The Horse Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I took my greener than green mare to a horse show this weekend - just a little schooling one. She was fabulous. Hadn't touched her in three weeks, and she acted like I had been working her regularly during those three weeks.

Here's some photos from the show. Critique away! I know there's a lot more to pick on about me, than about her.

Extended trot much?

Gallery of Cjmphoto -- powered by Photo Stock Plus

Big stride! This was in a line when she tried to wiggle out of the next jump to the right. That's why my left arm is pulled back.


Gallery of Cjmphoto -- powered by Photo Stock Plus


Not the prettiest picture ever, but I can't really expect her to try SUPER hard and have cute even knees when I ask her to trot over a 12" crossrail though she used to when I first started jumping her. I guess she's figured out that she was making it a lot more work than it needed to be. Haha.

Gallery of Cjmphoto -- powered by Photo Stock Plus
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
The first one isn't really an extended trot. If she dropped her head, she'd have a nice hunter outline.

For the second one, her neck looks skinny. It might be the way her mane is placed. She's got a cute head!

And the last one: lazy! Hehe. Her neck still looks skinny, hmmm...

How did you guys place?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
I'm kind of curious why you'd take a "greener than green" horse to a show that hadn't been worked in weeks? To me, that's setting her up to fail...

Looks like she handled it ok, but I'd prep her for it next time and be shocked at the difference. She looks VERY nervous, very tense, and not too focussed...I like the first pic but like gogirl46 mentioned, that head needs to come down for her to be using herself. She's a nice looking mare, but she needs some flat and over fence work before I'd take her into another show.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
gogirl,

Yeah. Her neck is really skinny. I haven't had the opportunity to work with her that much (and therefore build up muscle) since I've gotten her, and when I have I've been concentrated more on things like steering and brakes and moving off my leg. Working on getting her to relax her head and her neck is definitely nearing the top of my priority list.

Her mane is crazy. It likes to lay on both sides of her neck.

We got mostly fourths and fifths in jumping. She got a third on the flat, and I got a first in equitation.


Evening Shadows,

I go to college, and she lives 3 hours away near my house. I mostly took her to be able to use their nice large indoor to school her because the barn where she's kept only has an outdoor and it's been frozen over for the past month and a half. I figured if I'm already going to be paying a fee to keep her on the grounds I might as well show her. I would have loved to prep her more, but it wasn't possible. She needed to be worked, and the show was my opportunity.

I wasn't setting her up to fail. I know her temperament. She is the type of horse that you can leave alone for months and when you get back on her, she won't offer a single buck and act like it was just yesterday that you rode her. She's very grown up though she technically is "greener than green" (less than 20 rides on her).

I agree that she does look tense with her head in that first photo, that was taken within the first few minutes of her being in the arena, she relaxed quite a bit a few minutes later. However, the photographer didn't take any photos of her later. So I posted that one. I think what made her that tense is the PA system. She's an OTTB, and I think it bothered her at first.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
I wasn't meaning to sound insulting and I can understand using opportunities when they present themselves, but that's just something I wouldn't do. It was a 50/50 chance as to whether it would be a good or bad experience for her. As is I suppose it exposed her to the show ring and introduced her to what you're ultimately trying to do with her - but if you don't have the time to prep her properly, I'd look into getting someone to exersize her while you're away so that when another show comes up that you want to take her in, she's at least accepting of the rider and contact.

I know the temperment you're speaking of - my mom has a mare like that...but she's 12, knows her job, and understands fully what's expected of her. There's no guess work when we get on her. That being said, I wouldn't dream of taking her to a show next week just because I was allowed...she hasn't been ridden in about 3 months, is not conditioned for anything but eating and pooping, and although she *could* do it, she wouldn't be relaxed and accept it as a learning experience.

I realise I'm making my opinion based on only 3 pictures and your own explaination, but she's tense in all 3 pics. For a first show I'd expect nothing less than alert, but she's beyond that. She just needs alot more prep work in my opinion...more in the saddle time. She is a gorgeous mare, and I'd love to see her after a couple months of consistant riding and THEN go into that same type of show. Do you own her?

