I Feel Like I'm Cheating!!! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 05:54 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,912
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Unhappy I Feel Like I'm Cheating!!!

But I'm enjoying it!!! And I feel horrible about it!!!!

Okay so as some of you know.....I have Phantom, who I am head over heels in love with!! He's my baby boy and I can't imagine my life without him but....I feel like (and everyone else has too) I have gone as far as I can with him so I started to ride my friend's reining trained(I trained Phantom myself) fast, amazing turning QH. He is taking me so much farther than I ever thought I could go! Which is wonderful!!!! But I feel so bad because I know what to expect from Phantom's runs now (for barrels in between a 30 and a 25 is his consistent and has been the passed year and a half) and T.C's runs are so much more challenging and interesting and different every time which I love. I feel like I am gravitating away from Phantom...I still LOVE HIM UNCONTIONALLY but it's like I don't find myself as excited for riding him in the arena anymore....I could trail ride him all day or play around but in the shows it's different....I can ride him around outside the arena and have sooooo much fun but when I go through the shoot it's like "okay another 28 sec run coming right up." .....Ugh I really don't know what to do ...because I feel so bad for Phantom but I love riding TC (BTW I do ride Phantom waaay more than TC at home.) I know people say animals don't have "feelings" but they definately do.... and I can see in Phantom's eyes when he is confused, scared, upset, or excited. I think his age is catching with him we think he is 23 maybe even older because now he never really gets the excited looks at the shows anymore and I feel like he isn't really trying anymore. I get so upset because I get really excited about a run on TC but then when I run Phantom it's like it's lost it's spark....it's like oh same old same old. I feel like I'm letting Phantom down when I don't get uber excited about our runs but they are just so......predictable. I feel underhorsed on Phantom and just right on T.C.

I want to advance in my riding but I don't want to feel like I'm "cheating" on Phantom cause if I feel like that I can't enjoy my runs on TC...but then again if I enjoy my runs on TC then I feel bad because I didn't enjoy them as much with Phantom. UGH this is a never-ending circle of confusion. **headdesk**

UGH I am so sorry this is a novel but I needed to get it off my chest.

I really don't know what advice I need but I do know that I need some. I guess what would you do if you were me? Is this wrong? Why do I feel like this? Should I stop riding T.C. and focus on Phantom more?

Any advice or something is greatly appreciated.

**Homemade Candy and/or Caramel apples to anyone who finishes this!!

Here's a short vid to show both horses in the same event on the same night.

~ Hope is never light years away ~
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post #2 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 06:41 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ontario
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Lol, no such thing as cheating on a horse.
The more horses you ride, the better rider you will become. Sounds like the new horse has shown you that you can advance beyond what Phantom can do. You can still love your heart horse while riding another. I think you know this, you just want some validation. It's OK!!
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post #3 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 10:32 AM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
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I can relate. I'm brand new to this and already I'm seeing some serious limitations in the very first horse I bought (just a couple months ago).

My solution will be to find the right job for him. Something he enjoys and performs well at and then use him in that role whenever possible. More than likely, it will be trail rides. He's incredibly confident and sure-footed when he's in the trees.

My consolation for not riding him as much as I originally thought I might is that I know he'd rather be hanging out in the pasture with the mare, anyway.

It's a tough thing, it really is. But your horse is older and you are growing as a rider. If you continue to ride him and feel frustrated by the lack of performance, that will be harder on him and you than simply finding a different job for him.

I think in time you'll see that all is well. The horses will be happy in their roles and you'll have a really nice outlet on Phatom for those days when you just don't want to train and chase barrels and work. You just want a day in the saddle with a horse you love. He'll enjoy it every bit as much.

Change is hard. Everything that's worthwhile is hard.

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post #4 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 11:15 AM
Join Date: Jan 2009
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I know you said phantom is older but the only difference I really see between the 2 horses in training. Take phantom and teach him lead changes. He spends most of his time trotting and when he does lope he is on the wrong lead. He probable does not feel comfortable when loping. I would work on that and moving his body around and work on leads and you would be surprised how much better he will be. It will make it more fun for both of you.

It might also be he just does not like speed events. Try some thing different with him. If he like trails just use him as a trail horse. Giving a horse a job they like makes everything happy.

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post #5 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 11:23 AM
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I agree, the only difference I see is that phantom isn't doing lead changes and seems a bit off balance. I bet if you work with him and getting him to do flying lead changes you'll get a completely different ride with him. A wrong lead really messes with them when they have to turn...
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post #6 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 12:27 PM
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I agree! If you really wanted to, and you feel like Phantom would eventually like speed events, then you could work on his training and have a horse just as fact as TC. (TC is weird to type, I ride a horse named CT lol)

I'm sure Phantom will appreciate you if you let him do something he likes. I ride tons of horses, but I still ride my older mare on trails when I have extra time. She enjoys being able to relax under saddle and in the pasture, and I'm sure she's not "jealous" with the other horses who have to work hard! ;)

But I mean, there's no reason you can't ride both...

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world. ~Harriet Tubman
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post #7 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 12:56 PM
Green Broke
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I agree with all of it! :) you can ride TC so you can be a better rider and gain more expirience but you can ride phantom when you just want enjoy a ride. Riding should always be about fun and expirencing new things! :)... just like blink said lol

Horses are scared of two things... Things that move and things that don't.
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post #8 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 05:34 PM Thread Starter
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thanks guys.....I just needed to kind of vent (im a worry wart) ....he is in LOVE with trails ......just yesterday we did a 2 1/2 hour trail ride and he had a blast. I've been trying to teach him lead changes ever since I got him(cause he didn't know how to do them it sounds weird but it's true he would always reduce speed to change direction)....I even had a local trainer come and help me with it he said I was doing everything right(like cues) but he thought I should switch my bit(which I did yesterday) Phantom doesn't neck rein at all but when I got him he rode in a Tom thumb...I'm not fond of tom thumbs and also it kept getting pulled through his mouth (even with the shanks and bit guards) so I switched to a grazing bit. He likes the grazing bit but since he direct reins and it has shanks it made his turns weird...so we tried a snaffle, his turns were good and so were his lead changes but that got pulled through his mouth so in a final attempt I tried the full cheek snaffle....SUCCESS he loves it and it can't get pulled through his mouth and I only have to use very little pressure now instead of almost pulling (how i had to ride with the shanks :( ) His lead changes with this bit were pretty good too....so I'm gonna use it at the show tomorrow and I'll post a vid to see if he does well. We'll see...thanks again guys.

~ Hope is never light years away ~
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post #9 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 06:10 PM
Green Broke
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awesome! and I would love to see him in action again! :)

Horses are scared of two things... Things that move and things that don't.
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post #10 of 14 Old 07-30-2010, 07:04 PM
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Aw, Phantom looks like loads of fun. You say he's great on trails, so why not focus mainly on that? He could be your trail horse and you could do poles on T.C.. You're not cheating on your horse, and it's good for you to gain experience with riding as many different types of horses as you can.

I used to feel bad when my friend let me ride her horse for lessons once in a while. Victor would stare daggers at me during the whole lesson (his stall was adjacent to the indoor arena). He narrowed his eyes and laid his ears back as if to say, "How dare you." But then when I rode him, he pouted like, "Ugh, why me?" He's such a whiner, no matter what I do with him. lol

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