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My war horse of Doom.

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        11-03-2013, 07:27 PM
      #91
    Green Broke
    I love those kitties! I hope they stick around <3
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        11-05-2013, 09:25 AM
      #92
    Yearling
    So.. today is a special day..
    Grand is 3 years and 6 months old.

    Makes me happy, he is growing older and older, then again we are running out of time of happily not doing anything, but I think that will not go anywhere.. I am running out of time for them slowly, so when I have the time, we just hang out..

    So I took him out of the pasture just to hang out a little, brush, conditioned his mane.. gave up on brushing as he is still a bit wet from the rain this morning, or maybe he rolled somewhere His mane looks awesome now.

    DSC_0746.jpg

    Then I decided that it was ages ago that we saddled last time, so I took my dressage saddle this time (still has stirrups on, as I took the stirrups off my universal saddle when I lunged Grand with it the first time). Took Grand for a walk with the saddle tightened slightly, asked him to trot on both sides too on my 10 ft rope. Tightened the belt some more.
    He did not bat an eye about the saddle being flapped, stirrups moving about, leather hitting another leather.. he could not care more.
    He still takes no matter what saddle with a strong stride and with ease... I know dressage saddles are not the best to start the horse in, but this one fits him better...
    DSC_0754.jpg

    I also (here comes the part where I feel bad and superexcited at the same time).. SO I jumped at his side. All I got was him turning an ear. Didn't even raise his neck as he usually does when feeling unsure, uncomfortable or anything that he does not particularly like. Put my foot in the stirrup, no reaction..
    Started jumping up and down with my foot in the stirrup, and putting some weight on it... He slightly turned his head and raised his neck. Stopped, petted him all over, told him how much I loved him, walked him to another spot. Repeat.
    Started jumping a little more higher, stronger... He didn't bat an eye.. then he got distracted by something else and was staring away..
    So I talked to him some more, turned him around, asked him to walk a few more circles..

    Jumped some more in the stirrup, and left myself hanging on the saddle.. thank god it was not slipping round his back, so managed to tighten it well..

    He raised his neck, turned his head, and started sniffing the back of my boot that was in the stirrup..

    On that note we ended everything, tied him to his place, took the saddle off, big hugs and his bucket of tasty stuff they hate pumpkins though..

    Then I sat down to wait for Grand to eat, and something happened..

    DSC_0765.jpg

    Them two decided to sit on my lap

    Teddy had to plough today. I decided I might want a mini garden next year, to grow some simple things for myself, but I cannot dig the garden up myself, there are lots of weeds and grass etc. So we fixed my old horse plough, Hitched Teddy to it, and experimented. He has driven, he has pulled weights. Something was not working at first and the plough wanted to go deep in the ground and Teddy could not pull that, or rather he did not want to, he started stepping sideways, backing a little, not going forwards, not walking straight etc.. we hitched him to this other thing too, to clear up the ground first - I lost the name, but its a metal square with long metal fingers going in the ground, it irrigates it... With that he was doing easier, as long as it was not pushed in the ground too much...

    Afterwards he got everything taken off and given lots of praises, hugs and a few apples. And of course I let him rest after each go, told him how good he is etc..


    Overall mood of the day.. Too excited.. too willing to get on my baby's back.. without a bridle.. and not sure he would respond to halter pressure form the back.. so I guess that limits me. Plus when I climb on his back properly I will have a person holding him, just in case.
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        11-06-2013, 12:22 PM
      #93
    Yearling
    So, I decided I need to do something today too. Was not sure if we are going to trails today, so did not touch Teddy (but he exercised himself) so I took Grand.

    Grand's first lesson: "oi, why do you dare walk away from me for the first time when I am calling you?" He was walking to the other side of the pasture because, my guess, Teddy was there.. But he stopped, waited for me, and then came to me to put the halter on.

    Second lesson, remember backing up together with me, and turning better, so his head stays out of my space.

    Third lesson, we have to be able to bridle. For some reason he really dislikes it. He did open his mouth himself in the end to pick up the bit, but mostly he tries to raise his head to the clouds when I try to put the bridle on. I did "desentise" him to it - put it all around his head, soothing him with my voice and pets. Afterwards it was much easier. Then gave him a treat with the bridle on. He was eating it forever. He was also playing with the bit. Managed to set it lower down without him getting stuck with his tongue over. Sorted it out a little, didn't fit it perfectly yet, he is not standing well for it. We most likely will have to use the flash noseband because he does throw his tongue over too much. The bit length according to my trainer is ok, but I still want to try a size bigger one. At this level it hangs in his mouth and he kinda has to pick it up, but at least he is not "smiling" too much..
    DSC_0741 (360x640).jpg

    Walked around with the bridle on for a while, he calmed with the playing, asked him to turn his head with bit pressure.. need to work a lot with the bit before I climb on him with the bridle on.. but we still need a lot of muscles before I mount anyway

    So, then I decided he needs to start training for trails
    Took him outside, walked a bit away from the road, grazed, watched Teddy go nuts, he was jumping, spinning, bolting, rearing, bucking, trotting, cantering, galoping and all other things he could think of I guess they both have some kind of separation anxiety.. Grand runs like mad in the pasture when Teddy leaves too.

