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Discussion Starter · #501 ·
Aria's hind boots are here! The right one is a little big, but it's the smallest renegade size so I'll try to snug it up a bit. No time so adjust them before our ride today, so we went with just the fronts.

Hero's repaired boot seemed to hold up. We rode for an hour on the trails with Maybelle the mule. I had the buckled toe straps on Hero's renegades for the first time. Wow is that nice to just close a buckle and not deal with the velcro. I wish I had bought them a long time ago.

Aria ponied along beautifully. When we got to the nursery where she spooked the last time, she was like "Oh, I've seen that stuff before."

Hero walked and didn't spook at anything. Neither horse spooked on the entire ride. That is something pretty unusual in my life. We even went to some new places where Aria had never been. A four wheeler came shooting down a side road, and Aria just looked to see if anyone else was concerned. When they weren't, she wasn't either.

Putting her hind boots on was a non-event also. She took two funny steps and then was cool. I swear, she is like Amore in that both horses were not handled until after 10, but both seem to want/expect/thrive on attention. It really seems like Aria wants me to put more stuff on her. I swear she was offended the other day when I led her out without her boots on.

I think many Arabs have this innate wish to be doted on. 😁
Halla loved attention too. She would leave grain to come and get petted. I'm very glad to still have an Arab in my life, even a diminutive one.

Near the end of our ride, we stopped the horse, mule and pony to talk to the barn owner. Sometimes Hero has had trouble standing, but his pony/anchor stopped him from milling around.

As we stood, I started scratching Aria's head from the saddle, and then she put it in my lap so I could get all the good spots. Then she politely ruffled my jeans with her lips, to let me know she wished for the treats in my pocket. Of course then she got some, and more scratches. She is very cuddly.

Hero is more like cuddling an alligator, but getting better all the time. He just wants to participate with his mouth all the time, and even though he really has toned it down and doesn't bite, he uses his lips as strong play tools somehow. They can kind of whap and scrape you. Lol. He means well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #503 ·
I haven't put pictures up for a while, so I took some pictures and video of Aria sporting her new Renegade boots.

Hero looks "ho hum" in this picture, but he was really just calm. Funny how the light can be in photos. He looks almost thin, but actually he is leaning toward the fatter side of normal, and feeling his ribs requires a bit of pressure. I think it's the winter coat coming in that creates the illusion.


Aria's belly is starting to lift and firm up, as she finally is able to stop compensating for her previous state of poor nutrition.


I was able to get her hind boots to fit quite well after adjusting the cables.


It's hard to explain how cute her personality is without a video. When I was trying to record, Aria kept trying to get closer to see if I had any treats. She always stands at the gate for a few minutes after I turn the horses out, wanting me to take them for a walk or some other type of fun. It's cute because she smooshes right up to the gate with her toes underneath.
I simply cannot understand how someone could have this horse for ten years and not gentle her. Some were talking on another thread about how they call small Arabs or QHs horses and not ponies. I guess it's because Hero is just so much bigger than her, but Aria is a pony to me. Amore was borderline pony sized, but since she was big enough to ride, I called her a horse. Aria to me doesn't meet the height where I think of her as a horse.
 

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She is so cute. I think I will always be a sucker for a little bay mare. Her huge forelock makes me laugh. Fizz's is like that too!

Did anyone ever hear from the lady who put this all in motion, or did she truly clear out of town? That part of Aria's story is so odd, yet so lucky for both of you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #506 ·
She is so cute. I think I will always be a sucker for a little bay mare. Her huge forelock makes me laugh. Fizz's is like that too!

Did anyone ever hear from the lady who put this all in motion, or did she truly clear out of town? That part of Aria's story is so odd, yet so lucky for both of you.
I know, I love the forelock. Amore could never grow one.
We haven't heard from the crazy horse lady, and haven't seen any sign of her.

My good friends are working their pony Milo, who is about Aria's same size and in a very similar stage of training. I thought some might be interested in how cart training progresses. They have a great setup because they can pony off the carts, so Milo can get used to the sights and sounds of being driven while wearing his harness. Little Eddie is the teacher in this case, the steadiest mini.
My friend recording has had a shoulder surgery so is driving with one hand and does not have a spare one for ponying. I'm hoping to trailer Aria up there one of these days for a session of ponying with the carts too. I love my friend's commentary.

 

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Discussion Starter · #508 ·
Aria's harness came today, but not until after I'd been to the barn. Can't wait to try it on her.

