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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, the time has finally come that I'm going to be moving my mare to the stables.
I had hoped the one pen would get cleared on the property so that I could work with Roxy at home, but that doesn't seem to be happening so I got in contact with the barn owner and she told me I was allowed 2 horses in a paddock at the stables for no extra cost. So that's what I"m going to do since I already have my gelding there.

Basic Roxy Info: (for those who haven't heard about her before)

Registered name for anyone curious: I'mnaughtyandnice (describes her personality perfectly lol)
15 year old mare.
Registered Thoroughbred.
About 15.2 hh.
Raced in her younger years. Then became a broodmare and a lesson horse between foals.
Dumped off at a rescue by the time she was 14.
Fostered for a year.
Sold in the spring of 2018. Was mistreated a great deal.
Foster lady took her back and rehabbed her.
November of 2018, I bought her and continued her rehab of gaining weight and getting chiro to fix up her back.

Issues:

At this point, Roxy "tolerates" me so to speak. She has a very sassy, marish, leader type of personality. I'm quite laid back and relaxed with things. So our personalities don't mesh too great, but we get along well enough. However, due to all the space she has to roam, she'll chose to walk somewhere else instead of stick around for getting some loving. Catching her is no problem. And if she's grazing, she'll "put up" with me coming over to rub her a bit. But that's it. Otherwise she doesn't really want much to do with me and doesn't see me as the leader. I've tried to fix this, but due to all the space we have, she can easily just run off and ignore me. And to try to build that leadership with her while having her caught doesn't do anything.

She is very cinchy thanks to the people she was sold to in the spring as they would yank on the cinch and tighten it to the point it hurt her. So she thinks the cinch is going to hurt every time it touches her belly. Once cinched up, is totally fine. She just gets cranky and upset in anticipation of the cinching up and the pain she expects to follow it. I did have this almost fixed at one point but then we had a late snow storm so then I wasn't able to work with her for a while on it so we're back to nearly square one with that. She occassionally reacts this way when you go to put a saddle pad or the saddle on her as well for the same reasons. People before had ridden her in an ill fitting saddle and rode her hard. So getting ready for a ride in general she associates with pain most of the time.

Once riding, she'll walk decently. Sometimes she'll want to go faster, but with a gentle reminder, she stays walking.
However, when you try trotting, she throws a fit. She'll lift her head like she's wanting to rear, she'll back up or go sideways despite you wanting her to move forward, and has kicked out her back legs. She's also gone into the cantering motion while going no faster than the walk and will not listen.
Only way I've gotten her to settle down and trot nicely is to have her moving in somewhat small circles while doing a sitting trot. Rising trot or standing in stirrups makes her want to go faster (probably flash back to racing days or such). But like I said, there's not enough space here to work through this properly with the worry of her or I getting injured as there area lot of trees and fences around and I don't want her to back into a fence or tree and then freak out.
Plus side is, she's never bucked, reared, or truly bolted.


What she's good at:

Very easy to catch. No issues there at all.

She's also very sensitive to pressure. She moves off your leg quite well and can have a web or nylon halter on her and she's perfect. Smallest bit of pressure and she instantly listens. Example such as lunging and then asking her to stop and turn.

Ground manners are good.


Health + Tack

Her health is good. She's gained weight since I got her so she looks healthy now. She's up to date on everything. I've had others look at her trotting along a hard surface and they say she's moving quite well, especially considering how stiff she used to be when I first got her and there are no physical reasons for her to act up when going to a trot.

She is being ridden in an endurance saddle since it's the only one I've managed to find that fits her as she's narrow with high withers. I looked at a dozen or two saddles before finding this one. She has been ridden both English and western before as well as bareback. She seems to prefer going around in a halter than a bridle with a bit, so I'm looking into getting a bitless bridle.

So in general, she's in good physical condition (other than needing to build up some muscles now) and her tack fits her.


Plans:

I'm planning on working with her more regularly at the stables as she needs quite a bit of work. She did have the winter off to just get back in good health.

To start things off, I'll probably work her in the round pen and get things better established between her and I on the ground. From there, I'll work on getting her better with taking the saddle and being cinched up. Once that's completed, I'd move onto riding and taking things slow. I'll get her to become good at each gait before more moving onto the next. So like master the walk. Then go up to the trot, and from there the canter.

