The Moonshine Journal - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 46 Old 07-20-2019, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Austin TX
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The Moonshine Journal

So in this journal I plan to talk about what me and Moonshine (my horse) do each time I visit her, hopefully with lots of pictures included. FYI, Moonshine is a grumpy, bombproof 16 (ish) year old blue roan quarter horse. She was western trained, and is just getting used to arena work and dressage. She canters better to the left than to the right. I'll probably post mostly about the trick training I do with her. She can back up over raised poles, follow over raised poles, turn on the forehand, and is learning the statue (standing still). The tricks I teach her come from Trick Training for Horses by Bea Borelle.

Here's to lots of fun horse days!
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post #2 of 46 Old 07-21-2019, 07:45 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Austin TX
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Me and Moonshine had a great lesson today! She was a little bit up (my trainer thinks that might be because a horse in the pasture next to them colicked and died last night), and apart from jerking out the gate (it was open) and almost running over my trainer a few times, she was really obedient. We cantered a little bit, and she was going a bit fast, but she picked up the correct lead in both directions (usually she fights going to the right). Then we did a figure eight trotting where she had to stop in the middle, and she was great with that to! Afterwards I bathed her and let her roll, then gave her cookies (a great step in teaching her to lie down).
Our trick training lesson wasn't as good, but she did master the statue pretty quickly. We didn't have that much time, but we also worked on yielding the backhand - she can do it while I stand at her neck now! - and worked on the "Hoe" command (this is important when you learn to ride without a bridle).
Overall, great day today!
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post #3 of 46 Old 07-22-2019, 07:51 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Austin TX
Posts: 78
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Great day today! We didn't have a lesson, but there was a new farrier coming, so we went to the barn today anyway. FYI, if you live in the Austin area and are looking for a good farrier, I really liked the one who came today. Her name is Rebecca, and she does the horses on the mounted patrol. This was only her first day, but she really made a good impression on both me and my mom, and I think she'll be our permanent farrier from now on.
(the hoof on the right was the one she did first).
Moonshine did amazing in our trick training lesson! She is getting to understand that when I say "hoe" and move away that she needs to stay there. She hasn't quite gotten to the point yet where I can tell her to go forward or back and then made her halt, but I'm sure we'll get there eventually. The real progress we made though was when we worked on backing up. I can now stand behind her and ask her to back up with just the whip and my voice. The next step is to have her yield to the left or the right while backing up, so we'll see how she does with that.
After we were done, Moonshine went into the other arena and rolled, and got LOTS of cookies for it.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg lying d.jpg (135.6 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg lyi.jpg (130.2 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg Lying down.jpg (137.9 KB, 3 views)
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post #4 of 46 Old 07-22-2019, 07:53 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: CenTex
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Is that a Pony I see in the background, photo bombing you?
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post #5 of 46 Old 07-24-2019, 11:30 AM
Join Date: May 2012
Location: CT USA an English transplant
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Nice start to a Journal
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Just winging it is not a plan
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post #6 of 46 Old 07-24-2019, 11:44 AM
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Tehachapi Mountains, CA
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You and Moonshine look like a great team! Love Moonshine's color - it's my favorite. Will be looking forward to your future posts and pix!
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post #7 of 46 Old 07-25-2019, 11:22 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Southern California
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So glad you found a good farrier, the good ones are so busy.
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post #8 of 46 Old 07-25-2019, 10:50 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Austin TX
Posts: 78
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First of all, thanks @whisperbaby22 , @kewplace, and @jaydee for the compliments, very encouraging!

Unfortunately, yesterday's lesson did not go as well as before. I think it might be because Moonshine's personal masseuse (bodyworker) got injured and hasn't been able to come for a while (if you want more Austin area equine recommendations, her name is Chelsea). She wasn't doing anything in particular, just ducking in, not speeding up, basically grumpy old mare grump grumpiness. She even bucked a little bit when my instructor tried to lunge her, which is VERY out of character. We're thinking of putting her in side reins for now (she also has a neck stretcher on, poor Moonshine!).
She did do slightly better on the trick training though - I got the feeling she was just having an extra grumpy day. We are working on backing up, and yesterday I was trying to move her hindquarters to one side or the other while backing up. She didn't quite manage to do that yesterday, but I could see a lot of progress. She was having trouble doing one command right after the other at the beginning, but she was definitely getting better at that. The bad news is that we're planning to be out of town for two weeks, so I can't reinforce what we've learned.
One thing that was nice though was after I put her out in the pasture she wanted to doze for a while, so I stayed and dozed with her (ok, I didn't actually fall asleep, but it was a near thing. Moonshine is SUCH a sedative).
I'm going out again tomorrow to do trick training, so maybe we can master the trick then. Bye!
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post #9 of 46 Old 07-27-2019, 09:39 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Austin TX
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OMG Moonshine was AMAZING today! First though, let me talk about yesterday.

I could tell right away that Moonshine was not in a work mood (I mean even less than usual- and I didn't even ride her). Most of the time when I open the gate she just stands there or wanders around, but this time she made a beeline for the open gate on the other side of the arena. I probably should have done a really short lesson right there and called it done, but I didn't, and Moonshine got pretty grumpy about it. We were just having a lot of problems, but the biggest one was with her turns. I taught her to turn her hindquarters when I tap them with the whip, and she does it - a little too well. I'm trying to make her back around obstacles, and having resigned myself to the fact that she won't back and turn at the same time, have been trying to do one after the other. Well when I've been doing that, I didn't really pay attention to how MUCH she was turning, and when she moves it's at least 90 degrees or more. Well I tried to fix that (without much success) and she got frustrated. She even started pawing, which she's NEVER done in a trick training lesson before, we practiced halting a little, and then called it a day. The bright side, was that Moonshine was itchy after our lesson, and my mom got a few good pictures of that (I'll try to send them tomorrow).

So after that day I wasn't really expecting anything great today, but Moonshine surpassed my wildest expectations. I had a riding lesson, but I didn't ride her (that may have been what put her in a good mood). Afterwards I got my bag and went to see if she wanted to do some trick training. She looked up at me when I approached and seemed to be interested, so I decided to try and see if she was willing to do it right there. OMG SHE WAS. I cannot express how shocking that was. Moonshine worships grass over almost everything else. Of course I gave her MANY more alfalfa pellets than I normally do, and I'm sure that helped some as well. She's getting much better at the "Hoe", and I even managed to get her to back around a tree stump. Then I lead her somewhere else that actually had good grass, and she grazed for a while - but then she still performed when asked! She even backed up in a striaghtish line along a hose. I'm really glad I ended this on a good note, because we're leaving for Seattle really early tomorrow, and I won't see her again for a whole two weeks. Awesome day today!
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post #10 of 46 Old 07-28-2019, 07:03 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Austin TX
Posts: 78
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Here are the pictures of itchy Moonshine:

I'm not sure what this is...
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Last edited by Horseservant121; 07-28-2019 at 07:03 PM. Reason: pictures being weird
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