    Grand did not bat an eye to the cars, but tbh, he was only maybe 15 ft closer to them than their pasture reaches. Then a few cars passed us when we were on the side of the road to get to the forest path (mostly drivers here drive with 100-120 km/h) One went past us facing us pretty fast, and Grand could not care.
    Checking where his lil bro stayed.
    DSC_0743 (360x640).jpg

    He was very with me in the walk, we weren't there for too long, but it is a start, need to find some time when I can spend at least an hour walking around, grazing, exploring etc. Best is with company ofc..

    He would not even graze at some point, he did not look stressed, but he was checking back where Teddy stayed, he did poop a bit more and it was getting wetter, but he stayed with me, listening, under my control and nice.

    DSC_0752 (360x640).jpg

    We got to this one crossing, and also heard some woodcutters in the distance and Grand got slightly anxious, so I decided to let him a bit off me, ask him to walk around, explore on the length of the 10ft rope.. He did try to trot, and jump a little, shook his head and neck once, but I told him off about that.. He snorted once through the whole walk.. Just stared at things

    DSC_0755 (360x640).jpg

    DSC_0767 (640x360).jpg

    DSC_0758 (640x360).jpg

    He did try to rush home, but I frequently asked him to stop, well actually I just stopped and if he didn't, I corrected him by backing him up. He hates backing He makes his huge face about it, and shakes his neck and flicks his tail, but nothing to do, he has to back up. So he does. When he is unsure of the place he turns his hind more left and then backs up, as he has seen what is there..

    DSC_0761 (360x640).jpg


    I am actually still very proud with him... just a bit annoyed that he is not an easy keeper. Well, sometimes Teddy does not let him eat hay, but when Teddy is not there he won't eat either, he stands around quite often.. he does only get up to 3lbs of "grain" feed, and about 50 ml of oil, but I do not want to put too much in him, as he does have energy, and I cannot get alfalfa hay, I cannot get beat pulp and all the other good stuff.. Also, the vet thinks he is like that because his muscles are not catching up with his growth..

    I want to see what changes when I lunge a bit more often and with sidereigns to encourage muscle growth.. at the moment he looks fatter one day, thinner the other..
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        11-06-2013, 03:53 PM
      #94
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    we have to be able to bridle. For some reason he really dislikes it.
    Has he had his teeth checked? Sounds really like a dental problem.
         
        11-06-2013, 04:10 PM
      #95
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Saranda    
    Has he had his teeth checked? Sounds really like a dental problem.
    yes, about 2 months ago. Not much needed doing, just to even out the teeth so they compensate for the missing tooth while it grows out.. he has no wolf teeth, no canines, nothing out of the ordinary. We have scheduled a checkup in jan/feb for his teeth again if the weather allows.

    I think it is mainly because he is very sensitive to pressure, he occasionally shuts down if there is too much of it. (will try a wider bit as well) and might be that at his old home (they said they had bridled him) something went wrong.. or we just need a different bit.. or use the flash and then see..
         
        11-06-2013, 04:31 PM
      #96
    Super Moderator
    I'd probably try the softest bit I can find (maybe he dislikes moving parts in his mouth and needs a mullen mouth/straight bar bit? - http://www.thehorsebitshop.co.uk/sho...s/1785_sml.jpg , or maybe his palate is low and he needs something a bit thinner? ) and do lots of groundwork in it - responsiveness, simple flexing. Probably would take for walks in the bit, but the lead attached to a halter. I wouldn't use a flash, though, but that's just because I really, really dislike flashes.
         
        11-07-2013, 02:36 AM
      #97
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Saranda    
    I'd probably try the softest bit I can find (maybe he dislikes moving parts in his mouth and needs a mullen mouth/straight bar bit? - http://www.thehorsebitshop.co.uk/sho...s/1785_sml.jpg , or maybe his palate is low and he needs something a bit thinner? ) and do lots of groundwork in it - responsiveness, simple flexing. Probably would take for walks in the bit, but the lead attached to a halter. I wouldn't use a flash, though, but that's just because I really, really dislike flashes.
    I actually have 1 straight rubber bit somewhere here, but its quite a bit thicker. The one he had on yesterday is simple 3 piece, but quite thin, so no way I am going thinner than that..

    Will have to walk around with the bit a lot more of course, he might be just turning into a massive expressionist telling me he is like: "What the hell did you just push into my mouth? I was doing fine without it.. why do we need it?". Maybe that is the one thing that gets his reactions..? Saddle never did. Pressure to saddle doesn't....

    Yesterday I did not want to take him for his first walk to the forest with the bridle on, that would limit his happiness Or overwhelm him.. but next times we might.. and lunge with the bridle on, but rope on halter..

    Flash was the suggestion from my trainer to stop him from tongue tossing..
         
        11-07-2013, 03:35 AM
      #98
    Super Moderator
    Maybe he just wants to go bitless? :)
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        11-07-2013, 05:32 AM
      #99
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Saranda    
    Maybe he just wants to go bitless? :)
    Maybe. I was thinking about that, but not sure if it will work out in the end.
         
        11-07-2013, 05:39 AM
      #100
    Super Moderator
    I really have never seen a horse who hasn't done well bitless. Apart maybe from horses with facial traumas, but I haven't met those. Besides, there are so many bitless options that everyone can find what suits him best!
         

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