Since she also loves to jump, I'm hoping to eventually, as a long term goal, learn to jump with her. There are a few logs around the property and she'll go running towards them and just jump over them quite easily so I think this would be fun to do with her once her and I are working together as a team. I'm in no rush to do this, I'm simply looking at it as a long term goal to work towards with her.

Any other tips and suggestions are welcomed as well.


So ya, that about wraps things up. I plan to take videos of our progress and work with a trainer when it comes to riding since I haven't experienced tantrums quite like hers. I've dealt with bolting and bucking before, but not whatever this is that she does lol. So ya, hopefully things get better. First real hurdle though, is introducing her to my gelding, Jack, who's already at the stables. Crossing my fingers that it goes well, though I'm expecting some type of fireworks just because of the type of personality Roxy has. But I'm pretty sure they'll get along soon enough. And there will be extra people around just in case things do go badly.


 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys :)

And Roxy is quite smart. She's had one vet visit already cause she managed to get into the area where some of her food was and opened up the sealed tote and ate some beat pulp to the point she was choking on it >< So she's only smart to a certain degree lol
And you are very lucky for a horse like that! And I just look at this challenge as a way to better my skills as a rider and to learn to understand her better as well.


General Update

Roxy got a makeover today. Due to this, there are a few things to note.
First thing is that no matter what I do, Roxy's mane gets rediculously tangled. So I cut it. And it's my very first time doing this style of cut. I think it looks alright for my first time along with the fact she didn't hold her head still for more than 4 seconds at a time plus there was a lot of wind lol. So everything was kinda going against me for that.

Also, her hooves are starting to crack again. I think they're too dried out so I got some stuff to put on them to help give them more moisture and build up their strength. She's just not an easy keeper when it comes to her hooves it seems. When she arrived, she had thrush. Thanks to the snow of winter, the thrush never went away until this spring when the ground dried up. It was never bad though, it just kinda lurked there despite the several different things I'd do. And now her hooves are cracking.

Then, the farrier came several hours later. And somehow, in the last 6 hours between her grooming and the farrier arriving, she managed to stab herself in the foot. Or more exactly, along the coranary band at the back of her foot that's gone a little into the hoof wall. I seriously have no clue how she did this as earlier today, we were even walking around the pen, fixing things up and the only thing that I can think of, is that she messed up her jump over a fallen tree that was turning brittle and stabbed herself from one of those branches. Other than that, I don't know what she could have done.

Despite this injury, she's not lame at all. I'm going to grab some ointment in the morning as I can't find the stuff I had hanging around for the longest time so I'm going to have to buy some new stuff. But hopefully, with her being at the stables, she won't be able to injure herself again. And in general, hopefully her feet are back to 100% health too. Thankfully there's no lameness anywhere. From what I understand from her past, she's never been lame, even when she's gotten bad cases of thrush and other such things in the past. So her hooves are tough despite the stuff that keeps happening to them xP

Also, since she's rather bonded with my filly and the pony, I'm going to be starting to put her in a seperate pen during the day to start weaning her off of them to help make the transition to the stables a bit smoother for her.

 

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By your description it sounds like Miss Lulu could be Roxy's little sister (In spite of the fact that Lulu is a Quarter Horse). For Lulu's tangled mane I use Cowboy Magic Super Bodyshine and thinning shears (purchased for the humans but now a horse grooming tool). Looking forward to your progress with her!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
By your description it sounds like Miss Lulu could be Roxy's little sister (In spite of the fact that Lulu is a Quarter Horse). For Lulu's tangled mane I use Cowboy Magic Super Bodyshine and thinning shears (purchased for the humans but now a horse grooming tool). Looking forward to your progress with her!
I use Cowboy Magic stuff too, but the most it's done is keep her mane fine for 3 - 7 days max and then suddenly, as if over night, there's a giant fist sized knot in her mane again >< One reason I cut her mane is because there was a knot that size that you could't see until you were brushing and I figured I'd cut it out instead of attempt to brush it out lol. So I feel for you too if your mare is similar to mine with the mane.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Today was the big day! Roxy has been moved to the stables successfully. She loaded easily into the trailer and was good for the short trip into town.

When I let her go into the pen with Jack, they sniffed at each other for a moment before Roxy started to walk off and explore her new home. Jack followed after her and was crowding her a little too much so kicked at him and he backed off. They walked around a bit more and again he started to crowd her so she gave a bit of a bigger kick. None of which really made contact, but after that, Jack kept his distance and Roxy wandered around. She honestly just blew off Jack all together and ignored him.