As for using weather as a reason not to school her, I'm not buying it. No I'm not schooling my horses over fences, but we ride flat work in 2 feet of snow every time we ride. Obviously limit the canter work if it's wet and smooshy, but there's absolutely nothing wrong with schooling a horse in snow. If anything, it makes them pick up their feet more...certainly better than leaving them be.

Again, not meaning to pick on you or your mare...you look good and she's a nice looking horse, but you have to set her up better for sucess in my opinion. Whether that's getting out to ride her more, finding someone you trust to help exersize her, or bringing her closer to you and riding in the snow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,358 Posts
Her ribs do show but maybe she bought her like this and is working on putting weight on?

Not sure how long she has had her though.

She is a pretty thing. She needs some toning and some weight on her though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,082 Posts
Her ribs do show but maybe she bought her like this and is working on putting weight on?

Not sure how long she has had her though.

She is a pretty thing. She needs some toning and some weight on her though.
You make a very good point so
I looked at her previous posts and she had just gotten the horse in Aug and said it was underweight but her August picture the horse looks to be in much better weight than now even with a winter coat. Looks to be loosing weight and I would be concerned.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
EveningShadows,

I wasn't/am not upset and you didn't sound insulting. I was just trying to explain why I took her to the show. However, I still don't think it was a bad decision, and if I had to make the same decision again I would. Overall, it was a great learning experience for her and for me. I'm not planning on taking her to another show in the near future because showing is too expensive, and I'd prefer just working her on her home turf. Like I said, I mostly wanted to use their arena.

Personally, I don't think she looks very tense in the last picture, and in the second picture, well, I'd say she looks more alert than tense, and maybe a little awkward, but maybe you're better at reading horse body language than I am.

Yes, she is my horse. I bought her at the end of August '09, a few days before I started back up at school. I can't board her up at school, it's too pricey for me right now. Plus, I'm a senior. I'll be graduating in three months, and then I'll be back home for good and able to work with her everyday. I don't know anyone that I would trust to exercise her for me that would have the time to do so. I don't like doing more than walk/trot in the snow, but it's not just snow. We have been getting a lot of freezing rain and ice storms here, and I don't feel comfortable riding her with ice on the ground.

I appreciate you laying out other options for me, for it was very possible that I could have not thought of one of them, but I have. I have my reasons, or some might say excuses, for why I do the things that I do with my horse. This is all I can manage right now with the way my life is. I work with her when I can, and I consider myself very lucky to own such a smart and willing mare.

Gigdet,

Thanks. She does need toning and weight. I can't wait for the summer!

churumbeque,

In August, her withers were super sharp, and while they are still prominent, she's filled out a lot more. Same goes for her hip. However, it's possible she may have lost a little of the weight we put on her in between August and now because, well, it is winter and she is a thoroughbred - which are notoriously hard keepers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,840 Posts
She looks alot like my littler girl! I took my mare to a show on her 5th ride, didnt enter her in anything just let her chill and cause she was like w.e with the whole thing I got on her and rode around with 20 other riders in the warm up ring. I thot it was also i good experaince for her and I. She was a pro. walk trot, both ways. No heard bound freak outs, no yelling to other hrses even when her friend got taken back to the barn. She had never been there beore and never been around that many horses at once. I think it was a great thing for you to do, and cause she is young and going thru growth spurts she will gain and loose waight, thats how my TB girl is and she is only 3, turning 4 in April. Good luck in her training! She is adorable
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,510 Posts
While I don't personally think taking her into a show was the best idea, I'm glad it worked out. I also think it's unfair to call her "WAY underweight". For one, I examined the photos and you really couldn't see her ribs even if they were showing. I also checked the OP's barn and I do not see a dangerously underweight animal. I see a fairly typical Thoroughbred who could likely use a little extra weight but is by no means at an unhealthy weight, especially considering the brief amount of time the OP has owned her.

