Progress of a pony.
Ok, so I've put this picture up once before, in a thread asking if I might ever be able to ride her, if only to get her broke for my siblings to ride (40 lb and down) I'm 5' and about 115 lbs. Right now, she measures about 455lbs and 11.2 hands.
THE REASON SHE LOOKS LIKE THIS: So, about 2 months ago me, and most of my familly had to go on a trip that ended up being almost 5 weeks long. While we were gone, all of our land and livestock (including our pony) was left in the care of my older brother. (which I greatly distain right now!) But, long story short, he was lazy, and didn't think that the animals NEEDED food and water :-x..... So, in those 5 weeks or so, Star had gone from "plump" to extremely emaciated! To the point where the day after we got home, we rushed her to the vet, and got her on fluids. We gave her some water, but only some at a time, because she would have drunken herself sick!!!
So, after lots of care, regular (good) food, ALWAYS having water, and regular exercise, this is what she looks like, 2 months latter....
SO.... I wanted to work on her overall health and condition, and muscle building for the next several months. You can see it, she's slim and weak right now. And I've gotten some mixed bag results as to whether or not she could (NOT NOW) hold me, if only to break her in. (because she is a naughty pony!)
So, I wanted to post pictures (and possibly videos) every month to show her progress and condition. And in August get a good solid review form everyone on how she looks then, compared to now. THEN, we'll ask it again, if you suppose she could carry me or not. (remember, just to get her to behave, and not throw kids!)
I would say you could. Ponies are terribly hard to wear down, and in my opinion, after you've done your groundwork a couple of rides wouldn't hurt.
I would check with your vet to see if there is any reason they want you to wait to ride, if they give the go ahead I would say you should be just fine with working on ground work and light, short rides to start. Since you are probably a little tall for her even on a good day, I wouldn't work her too hard even once she is a bit more fit. Focus on her ground work and lunging to get her a bit more fit, then short rides just to tune her up for the kids.
We've been doing our groundwork for a few weeks now every day, and she's getting it pretty well. I want to make sure she's well out of the woods of "muscle and nutrition lacking" before I try.
The vet said it would probably be ok to give her short, walks under person to start, and move up to trotting once she builds up some. Only a few minutes at a time. I just want to be sure and safe myself with her, and get her up and looking good before I do.
She does walk with a small saddle strapped to her. It's a western style kids saddle, I think it's a 12" pleasure. It's about 12-13 lbs. Just to have some weight on her while she moves. She doesn't mind it, but she knows when she has a kid on her, and tends to spin or shake them off....
I'm 5'6" and lightweight and trained ponies - I just get the basics on them without drilling them over and over in the arena and then only get on for a tune up once in awhile. There is nothing wrong with working out the kinks - getting on bareback if you are small and light. I'm no expert but I think one of the reasons why ponies (especially ones too small for an adult) have such a bad rap - they are never ridden consistently and trained correctly because they are given over to children who just make a mess of them and make them cranky- I think you should do it and you are doing it for all the right reasons. You are small enough and the pony AND kids would benefit from your efforts!
I bred, raised and trained my pony (the paint one under my horses tab) JUST for my girls. I also taught him to drive so I can enjoy him as well. I never farm him out to others (I'm SUPER stingy because the safety of my girls is paramount) and I ride him a few times a year to keep him going. As a result he is sound, extremely friendly, happy and loves his job. It was hard work, but I wouldn't trade him even for millions of dollars and I've been offered upwards of 5 figures for him and he's just a grade pony Welsh cross. So here's a thumbs up from me!
Looking at it, it depends on which way you mesure.... (GirthXGirthXLength / 330) or (GirthXGirthXLength / 300 + 50) If you do it the second way, she's more like 485, closer to 500. I've seen it done both ways. Don't know which way is more accurate?
She also drives! She does real well on cart and sled! It's very enjoyable!
It's just that my siblings love her, brush her, and she's great when they walk her around with me. Even my oldest (younger) brother (7) is decent doing some groundwork with her..... She's just braty! But, I would love for them to ride her, learn about riding with her, and they'd love that too!
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