I haven't had my horse that long. I know when things are going too far, and I know when to bow my head and take a step back. Some people apparently don't.
There is a show this Wednesday about an hour away. It is for kids my age through eighteen. It's an all-western class.
Colby is well known for his barrel racing background. He's fast as a bullet and knows his way around the arena.
A girl at my barn has been training her Arabian gelding in Western Pleasure for the past few weeks. She and her mom have already decided that the horse has had enough training to be entered in two classes at this show. In my opinion the horse has too much nervous energy to be taken anywhere, let alone a show two hours away, for the entire afternoon.
Colby is a good horse and I know what he can do. He is far more skilled than I when it comes to barrel racing, and therefore I'm not entering him in any classes at this show. I feel that it would be a waste of time, energy and money.
This girl has only been riding for a few years. She thinks she knows horses better than I, which frankly, is not true. She can hardly sit still in the saddle for more than ten minutes, and her horse is a terrible match for her. I was riding Colby one day and she comes up to me and says, 'You should enter him in that show on Wednesday. We could all use a good laugh.' And then she walks off. I rolled my eyes knowing full well that Colby could run circles around her AND her Arab. Just because he isn't the most stylish pony in the world and he isn't a purebred doesn't mean anything. It's his surefootedness and trust in me and himself that counts, I think.
That same day I was cooling him down and she comes up leading her horse. I'd watched her ride for a little bit - she'd walked and cantered for no more than ten minutes, while I'd been on Colby for at least an hour. My horse was pretty tired and I was just getting to hose him off when she'd appeared.
"What are you doing?" She said, looking at the hose. I told her I was going to cool him down, and she raised her eyebrows. "Uh, no. Sharky needs a bath, and I'm not going to sit around all day waiting for you and your mule of a horse."
I just laughed at her and continued to hose my horse down - finally she walked away.
I don't know this girl that well, and I'm not jumping at the chance to befriend her. I don't care about her horse's bloodlines, and I don't want to listen to her complain about Colby.
Yesterday I walked into the tack room to find my saddle on the ground, as well as my bit and bridle. Her saddle was on MY rack. I found her in the barn aisle and told her to move her saddle.
"Why? Yours was in the way, and mine needed a rack." She explained. I told her how rude it was to leave someone else's tack ON THE FLOOR, and said that if she didn't move her crap in the next five minutes, I was going to take it and throw it into the muck heap. She finally moved it but grumbled about it all day long, and glared at me whenever I passed her.
Now, this last part was what really got me. I can take all of her snide comments, but I can't take her behavior around horses, especially my own. I'd left the barn for the afternoon to grab a sandwich in town, and when I returned Colby had been let loose in the yard. He was wearing a halter and leadrope and the lead was trailing behind him. It smacked his hind legs, spooking him, and he lunged toward me nearly having a heart attack. He had a cut on his back, probably from running into a fence post, and was sweating himself to death.
I was enraged. If Colby had darted across the road, he could have easily hurt himself or others. A car could have sent him into a panic, or could have hit him.
I marched him to the barn and once he'd calmed down and I'd put him back in his stall with some medicine for that cut, I went to find my trainer. She told me that the girl had asked if she could move Colby for a moment so she could cross-tie her horse (apparently Colby and his stall were in the way; does that even make sense?)
The girl had left for the day and I haven't run into her since. I told my trainer about everything she'd done and she told me she'd have a chat with her. But I am seriously pissed off. Colby doesn't deserve this and neitehr do I. If she wants to put my horse in danger with her foolishness, then believe me, I'm going to have something to do AND say about it.