I'm glad it went well, but I would definately advise more work for her as she's extremely strung out. I don't think the show phased her, I don't think she looks necessarily tense as she just does extremely green and not understanding. I also personally don't quite understand why she's jumping yet - again, it's your personal perogative, but considering how green she is, I wouldn't be jumping this mare yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
You sound very busy and it sounds like you are going a nice job with her in your situation. I know how you feel about the toning, I am working on that with my gelding too. Good luck!
Happy trails:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks Klassic Superstar and Beaucowboy4! I appreciate the encouragement.

MacabreMikolaj:

Thanks for adding your two cents in. I don't believe she is dangerously underweight either.

As for me jumping her, I jump her over small crossrails occasionally for various reasons:

1. Because I want to do be maybe a 2'6" hunter eventually, and I like the idea with her getting comfortable with her job over time.

2. It's something else to do to keep her thinking, and it especially gets her thinking about where her feet go and is helping her become more coordinated.

3. It's great exercise and a way to build up muscle, especially butt muscle - which she needs.

4. She loves it. If you don't believe me, watch this video. Every time she approaches a jump her ears flick back and forth on me and then on the jump and then a few steps before the jump they point straight forward. It's like she's got a little radar built in.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
Brilliant...carrying on from Moki's mistake post...

That video she's going a little nicer...that can't be from the same show your photos are from, same round. Then again, a video provides MUCH more detail than just 3 pictures.

I'd be really interested to see how she's going a couple months after you're done school and able to dedicate time to her...early congrats on graduation by the way!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I'm confused. Do you and Moki share the same computer?

You're right. That video was actually from her first show ever (she's only been to the two total). It was around Thanksgiving. I wish I had video from the most recent show, but unfortunately, I don't. But I believe - and I can't say this for sure - that if I had video from the last show (later in the show) it would probably look a lot like this video, just from how riding her felt.

I'll be sure to post some updates in the summer. I'm hoping to take some dressage lessons with her. I think I've done a good job (with the time that I have) of introducing her the basics - walk, trot, canter on both leads, steering, stopping, moving off of leg pressure - but I need help with more advanced things, like balance, bending, softening, etc.

Thanks. I can't wait to be done with school. I've already checked out mentally. I'm just waiting for my body to catch up, haha.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
We do share a computer, usually we're really good about signing out from everywhere before getting off the computer, but sometimes we forget!

I'll make sure to check back for updates on her as you start working on the things you mentioned...I think if you could get her bending more and to bring her head down, she'd look amazing! We had a couple horses that went about with their heads in the clouds...took awhile, but now with them down a bit, they're able to see what's in front of them and they're not as looky, flighty, and have their focus on what you're doing now instead of where they're going to and being in a hurry to get there!

Any plans for college now that highschool's behind you? I hear you on being checked out though - my last week of college all I could think was, "are we DONE yet?" LOL hang in there, you're almost at the finish line!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Oh no. I'm graduating from college - I'm 21! That's why I was saying earlier that I board her 3 hours away. She lives near my house, and I go to college 3 hours away from my house.

I know I look super young in my pictures though. The only thing that saves me is the fact that I'm 5'10". I've been looking for a job, just anywhere. I don't know if you've heard, I think it's a secret - but the American economy is not so good right now, so that makes it fun.

She actually isn't a very flighty horse - despite being a thoroughbred and liking to hold her head kind of high. In fact, I like to call her "unspookable." She does like to look a lot at things. Her attention span isn't the best, but then again, what horse's is? And at least her poor attention span doesn't translate itself into spookiness like it does in a lot of horses...
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
26,798 Posts
I think she's cute. She may have lost a bit of weight through the winter, especially if she was thin going into the cold. I don'tthink she looks dangerously thin, her eyes are bright and she appears to be "perky". From the pix she looks like she was pretty "up" at the show. I think she's cute and with some work will be a nice little hunter horse.

Ps- I betcha her riders ribs show too! *jelous*
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Yup. I definitely plan on putting lots of work into her. She's my baby. I can't wait to see what she's really made of this summer. She's going to get her little tail worked into the ground.

Yeah, they do. *grins* I'm actually trying to put on more weight. Someone the other day said to me seeing a picture of Lyra: "Hey, you know how people say dogs and their owners look alike, well..."

Haha.
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top