This is a LONG one...
Used the Quietex paste this past weekend...along with the daily supplement. Rook did great UNTIL some of the people we were riding with caught up. 5 of us had left out earlier than the rest. My friend, who is 68, has a 17 yo TWH that is really WAYYYYY too much horse for her. She's constantly pulling in his mouth and yelling at him, and it tears Rook up. He gets really upset when this horse is around him because of his constant pushing and her constant yelling. I feel bad for both the lady and her horse. The story behind this is that:
She's owned him for 14 years, and feeds him "what she always fed her other horse" which consists of a coffee can of grain that is EXTREMELY high in molasses, a coffee can of whole kernel corn, 1/2 coffee can of pure sweet feed, electrolytes, and about 1/2 cup of corn oil poured over it and mixed in "so the electrolytes will stick to his food". She uses one of the harshest shank bits I've ever seen (one of the guys riding with us called it a "correction bit"), and with her on the horse he goes with his neck way up and his head out...almost like an upside down L. I found out yesterday, that on our Saturday ride, she had actually wrapped the reigns around the saddle horn and was pulling them like a pulley or something to get extra leveradge!!!! She was so upset that DH got off of Rosie and led them both back back to camp.
We talked her into letting DH ride her horse in the ring yesterday morning. I told her that she deserved a nice peaceful ride that she could enjoy...instead of the constant fight that she deals with when she's riding her horse. She finally agreed and I went to saddling him right away before she could change her mind. After I saw that DH was ok with him, I saddled Rosie for her. As I'm sure all of you have read in previous posts, Rosie is as calm and "push-button" as can be. She got up on a picnic table to get on her, and I showed her how to hold Rosie's reigns. By the time that I led her over to the ring, she was jacking up on Rosie's bit like she does her horse. So, here I am in the middle of the riding ring with DH on her horse, and her on Rosie. During the whole two times she rode her around the ring, I was telling her to loosen up on the reigns. It finally got through to her when Rosie started slinging her head. I told her that she wouldn't do that if she just held the reigns at the end...instead of jacked up with a 10 inch loop in her hand. Rosie's reigns are a pair of one piece rope reigns that I picked up at TS, they're kind of short anyway. Rosie did exactly as I predicted and stayed at a slow, flat foot walk. She was so upset that her horse was doing better with DH on him...without him hanging in his mouth and the constant yelling; and that Rosie was being so good with her on, that she started crying and asked me to take her out of the ring. So I asked if we could take him out on the trail for a little bit. She agreed so I hopped back on Rose, opened the gate for him to come out of the ring, and both of us rode out of camp at a flat foot walk. I wasn't even holding on to the reigns. We only took them about two miles out, and we worked on the things that upset her horse even more while out on the trail. We walked back into camp at a flat-foot walk...both horses on a very loose reign.
Several of our friends told DH and I that we should trade horses, and him take her horse as a project horse. Of course she wasn't around while they were telling us this. But she has to have epidurals every 3 months for back pain, and has had a hip replacement, and a knee replacement. She weighs close to 250 lbs, with no real muscle mass, and has some serious problems getting on her horse even when she's standing on a picnic table. It's even worse when she's getting off of him after the ride. He's about the same height as Rook (about 16.2 hh). With Rose, she was able to just put her leg over her from the table.
Numerous people have told her that she needs to stop the sweet feed, corn, and corn oil...but she wouldn't think of it...because "Panda was fine with being fed that", and "he likes it so much, I can't take it away from him". I didn't mention any of what was said to us when she came out of the trailer after we got back. I just couldn't at that time. She was already upset and I wouldn't do or say anything intentionally that would hurt her feelings. At the same time though, I can't think of her getting hurt by riding him. But when the guy that took her and trailered her horse to Gettysburg called me last night, he said that they had a lengthy conversation about it on the way home, and that she was thinking about the trade.
My problems with this...
1) While DH is starting to enjoy the riding and the camping, he's admittedly not ready to take on a horse.
2) I don't need another project horse...Rook is all that I can handle right now.
3) While I know Rosie would have a good home...not even a mile from where I live. I just don't think I could give her up knowing just a portion of what she's been through in her life, and how good she's been to me.
So, I think I'm going to put a stipulation on the two of us riding together. If she wants to ride, she's going to have to ride Rosie. And after talking to a few of our friends, we can't ride by ourselves...somebody else HAS to be with us. They were telling me that it just isn't safe for the two of us to go without at least one other person. Reasoning behind it is that if something were to happen to her, that there would be no way that I could get her up by myself; much less get her back on the horse or help her off of the trail on foot while trying to control her horse and whichever horse I'm riding that day. Or, if something were to happen to me, she wouldn't even be able to get off of her horse to help. They are very right on both counts.
Sorry about this being so long. I had to get it out because it was our friends that were telling me this, and I had to get it out somewhere...my family wouldn't understand.