Journal of Duffy the Girrafe Horse
Well, thought I'd start this off as of yesterday evening!
Went down a bit later, and she seemed fairly pleased to see me... new fleece has stayed in place too so thats a blessing.
I love rugs, would just like to put that in there. Grooming 182cm of fluff ain't too much fun, but its literally a quick dust off now..yay!
Got the jumping saddle I'm borrowing out.. argh! I love it and hate it, its a super saddle, but I like /dressage/. Will have to wait a few more months before we get our own me thinks!!
Well, I mounted, and she started walking backwards, with her head up. I reckon without the martingale it would have been worse. I released my hands, and sat back, and took my leg off, tried to get her to go forward off my seat.. Nah, backwards is the new forwards.
I was startled out of my shock by my instructor, who in broken English shouted KICK HER IN HER ASS. So, although I didn't boot her, she got a good ol' pony club kick and was brilliant. Square halts, backwards, collection.. the lot. Then she started fighting me on the right rein, it was late, and I started feeling like I was losing my temper, so I stopped, cooled down. And then went to dismount and she did this walking back thing again! So spent ten minutes walk/trot to halt and dismounted in another part of the school with no problems. Horses are just too clever for their own good!
She's going to be part of a theory lesson next week for a student so going to watch that, should be fun!
Good ride last night, no accidental walking backwards which was a god send!!!
I almost, however, had a crash haha! Riding a turn out of the corner, and was really concentrating on getting our change of bend right, and all of a sudden my dad wsa there riding his mare! Bless, Duffy just kept going like she didn't care, but Josie sulked a wee bit... and then it happened again! I blame it on my full concentration!
Mum got on to cool her down for me tonight, and its the first time she's ridden her in a month, and she can really feel the difference of how easy and supple she is now, made me want to jump up and down with hapiness!
A very, very good SJ in our area comes to use our school for her Anglo Arab mare in the winter, and I've always been too scared to talk to her, but I want to see if Duffy has a potential jumping career ahead of her! Apparently she has a lovely free jump. but I want to do pole work with her first so she realises where her legs are, and build muscles up! And she said she'll teach me! She was super impressed with Duffy's breeding too, and her height ;)
Roll on spring!!
Haven't posted anything, because there has been nothing out of the ordinary with Duffy recently! But now there is ;)
Last Monday my friend used Duffy in her theory lesson for confirmation. I'd say she's about 90% okay really! The only things to point out were her pigeon toes (obviously we already knew about those ;) ) but that its not as bad as she makes it look at times as its from the shoulder down, not the joint down. She could have a little more around her throat latch, but then she is still fairly overmuscled on the underside of her neck so that will take a wee bit of time, and her shoulder is a little steeper than what my instructor normally looks for! Apart from that, all is good :D He was SUPER impressed when he did hands on as to how far she has come in four months, made me want to cry a little :D AND she stood there for half an hour whilst we drew on her, examined her etc... she just stood! No digging to roll as per normal :D
Saturday I had my riding lesson, and a young girl of about 8/9 was wondering about the yard. You could easily see she had severe disabilities, but she asked by pointing at Duffy if she could stroke her. I thought, why not, Duffy is secure. So took her over, and Duffy dropped her head into the girls chest.. her head was nearly as big as this girl! She then came under the rope with me, I handed her a brush and she brushed, kissed and stroked Duffy's shoulder! Duffy turned her head and watched her, standing perfectly still. I was stunned, my fidget bum of a horse stood stock still for 15 mins!!
Dentist came out on Monday. I have to admit, I had nightmares the night before worrying baout what she would be like. And do you know what... apart from an initial pull back when the rasp was turned on, she stood, no sedation, no twitch!! Good ponio :) Lots of apples and treats!!! Her left side was a bit sharp, but all is well now :)
As far as riding is concerned, she's getting a bit ahead of herself and wants to do more, so I'm focusing on things like transitions, velocity in the gait, and trying not to crash in to people!
Decided not to clip her this year. We have worked so hard getting the weight on her, and the temperatures round here can get pretty **** cold, so no clipping, just lots of horsewalking!
Oh wow, I neglected this!
Time to revive it ;)
Well, I did clip Duffy in the end, and two months on its the best thing I could have done!!
Had a lesson last night, and to be fair, it was brilliant! I now share my wednesday lessons with a lady called Anke, who also has a fairly young horse, but rides an old school master. Its good training, as I have to learn how to hold Duffy back for when we start competing! (In lower classes you can be in there with up to six people)
She felt a bit 'off' on Tuesday, but rode her on, and she worked very well so we only did proper work for about 15 minutes after our 20minute warm up. I was happy with the work she did, so we left it at that.
Last night I'll admit she wasn't round the entire time, nor supple in her back, but there were other bonuses.
Like our canter.
We have issues with canter. She wasn't taught it under saddle, and for a long time struggled to maintain one through lack of muscle and balance. Now we're working on it, she's still confused about it a lot, and getting it is a bonus, keeping it has been a struggle.
But we had a MAJOR break through last night. Canter, kept it, ROUND, and not 100% pn the forehand. It felt amazing, so smooth and brilliant. And fast, the poor horse in front was pracitcally gallopping to get out of out way haha, so we just turned in to a smaller circle, she got a bit faster, got her back.
Lunging tonight as I'm without a saddle for now (borrowing one until the darn saddler fits mine properly). Hopefully she'll be well behaved!
She had a blast, bless her! Glad I put her back boots on. She had her mad 5 minutes of pure glee, a little squeal, and then lunged brilliantly.
Right side is definetly her better side, she's REALLY starting to lengthen the stride, but we managed to slow the trot and ask for canter without running in to it, back to a slow trot woohooo!!
My friend at work is an equine dentist, newly qualified, so he's coming down to look at Duffy and a new horse. Duffy was done in Oct, but can never hurt to have a free second opinion ;D
Happy days ;D
Will report back on our ride this evening ;)
Hey thanks :D
Well, today was.. okay, but not okay.
Put it this way- thought it safer not to ride!
Dentist came, he's new at it, and he likes to explain things- which is great, but when I have an impatient youngster on the other end of my lead rope, I did think maybe explaining after would be better... he's a friend, so may mention it to him.
Duffy was impatient. After the way she was in Oct with the dentist, I thought heck, she'll be fine. Oh no. She was a little horror. Not horrific, but she showed she was the big horse. We did what we needed to though, and then left her to it. Whilst he was filling in the chart, she stuck her nose out and tried to eat it, the towel, the books. He said it was no problems though, he just found it hard with her height.. no kidding.
So she went in the walker for an hour. Not a preference, but in all her messing she pulled my arm a bit- I wasn't in the mood to fight.
She was happy enough, so can't complain.
I have a lunge lesson booked tomorrow. We've been doing in hand whip work, and she has NO problems, I can touch, tap, even give a small whack and she stands there naked as can be and doesn't bat an eyelid.
So, step two. Lunge her, then when she's suitably warmed and all the YEEHAA's are out, insert two of my longer dressage crops under the lunge girth.. and watch sparks fly :O
Hoping a friend will film.. would be good so you can all see her moves, height, and her strops ;D
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