Once she met the paint gelding next to them, she was all for him. She squealed when they met, her tail started to get more active, she stomped her feet, and all that good stuff. It was quite something to watch those two as they constantly came back to each other and repeated all this many times with a kick or two coming from Roxy, but none landing as the railings were in the way. Definitely think she was going into heat and was flirting with him as there were times she'd present herself to him a bit. Any time Jack would go over to her, she'd ignore him and eat her hay or focus on the paint. A few times she did acknowledge Jack and they'd touch noses and then she was off again.

I spent a few hours watching them, making sure they got along. By the time I left, Jack and Roxy were eating from the same hay pile. I honestly figured things would go like this since I know both horses personalities. Jack is a bit more insecure and a follower, where is Roxy is quite confident and a natural leader. So it makes sense that they'd figure out their dynamic quickly since Jack isn't one to lead and looks to others for comfort and confidence and now he has that with Roxy. So hopefully they'll end up friends. I think at the very least, they'll tolerate each other.





 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Roxy has officially been at the stables for a full 24 hours. When I showed up this morning, she was hanging out quite happily with Jack. The two got along just fine as breakfast was set out and they'd even share a pile fairly often. They're honestly quite cute together.

I spent some time walking Roxy around the property to let her see more of her new surroundings and she took it in stride. Jack also has already grown attached to her and called out to her when he saw us coming back which was rather cute to see. I'm just going to have to make sure they don't get herd bound to each other. So other than the walk, I didn't do anything else with them as I figured I'd give them a day to get to know each other and let Roxy settle in and adjust to her new surroundings. Will probably do a few more things with her tomorrow and see how things go then.



 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Had a pretty good day with Roxy. I worked with Jack in the morning, so then I moved onto working with Roxy in the evening. It was honestly pretty warm out today so we didn't do a whole lot. But we did have our first ever round pen session. We worked on walking, trotting, and cantering around, getting her to do each properly. I also figured this would be a good way for me to see if she's moving oddly at all and I did notice that while cantering to the right, she did fine and was natural, she was having trouble with going to the left. I'm not sure how to describe it other than she was off balance and and and it looked like it was a challenge for her to keep that lead going. So I'm going to get the chiro lady to come back out again and work on her again. It's pretty close to the time now that Roxy needs another adjustment anyways. Only one or two more over the next few months and then everything should be back to how it should be, though she's very close to it already.


After a bit of the lunging and getting her to actually focus and pay attention to me, I worked on swinging the rope around her, which she did good at it and didn't surprise me. I worked on putting the rope around her mid section too and tightening that like you would a cinch and had 0 problems. So I think tomorrow I'm going to grab my saddle and work with that and see how she does with that. Then, depending on how things go, by the end of the week I'll be up and riding her around. Though, if the chiro manages to come this week, then she'll probably get a day or two of rest or only go for walks or such to give her body time to relax after getting fixed up and such since they can sometimes be a little tender after an appointment.


So ya, today was good. To finish it off, I hosed her down since she seemed quite warm and it looked like she rather enjoyed the water too.
And I have 2 bonus pics that I managed to get from the first day she was put in the pen that sums out how her first meeting with the paint went lol. Thankfully that only lasted a few hours and since then to now, there have been no issues and no more kicking and biting like that.


 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Another good day has come and gone with Roxy. I worked with her in the arena since it was raining outside and started off with a simple lunge for a few minutes and going over all her ground manners. She did great and honestly was so incredibly calm she surprised me since she's normally quite spunky. With that all going so well, I worked with her and a tarp which she didn't care about at all, even when it was ontop of her as she walked around.

So, we moved onto the saddle. First I introduced the saddle pad. Again, no reaction. In the past, she'd pin her ears already at this stage. With that being successful, I moved on to putting the saddle on her. Again, no reaction but standing there calmly. So then I went for the cinch which has been a HUGE issue for quite some time. Well, there was no reaction. I had her tacked up in less than 5 minutes without a single reaction. I was very surprised but happy that it went so well.

From there, I just lunged her a bit with the saddle on and practiced ground tying since she's still new to that. Over all, she did great. So I'm thinking tomorrow I'm going to hop on her and see how she does with that. That is, as long as the rain doesn't ruin things since I don't want to ride her around if she's wet.