When I turned out the horses, Maybelle's owner had put a bright purple blanket on her, with sparkles. It really freaked out Aria for a couple minutes. When I let her go, she bolted across the field. Hero was concerned too, but he figured it out pretty quickly. Aria thought a mule wearing a blanket was some kind of space alien.

I asked Maybelle's owner if she wanted to ride, but she was farm sitting somewhere out in the country so had to head out there. So I rode Hero and ponied Aria. I decided to take them through the neighborhoods for a while, so Aria could get used to the sights and sounds. I will want to eventually drive her on the asphalt once she is trained to drive.
Hero enjoys going on asphalt, it seems to remind him of his track days. He is far less worried about neighborhoods than the woods. We only had a couple small spooks, the first one is in the video, which was when some dogs came rushing out, and I decided I couldn't handle two horses and filming so put my phone away. Some spooky little kids also jumped out from behind a bush, which startled us too.

Later, we went back down the gravel roads around the horse areas, and I filmed the horses grazing where we stopped to turn around. It is a neighboring horse boarding place, they have about 10 horses and we are grazing next to the outdoor arena that no one seems to use.

It has been raining, so the dried up grass is having a growing phase, which is good before the winter rains set in.
 

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I love her neck and mane. I have my phone tucked away most of the time, which is why I never have pictures when exciting things happen. It’s just time to focus. Lol

It was blowing my mind because you had her on your left. When I had my broken foot I tried to put Queen on the left, and it was such a mess. 😂 I pony like I rope, and apparently my horses agree.
 

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It would have been smart @knightrider! Queen is so aggressive that I can’t seem to manage with my left hand very well. I should have started out that way for sure. I have with her made sure to have my rope come off both sides of her, because sometimes it happens that you have to throw over the other side, or a horse is holding a calf and they get their neck on the wrong side of the rope and panic.

I usually do mount from both sides too, but I haven’t done that with her either! Probably she wouldn’t mind… I don’t know. I need to do it before she’s convinced that would be wrong. I struggle with myself doing things from the wrong side. I have gotten on Cash from the wrong side, and Bones, just not her.
 

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I love her neck and mane. I have my phone tucked away most of the time, which is why I never have pictures when exciting things happen. It’s just time to focus. Lol

It was blowing my mind because you had her on your left. When I had my broken foot I tried to put Queen on the left, and it was such a mess. 😂 I pony like I rope, and apparently my horses agree.
I was about to write the same thing. She has an amazing mane. Look how far and how fast you've progressed. It's wonderful. She's so darned lucky! That cart video I have to say that tail swishing back and forth is very cute. The noise would worry me doesn't something need greasing?!
 

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Discussion Starter · #513 ·
@Kalraii, I think my friend is driving in a sulky, and they seem to squeak more.


@Knave, Aria is super easy to pony. In the past I've decided which side to put the pony horse on by putting the horse in my right hand that I think will need the most strength. If I think it will be the horse I'm riding, I put the pony horse on the left. But Hero does not try to pull and rush, so either side is fine for these horses. I always ponied Amore or Halla from my right hand, they were unpredictable. But that was risky too, because you never knew which horse was going to get antsy.
 

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That’s nice Gotta. Queen is spectacular on the ground, never pulls tight, but ponied she gets angry with whatever horse I am on. I guess, to be fair, she is the excessively jealous type, and no one goes fast enough in her opinion.

I dally off though, and dallying with my left hand takes a ton of concentration. Lol. Cash is cranky about it, which I could handle, but she is angry as he is, and my left hand is awful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #515 ·
That’s nice Gotta. Queen is spectacular on the ground, never pulls tight, but ponied she gets angry with whatever horse I am on. I guess, to be fair, she is the excessively jealous type, and no one goes fast enough in her opinion.

