Thursday, August 20, 2009
Lily update, round penning and charming.
It's been so crazy at work, this will be pretty short. (I said that, but... well, look at this. It's long!)
Lily seems to be doing better after her injection. We worked both her and Cibolo in the round pen on Monday, then again on Wednesday and she had very little discomfort. Very promising.
Monday's round penning brought out a few bucks in both Lily and Cibolo, and I was worried when with Cibolo's in particular. I guess I'm a little paranoid about bucking, because I know a horse that hasn't been worked will buck in a round pen. Neither was saddled up and it was the first real work they'd done in a week.
By the end of the session Cibolo had finished his bucking (Lily only gave one, Cibolo had more like five) and was cruising around in a semi controlled fashion. I had trouble keeping him in a canter, but after a few rounds we got there.
Wednesday the farrier came out and we got shiny new natural balance shoes on both Lily (who keeps kicking off her rear shoes) and Cibolo.
Cibolo really charmed the farrier. His demeanor and level head came across instantly and by the time the farrier finished one shoe he said "I'd work on 15 horses like this one in a week. What a great horse."
Even though I can take absolutely no credit for it, I was ridiculously proud.
Lily has been more of a puzzle for the farrier, largely because she does have pain issues. He's very patient with her, patient but firm when she acts up. But every time she does pull away, he notes that it's not misbehavior. "She's trying to tell me something." He fusses over the hoof doing something I can't see, and then she responds better.
I learned something at that moment. I had jumped to the conclusion that she was giving attitude. He said it wasn't that at all, that there was an issue he needed to puzzle out.
I need to remember that. Both with Lily and probably, with life.
That said, holding horses for 3 hours is really... rough. I think I was more sore than I have ever been riding. I don't know how you farriers do it!!
We also cleared the air about the whole farrier/vet circle I got in. (I'd called my old farrier during the last encounter with the previous vet) He was fine with it, he just wanted to stay in the loop. I told him my vet said he was ding a terrific job and all I wanted was Lily to feel better.
Then after he was done shoeing Lily she stood funny, one front foot out a bit. But it was inconsistent. He offered to pull off the shoe, but recommended we leave it on for a couple days. It could be that she's feeling better in the other hoof and is shifting weight. It's just hard to tell. Fortunately it seemed to clear up the next day.
Trailer loading is going okay, I guess. They both will load and stand until I back them out (takes a few tries). But I'm not really making progress, since I'm alone or just with my 11 year old. I need another adult to help me get to the place where I'm putting the butt bar on and hauling down the road. I know it hasn't been long, but I'm a little discouraged because I want to go down to the lake to ride with both and I can't even imagine getting them in the trailer at this point on my own...
Our second round penning session went better - was totally buck free.
Question for all you veterans - what do you do when your horse bucks (not under saddle, just under round pen ground work)? Is it harmless? Is it disrespect (sometimes they are 'aimed in your general direction' kind of things) and therefore require a reaction?
I generally think of a buck as deserving only of another circle until the bucks stop. I try not to have any kind of reaction at all other than urging them to keep moving forward. But I was curious what others do.