 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Today was the big day of hopping on Roxy. She was feeling spunky so I lunged her first for a bit to get her mind in the game as well as to work on building up her muscle tone. Once she was listening again and had settled a bit, I hopped on her. She stood still for me to get on and I honestly only had to use voice cues to get her going since I've been working with her on them on the ground. So that was handy. She did really good when we were walking around and actually did decent at the trot too.

In the past, whenever I'd ask for a trot, she'd try to launch into a canter and throw a tantrum basically and only settle down when I'd get her going in a small circle. However, today, it was a different story. She actually trotted nicely for the most part. She was rather forward still but didn't launch into a canter or throw any fits. She did want to canter once, but thanks to the voice cues, she settled down a bit more and stayed at the trot.

So we just focused on the walk and trot today when it came to riding and probably will stay at that for a bit as I still have yet to get used to her way of moving, and she has to get used to me. I'm used to shorter horses and much different movement than how she moves, especially with how forward she can be. I'm sure she's not nearly as forward as other horses out there, but she is to me compared to other horses I've ridden. But now that things are going well, definitely going to be riding her more often and I'm sure that's going to help quite a bit.

And here are some pics. Unfortunately my phone decided to only take blurry pics, so I think it's time to invest into a proper camera.


 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I've been having a great time these last two days. One of my cousins and a long time friend came to town for a visit and both are also very much into horses. So it was very refreshing to be around fellow horse lovers. And since they both like horses, we played around with mine. Yesterday my cousin and I hauled some hay and took Roxy and Jack out for a walk along a trail that goes through bushes and into town as well. Both did great with this so I think pretty soon I'm going to ride Roxy around on the trail and see how that goes.

Then today, the three of us went to the stables again and ended up riding Roxy around. I figured out my stirrups were a tad too long the last time I rode which was the main reason why I was so off balance. Thanks to shortening the stirrups, I managed to get into the rythem of things with Roxy and we were able to go around just fine. I also got a new bit to try out on her since the last one rusted cause it was so old. The old one was a simple snaffle, and the new one was also a snaffle, but part of it would roll around if she wanted to play with it, though it wouldn't cause any more pressure than what a normal snaffle would. Well, she didn't exactly like this. She wouldn't go straight and often would reach her head down and in general, did not seem happy. I left her halter on, so I swapped the reins to the halter to see if that would make a difference, which it did. She immediately became more responsive and listened to direction better.

So from there, we took the bridle off and just rode her around in a halter. I'm probably going to invest in a proper hackamore or bitless bridle for her since this seems to be the path she's chosen.
From there, we walked and trotted around a bit, getting comfortable with each other before I took her over some poles that we'd laid out since I've noticed she gets bored pretty fast in an empty arena. We also set up one small jump to see what she'd think of that. Anyways, when I rode her towards the poles, she seemed to light up and there was extra pep in her step. We went over those fine and did so a few times before we attempted the little jump that was maybe 5 inches off the ground.

I lost my balance a bit since she did a half jump half high step trot over it but stayed in the seat and all went well lol. But it was quite something to see and feel since every time she'd get pointed towards the poles or the tiny jump, she'd get excited and want to run towards them, or take off into a canter afterwards. So I think she'd honestly quite enjoy going over a bit of a jump course which I would also equally enjoy once we get to the point of being ready for that.


When my friend hopped on, she had a tad more trouble with Roxy initially as they got used to one another as well. But even so, they were soon moving around the arena as well. It was pretty cool to see Roxy in motion myself when someone else rode her. At the very end, my cousin hopped on as well, but since she wasn't in quite the proper gear, she just rode around at a walk as a cool off for Roxy and by the end, Roxy was definitely ready to be done and have her supper. We made sure to hose her down too to help her cool off since it was a decently warm day. Though she didn't really sweat much, I was able to see how the saddle was on her and if there were any points where the pressure could be more or less than it should be on her. And as it turns out, it sits perfectly on her. Her spine was the one spot where there was no sweat which is perfect since I didn't want it pinching her back and it isn't.


One thing that needs improvement though, is her hooves. They're cracking and it's looking pretty bad. I'm putting some ointment over it to try and promote proper health and growth for them, and I've got a suppliment now for her too to try and help with that more. So hopefully that heals up soon.

And last but not least, here are some pics.




