Tale of Two Horses - Rescue/Rehab/Retrain/compete
Ok, since I'm healthy and able to train new horses for the first time since 2002 - we decided to sell the two 14hh & 14.2hh gaited horses that hubby and son (now 5'11" @ age 15) trail rode. Simply, the hubby has gained a lot of weight and son just grew - so they were both way too big for those mares. Had not done it early because I was too disabled to even think about finishing out new horses for them - and our price range dictates buying fixer uppers... But now I've been healthy for over a year and my teenage daughter is ready to learn training techniques... So we felt it was time to get back into rescue/rehab/retraining again. (made my living in my 20s doing this)
So I found two fixer uppers. Figured it would make a good thread for people who want to get into RRR to follow. I'll try and post new pics every two weeks or so. (BTW these pics were after 6" of rain in the last 24 hours...)
Goals: 1. get them in good condition/health
2. get them dead broke enough for the boys to trail ride
3. get them in shape for either Big South Fork or Skymont AERC
4. get hooves in condition to do the LDs totally barefoot (like my other mounts)
Shado: the black TWH mare with single sock. Purchased two weeks ago. Has already gained 50 lbs. Needs 150 more. 6 years old & 15.2 hh. Very GREEN. Obviously never ridden much. Moderately spooky around moving cars & water. Would kick out when we first started riding her and asked for her to go above walk. Also camel walked badly and over-reached with hind. Stumbled often. Had been shod for the first time just 8 weeks earlier.
Solutions: Wormed before she got off trailer. Has indoor kept round bail in paddock. Fed 2x daily with no mollases grain mixed half-in-half with sugar beat pulp + alfalfa pellets. Rode her by herself 5x per week for 1-2 hours just in slow gait (with bell boots) on our little country road with two short steep hills & two creeks. Had friends slowly drive vehicles back and forth. By the end of two weeks she was almost locked in gait, collected at the walk, beginning to canter on comman, no longer over-reaching and causing herself to stumble, and not freaking out over cars. Had farrier pull shoes last Sunday - so now she'll go down to 2-3 workouts per weeks mainly in turf obstacle course for the next couple of weeks.
Socks: Black SSH with four white stockings. 12 year old mare, 15-15.1hh. Only needs to gain about 50lbs to get a good covering over back. Built short backed and deep barreled. Perfect horse to carry a heavy husband. Was already barefoot but appeared to have gone a long time since a trim. But hooves looked sound. Purchased at auction on Friday - test rode her on Sunday. She IS locked in gait with nice headset and is fairly bombproof. However, she has obviously had beginner riders on her and developed a lot of bad habits (trying to pull reins out of your hands, meandering down road side-to-side. Fights the bit - obviously used to a more severe one. Going fast at first and refusing to slow down until 2 miles later)
Solutions: When I test rode her and she wouldn't slow down - I kept turning around and doing another lap on the road until she finally realized that walking might be a good idea. She will now be rode every night it is NOT storming by my advanced riding daughter. None of her bad habits are dangerous. She just needs a month of constant work under a rider who lets her get away with NOTHING. She is on the same weight gain regimine as Shado. And the farrier trimmed her up on Sunday as well.
Last edited by 2scicrazed; 04-30-2014 at 12:48 PM.