CW, when are you moving? Good luck with all that. Is your knee feeling better -- and if not, be careful with carrying stuff!
Stan, love love love the pics. Such a good boy is Bugs. I so hope he remains sensible when you put him to the test; his personality and willingness to work for you are just awesome!
Roadyy, I must have missed the post of when Boo got hurt. Those look nasty but hearing what you found at the scene of the accident, it's a wonder he didn't do himself a worse injury. Wow. Also, thank God you were not riding him when he went down, or it could have been so much more tragic. Since I missed the original post of the injury - are tendons and ligaments involved? Or just skinned up?
Lost, love the pictures; glad you found us again!
Corgi, hoping you are eating and resting. Your mare's face seems to say, "Now, what was it you were supposed to do?" and of course to a horse, eating is job #1! So get to it. Hoping you're finding it easier to take care of yourself. I love your husband's encouragement - he sounds like a keeper!
Critter, I wholeheartedly second Stan's advice on the Myler combination bit. I think I have 2 just like he's described. I am 2 1/2 hours from you & you seem a trustworthy lady & I would be happy to discuss sending you one on loan for a trial. It worked GREAT for my young gelding when he was fighting the bit, nose in the air, and couldn't be controlled. I was driving him and then moved to under-saddle work so I had one on each type of bridle. Now we're in a Myler comfort snaffle with hooks and he's retained what he learned in the combination bit. I think if your guy is responsive to a rope halter/nose pressure, you'll find that he becomes much more responsive in this bit. Like Stan said, you have either a feather-light touch or you can adjust for a maximum amount of leverage. The thing I loved about this bit is that if they respond to the reins by lowering their nose, the bit's mouthpiece doesn't engage and they become responsive to reins, even before the bit engages. That translates 100% to the next bit. By borrowing, you can see if it works. If it doesn't, you're not out over $100. If it does, you know what you want. Or, you can graduate back to the bit you're using now. PM me if you're interested!
Hunter, I agree with what you're doing. A trainer to work with the little delinquent (lovingly said) is a great thing; then the trainer can watch you work with him as well. You must accept that he intended to deliver a painful bite, although of course if you were a horse it wouldn't have been such a nasty injury. You're totally correct that he has to accept your leadership and respect you and I think you're giving him the best, fairest chance to succeed. I hope you make him think he is going to die for a few seconds if he even looks at you crossways! When my gelding was 4, I thought I was going to have to get rid of him - I hated that age. I also was told by my trainer that I was moving my feet and body out of his way when *he* moved first into my bubble...that's one of the hardest lessons I had to learn and I still have to remind myself. To this day, when I greet him in the pasture or corral, I'm pointing at his chest to make him back up and then I walk to him. When I put feed in his bucket, he has to step back and can't start eating until I allow him to move toward the bucket. Simple things can make a big difference, so you might have great success with Hunter.
The pictures over the past few days of people in saddles have been great! Love the vistas in Montana and beaches - awesome!