 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
I thought I updated this last week but I guess I forgot ><

Last week I had my first lesson on Roxy and it went fairly well. I'm very glad I have this lady as my instructor as she's really starting from the basics and working up from there. I've had a few lessons here and there in the past but the instructors tended to be quick to have you trotting and cantering. With this lady, all we did was walk and practice turning with both hand and leg aids to make the cue as clear as possible. There were a few things in there that I'd never been taught before so that was rather nice to experience. And all in all, the lesson went well.

Between then and today I haven't done much since it was raining for a while and it's not really good to ride a horse when they're wet. So I just led her around, did some ground work, and let her graze for the most part with not much else happening.

Then today, I tried out a new saddle on her. It's a western saddle and my cousin and I hopped on her for a bit of a ride around the huge outdoor riding arena. We quickly discovered the stirrups were WAY too long for me and there weren't anymore holes so it wasn't possible to shorten them. Due to this, I couldn't really go faster than a trot without being thrown off balance, though I did still try at one point. It didn't go well since she did start to trot nicely, but my feet were out of the stirrups (I had better balance and position without stirrups cause of how long they were) and thanks to the extra little bump from the stirrups, she went into a canter. I nearly fell off simply because of my lack of experience with the canter and having no stirrups >< But I didn't and we managed to slow down and get back to a walk which was good.

From there, my cousin hopped on her. She's several inches taller than me so the stirrups were basically the right length for her lol. Roxy very clearly wanted to run and stretch her legs more, so my cousin literally galloped her across the huge arena a time or two before slowing to a canter and doing a bit of walking and trotting as well. Though it was fairly clear that Roxy just wanted to run around and would often break into a canter when being asked simply for a trot. So there was some extra time taken to get her back to listening.

At one point though, as my cousin was cantering her around, the saddle slipped, going sideways and my cousin was thrown to the ground. Roxy slowed and stopped instantly, turned to face her, and just waited. My cousin was fine with a few minor scraps and once the saddle was fixed, hopped back on. We weren't quite sure at the time why the saddle slipped since we had been tightened before she went off cantering (this happened at the start of the ride). I got a bit of a suspicion it was the latigo as it was rather stiff and didn't quite feel like proper, good leather and I told my cousin as much, but she hopped back on anyways. The saddle did slip one more time at the end of the ride and this time, I looked at it carefully before to see what was going on and it turns out I was right. The latigo had come undone and loosened so that the saddle slipped sideways.

Roxy was honestly amazing as soon as my cousin fell off, she stopped instantly and waited for us to get to her. Despite how much she loves running, she didn't even walk off which was surprising but nice to know. After that, we took the saddle off and finished with a few laps of walking riding bareback to cool her off. When we took the saddle off, she'd sweat enough so that I was able to see how the saddle sat on her and it looks like a perfect fit which is great. Just need a new latigo for it as well as some leather hole punch things to creat a few more notches in the stirrups so that they can be shortened to my length. Some days it sucks being only 5'4 lol.


It was also really fun to see Roxy in motion with someone else as well. I noticed that when she canters around, she does flying lead changes which was really cool to see since I haven't seen that in person, up close before. And those two honestly got along so great. Roxy and I get along as well, but it's more like we tolerate each other type of thing. We've never "clicked" or felt connected. More like she's a horse for me to ride and I'm human to give her food and excersize. We get along and tolerate each other, but that's about it. So seeing her with my cousin and how well they got along, I ended up offering her to my cousin. Very little chance she'll actually take her, but I like how Roxy got excited and happy to be ridden with her. I haven't seen Roxy with any real spark to her in quite a while so if I can send her off with someone who makes her happy and she connects with, I'd be happy with that. No idea what's going to come of this though. But it's something I did. I'd loose money with the deal I gave my cousin, but because I know her and the care she gives her horses and the way I saw them together, I'm fine with that. It's not all about the money for me when it comes to horses. A large part of it is also making sure they're happy.
So ya, her going off with my cousin is a possibility. Until then, her and I will continue to do things together. One thing she needs A LOT of improvement on, is her stop. Bit or halter, her stop is pretty slow ><

 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The last two days have been rather interesting. On Wednesday, I hopped on Roxy again, using the usual endurance saddle since I have to get a few things for the western one before I can use it myself.
Anyways, things didn't go great, but they also weren't awful when I rode her around.

I started off with lunging her and getting her to go over some poles. She kept trying out different strides as she'd go over them to figure out where she needed to put her feet for the poles to clear them properly. And since I don't have too much for hills around here, I figured the poles are also going to help with engaging her back muscles and such a bit more too to help build up her muscle.

