My life with TJ - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-18-2007, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: in the country, Kansas
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My life with TJ

thought i would give this a go........

i usually try to get out to the barn between 8-9am each day for the morning feeding. this morning i got out there around 9 and she greeted me at the gate, as always.

each time i go out there to see her, i have this entourage with me, three barn cats (Missy, Toast, & Little Kitty) of various ages, my old (11) female lab (ebony), and most times, lots of chickens, guinea's, and peafowl. TJ greets each one, individually. little kitty, the youngest, seems to be trying to figure out how to get on TJ's back. each day she will stand under TJ and look wayyy up to her back. she will walk around and under TJ, all the while looking up there. i sure hope i'm far away if she ever does get the courage to jump, cause i can only imagine what TJ will do if little kitty claws come into contact with her back. TJ pays no attention, at all, to the chickens, but she does try to greet the peafowl. those peacocks want nothing to do with her, and the peahens pretty much stay clear too, although not as much as the peacocks.

the last several days she has greeted me as always, but then as i am opening the gate to enter, she will turn her butt to me and just stand there, blocking the gate. so today i figured that i would take my "bat" with me and if she did so, then i would lightly smack her on the butt to make her move.

well, you know how good intentions are..... :roll:

i decided to take my camera along and get some pics of her. you guys have put me to shame with all the good pics of your horses so i felt it time to get some of my own. anticipating the wonderful pics i would get, i forgot the bat in the house. as it worked out, she started to turn her butt, and then thought about it again, and didn't. she stepped aside as i came in.

i snapped a couple of pretty good pics and walked on to the barn. she, of course, went to her feed trough and waited. i grained her, snapped a few more pics, and then put her alfalfa flake in the trough. lately she will grab the flake and put it on the ground in front of the trough. guess she prefers it off the ground instead. oh well.....

we visited awhile, i rubbed her vigorously as always, snapped a few more pics, and then said my goodbye till later.

i read somewhere that horses don't really like to be patted, but rubbed vigorously instead. this more replicates what goes on in the wild. you know, when they turn heads to butts and nuzzle each other?? so i've been doing this. i will start at her head area and work my way down her body and legs, rubbing in circles all the way. she seems to like it, to the point that sometimes she closes her eyes and seems to be falling asleep. if i stop rubbing, she will nudge my hand a little.

usually during her eating, she will stop and look to the southwest, several times. across the road our neighbor has his cows/calves, and farther south is a major highway. she spends most of her days standing at the far southwest corner of her pen, watching either the cows or the cars. haven't figured out which or both. during the bad weather last week, that is where she stood, instead of in her little barn where she would be clean and dry. i still don't understand why horses do that. they have the option of being warm and dry but will stand out in the worst kinds of weather.

oh well, enough for now.
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-18-2007, 01:28 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Barn
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As for your cats, dogs, etc...I think its adorable they all go see your horse!

As for the "hard" petting...I do that with myke, and at times he will turn his head (why I am still "petting") him and he will start "petting me back" its SO cute! I love it!
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post #3 of 6 Old 01-19-2007, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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Location: in the country, Kansas
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as for all the animals going down to visit - yeah way cool!!!

went down this morning as always and we spent some time together. sometime today, i need to haul down another bale of alfalfa from the big barn. not looking forward to that!! the big barn door is frozen shut, thanks to all the ice still on the ground, and its nearly impossible to get the wheelbarrow out to haul the bale in. oh well, i will figure something out. i always do.

i really wanted to go for a ride today as this may be the last opportunity for awhile. we are expecting another big snow storm to move in sometime tomorrow. its not really that cold out today, but as i was working myself up to going out, my hubby's 93 yr old uncle showed up for an unexpected visit. (he was "putting miles on his car"). then after he left i noticed that the wind had come up quite a bit, and TJ doesn't like the wind at all. she is out there running the fenceline as we speak.

sooooo, between the wind, the ice still on the ground, and her friskiness, i don't think it advisable to go ride. i figured i could get her around most of the ice, out to the road where it is dry, but no way with her acting as she is.

hubby called a bit ago and suggested that i call nick (the trainer) and see if he and his buddies were riding tonite in the arena, in town, (they usually do on friday nites). "maybe he will come pick you and TJ up and let you ride with them tonite". nahhhh, i don't think so. i don't know if i would feel comfortable with a WHOLE bunch of "ropers".....

another day goes by without riding. what a bummer!!!!
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post #4 of 6 Old 01-19-2007, 05:35 PM
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I have gone since saturday, and saturday I only got to ride bareback at a walk

I will have to be patient...I think I get to go tonight.
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post #5 of 6 Old 01-22-2007, 09:56 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: in the country, Kansas
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well, i did it!!

i called nick and he picked us up, and we went to town to ride.
it didn't go as badly as i thought it would.

the "ropers club" meets every friday nite at the indoor arena in town, and they practice roping calves. TJ had gone several times when nick was working with her, so she had some experience around calves. they didn't bother her at all, coming out of the chutes, or the ropes flying through the air.

we rode around (she & I) the arena, mostly at a walk to warm up. i trotted her some, but for the most part, she wanted to stand at the chutes, with the other horses. since she is so buddy sour AND she hadn't been ridden much lately, she was feeling somewhat frisky and didn't want to do much of anything, other than stand there with them. when i would try to get her away from them, she would start her rearing and head throwing.

after some time, i tied her up at the fence, away from the others, and took a break. she didn't like this at all. she started her normal pawing the ground and circling. then all of a sudden, she laid down and started to roll. saddle and all!!! i got her up before she did any damage to herself or saddle. nick saw her and came over. i told him if he wanted to ride her to go ahead.

he got on her and started to work with her, as they did when he had her in training. she didn't like that at all. by the time they were done she was very lathered up and exhausted, but was doing laterals and responding immediately to commands.

i got back on and walked for quite awhile. she worked much better. then i loosened the cinch and just led her around for about 45 minutes trying to cool her off. then we unsaddled all the horses, tied them, and we went to dinner. after about 2 hrs we came back and loaded them up. she was still pretty wet. i hated to take her home in the very cold weather that wet, but had no choice.

the next morning she was still wet.
hubby and i went to a horse and tack sale and they had a very nice, new, horse blanket. he bought it for me . we went home and gradually introduced the blanket to TJ. it didn't take long before we had it on her. i'm so glad we bought it cause when we were getting her use to it, she was actually shivering. not from fear, but the cold and being wet.

by sunday morning she had completely dried off and was acting much better, and since it was much warmer out, we took it off.
we will now use the blanket anytime she gets worked (when cold out) or if the weather is wet (rain, snow, etc.)

she seems no worse for wear, after her little ordeal. nick said that anytime i wanted to go with them, i could. so i probably will. this time i will be prepared though, with the blanket.
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post #6 of 6 Old 01-26-2007, 03:09 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: in the country, Kansas
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well since the snow i didn't get to ride until wednesday. that was pretty much a disaster.

she only wanted to go in one direction, and even then not very far. but i already posted that in the training section.

it is such a sloppy, muddy mess at our place. with all the snow (6½") we got last weekend, that fell on top of the 2" of ice we already had. so now the temps have been in the 50's most of the week, but 30's during the night. so everything thaws during the day and then re-freezes later. today there is tons of standing water everywhere. i just cannot soak in fast enough. the horse pen is so yukky. i don't know how she stands it, wading through all that muck. my chicken coop is surrounded by water. nice and dry inside their run though.

man, i wanted to try to ride again today, but with this mess, not so sure i should.............
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