I dally off though, and dallying with my left hand takes a ton of concentration. Lol. Cash is cranky about it, which I could handle, but she is angry as he is, and my left hand is awful.
I've mentioned Bibi quite a bit. She was the 13.2 hand diva mustang queen of the universe.
We ended up deciding it was unfair to the other horses to pony her. Even the big patient Beau would get too frustrated. We thought she should be ponied until 3, but got on her at 2 instead because she was too aggressive to pony. Even though she was small. She thought it was fun to kick and bite horses that dared to pony her. It wasn't about speed, it was more like, "How dare they think they can lead me?"
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Here is big Beau, the saint. Supposedly he was a Quarab...? We didn't think so. Huge and built like a tank.
Both my sister and DH rode him, he was the best babysitter and could even take beginners for a smooth gallop without losing them. He tripped and fell down with my sister going down a steep hill, but did not lose her - he fell onto his knees and got back up without unseating her. She is a complete beginner. She still tells me all the time that I told her horses rarely fell down, so not to worry...just before going down that hill. Murphy's law again.
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When my friends got Beau, his owner had fed him on a diet of mostly donuts, if you can imagine. He broke my friend's back, because he thought she could handle the powerful buck he threw in after taking a big jump. She flew over his head. He was very good at taking care of beginners, but he also had too much faith in a good rider sometimes. It was like he separated people into two categories: the frail and stupid ones, and the super heroes. If you were a super hero, he'd gallop like a freight train, jump over anything, stop on a dime. If you were frail, he'd never let you fall. What a super horse.
 

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I don’t know how a horse could get by on donuts. Lol

Beamer is like that. He bucked every ride through his 11th year. Husband put my oldest girl on him when she was 4 or 5, and I was ready to kill him. Yet, Beamer loved her and took excellent care of her until she was aroun 14, when he decided to buck her off. We moved him to the little girl, and he took care of her with complete happiness.

He thinks of her as an adult now too. Lol. He never bucked her off yet though. Yet, it’s not only little girls he babysits. Beginners he loves too. He can tell if they know nothing, and he will do anything for them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #517 ·
I keep wondering why it is so common for people to believe that if they run into any trouble they should never get off their horse. Others on the forum have pointed out how helpful it can be.

Someone recently referenced Darrell Gardner on FB as a trainer with an effective approach to a "barn sour" horse. I prefer to call it separation anxiety, or perhaps a "safe space oriented" horse. Lol. Actually I quite like @Knave's label of "lonely" horse.

I did not like the trainer's approach. I quite liked the quote from one of Warwick Schiller's videos someone posted recently that said there may be a million methods but principles are few.
So very true.

Gardner seemed to believe in the idea that you never should get off. Just whip the horse until they do something right, then lay off.
It worked with the horse. Yet the horse was very upset and could easily have gone down or backward. Horse or rider were at risk of getting injured.

A principle I see Schiller following is to set the horse up for success. That is a principle often impeded by riders who believe every solution is found in the saddle.
Ground work per se does not translate directly to saddle work. But things like feeling secure in a new area or facing a scary object can be done from the ground. And so often you can lead a horse over an obstacle you cannot ride them over.

I don't think any horses are trying to gamble with their riders. "I bet I can make you get off." I bet most if not all horses know deep down they can pitch us onto the ground whenever they wish.

Why not get a horse comfortable with leaving his safety zone by leading before trying under saddle?
 

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@gottatrot
We have a bridge over the creek between the house we live in and the barn yard. I have 3 horses electric fence by the house here so if I need to do something over at the barnyard, I've got to cross that bridge.

Martha, who spooks at most things, crosses the bridge with hardly a second thought. But Penny, who is pretty reliable and unflappable these days, is absolutely convinced that she cannot be rode over the bridge. I can lead her over without hesitation on her part, but there's no riding her over most days. If she's comfortable being led over the bridge, that's fine with me. Some people would say it's bad to let her "get away" with refusing but that horse has trucked us over and through stuff that most people wouldn't dare try, if she says she doesn't want to be rode over that darn bridge, we can compromise!
 

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@QHriderKE I think our horses deserve that sort of respect. I should have gotten off Lucy and led her down that particular hill, or let her sidehill it. I think that any horse who works very good for you should get a say about some things like that.

Cash refuses to step on these rubber mats outside the trailer. It annoys me, because even not stepping on them he throws back over them half the time, but I don’t make him step on them. Whatever. One day he decided he didn’t want to anymore, and I just started tying him next to them.


I think that’s a good idea Gotta- sometimes I forget it, but like the dummy with Queen, why not get off first and show her it’s okay? I loved how @QHriderKE ponied those colts at work!! I would do that if it would fly around here.

Cashman is one I would rather stay on in a fight or wreck though. He is not trustworthy on the ground. He would just as quick run over the top of you if he was scared of something. Queen may be the best I’ve owned on the ground, or maybe I just appreciate it more since Cash. Bones isn’t bad at all, but he kind of drags behind when he is being led. Even scared he would watch out for a person. The others there are no complaints with.
 
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