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I love hearing from my readers!! I truly enjoy all of your feedback, advice, helpful tips, and stories. You all make me laugh and I learn so much from you, too. I will try to post replies to your comments as often as I can.

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