Sunday, May 30, 2010

A very busy week on the farm

Let's see, where to begin?  Other than Daisy the pony, who is her usual sweet self and whose main job is to stand around, look cute, and give the occasional pony ride, all of the horses in my "family" have had momentous weeks.
My farrier's mare, Heather, whom I've been mare-sitting for about six months, foaled a nice big, leggy bay filly (might turn gray, I was certain at first but now am not so sure) on the 25th, at the very polite hour of 11pm.  No troubles, a textbook delivery, and the only problem I have is that the mare WILL NOT be caught.  She's out in the big pasture eating grass, hanging out, and being feral.  So the filly is minimally socialized but I'm hoping mama will soon get tired of the bugs and the sun and decide to come in.  

Erika's got a pregnant horse at her place who will be coming here in a week or so to foal as well.  I kind of like the idea of having a nursery--have some mares around, babies and youngsters all over the place, and keep the "going" horses in training at Erika's place.

Which brings me to the more depressing part of the update.  Bonnie became off a couple of weeks ago, progressing to the point where she's now quite lame.  Last year she developed an odd bump on her pastern, but X-rays were normal at that time and she was sound.  Glad I got the films done then--new X-rays done this week show some ossification up high in the lateral cartilage, or in other words, she's growing a sidebone.  Not terribly surprising given her big body and somewhat less than elastic way of moving, plus she's had a couple of hard clobbers to her ankles.  Prognosis uncertain, starting with 3 months off and hoping to get a lameness vet to check her over soon so there's no missing the forest for the trees.

But to keep it on the upbeat, the idea of a Bonnie baby has been growing on me.  I wouldn't say she's solidly earned her place in the gene pool with her competitive career, but she has the best temperament, really good legs and feet (current condition perhaps notwithstanding) and yes, I'd take another one like her.  Haven't made up my mind yet, but things have a way of happening for a reason, which is how I'm looking at this lameness issue.  Stay tuned!

Keebler has been doing great, nice and shiny and a lot happier, it seems, since I changed him from my regular ration balancer to Ultium.  I'm giving him some TUMS, as well, which he thinks are horse treats, just in case his tummy is bugging him.  He is 100 times less cranky and generally is being a happy dude.  He is back at Erika's now while I switch all these mares around.  He'll get to hang out with his gelding buddies and act like a hooligan without an emotional mother-to-be grouching at him all the time.

This weekend we went to May-Daze and did our first Training HT together.  Dressage was really pretty darn good, and if I'd had the horse in the ring that I had in warmup I think our score would have been even better than the 37.7 we got.  I know it's not an earth-shattering score, but the improvements have been huge and I think it'll keep getting better.  Dressage shows, poor Keebler, are in the future.  Stadium went well once we got past the first jump!  Something distracted him on the way in or he decided it would be a really good time for naughtiness, but I found myself going sideways on our opening circle, and I swear he never even saw fence #1, plowed right through it.  I should have circled again before sending him but didn't think I had time since the judge had blown the whistle the moment we went in.

I hate to show this first picture, but compared to the second one it is a great illustration of the difference between Keebler Not Paying Attention and Keebler Realizing It's Time To Go To Work.  The first picture is jump #1, the 2nd picture is just 8 or 9 strides later, fence #2, with Our Act Together.

Cross country was a blast, and although Keebler had one big spook at a shiny black ramp (the smallest jump on course!) which genuinely seemed to surprise him--he got sideways so fast I was nearly on the ground--he absolutely was perfect everywhere else and literally ate it up.  Felt fantastic, and I can't wait to do it again!   Next weekend I'll have my chance at Indiana.

Helmet cam video is a little large for our satellite to handle without coughing up a hairball, but it came out great and I will post it later.

1 comment:

  1. OK, the photo editing didn't work out the way I wanted--obviously the top right picture is fence #2 and the bottom left one is the one he didn't see. LOL