Once I hopped on her, things continued to go well as we walked around. I got her to stop over the poles and between them as well. I only had 2 set out but it was enough for what we were doing. Since she was doing so good walking around, I figured we'd both enjoy doing a bit of trotting.
That was a mistake. When asking for a trot with a rider, she instantly wants to just go into cantering. We would have a few good steps of trotting and then she'd want to canter again. So after giving a few small corrections whenever she'd try for canter weren't working too well, we worked on stopping and backing up every time she went into a canter type movement. This did help some so I just made sure we were able to trot a few steps, go back to a walk and leave it at that so we ended trotting on a good note.

From there, we simply walked around the arena, practicing turning and stopping since she has next to brakes xP as well as backing up. I got after a bit with backing up since she'd try to drag it out and go as slow as possible. So after a few stops and backing up and practicing standing still, by the end, she stopped almost instantly and backed up with a stead pace (not overly fast) instead of being as slow and sticky as molasses lol.


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Then yesterday, I had another lesson with my instructor. We went walking around and Roxy started acting up like she usually does which was great since I could then let my instructor see what Roxy does. Also, this was while being at a walk and wanting to move into a trot >< But after a few circles and other turns in the arena, she settled down and there were no more issues.
We used the poles again and actually did a lot of the same stuff that I did the day before so I was glad I'd done things that the instructor was asking for. Not much of an exciting session, but it was still progress. Mostly just focusing on me learning how to give the little cues none of my other past instructors told me about as well getting Roxy to remember what these cues mean.
The instructor actually said she's never seen a thoroughbred as lazy as Roxy is and that she's very much an exception in temperament compared to the typical hot thoroughbreds. To me, she's already "hot" compared to other horses I've ridden so the fact she's being called lazy makes me wonder it would be like to ride a "typical" thoroughbred. She also noted yesterday that Roxy seemed to have put on a little weight/filled out more since the last time she was here which great. Since I see Roxy everyday, I don't really notice this but I guess the extra supplements in her feed are actually helping out along with the poles.


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I've also come to the conclusion, that I need to really work at things with Roxy in a different way as well. I don't typically look forward to going out to see her and often think about just selling her or retiring her to be my grandma's pasture pet with her pony (my grandma and Roxy adore each other), and in general, I get rather down and "depressed" or get anxiety attacks with Roxy. The anxiety attacks only happen when I go to ride and even so, have dimished greatly from what they used to be like. But I find mentally, I couldn't care less about riding her, spending time with, or anything. Part of it I think is the fact I haven't been able to go on a proper "fun" ride in over 3/4 years and when I got Roxy, I had hoped to frequently go out on trails and have a good time, not take all these steps back and start from the very beginning and deal with her throwing fits as well.

So to help this, I have decided to make myself do extra work. It's not up to Roxy to fix my mental state where she's concerned, it's me who has to get over a few obstacles myself. And I know when I think sourly of our situation or of her, it projects to her so she in turn, isn't necessarily happy to hang with me either, which in turns makes me more sour xP It's a bad circle.

New plan is to every day, say something good and encouraging to Roxy. Example being, telling her how good she is, that's she's beautiful, that I like her, and so on. Just to get those positive thoughts started.
With that, I'm going to smile more around her, since I often feel like I frown or such and that tends to affect your mood and body language which she then can also read.
I'm also thinking of simply sitting on her bareback at times while she eats her breakfast or supper, or something like that just so that we have relaxed time together like that, versus me being on her meaning a job for either of us. This one I'm still a little hesitant to do since in the past, if you hopped on, she figured it meant it was time go and run. So we'll see what happens with this.
If you guys have any other suggestions for how to work through this, I'd love to hear it.





I also found a quote the other day that I rather like and definitely applies to myself with each of the horses I have. Roxy definitely fits the first two lines of it. Jack fits the second and last line, and then my filly Ren, is the very last one.

"Some horses will test you,
Some horses will teach you,
And some will bring out the best in you."
- Equestrian Co.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Roxy is continuing to make progress. I've had a total of 3 lesson on her so far and each one has helped quite a bit. The first two included Roxy and I only walking around with some stopping, backing up, and going over poles but it was definitely needed as Roxy needs to start at the basics, and I was learning stuff as well that other instructors never taught me. Then the last lesson before I went on holidays included some trotting. The trotting didn't go so great simply because my stirrups were too long so my heels would swing back a little at times, making Roxy think I wanted her to canter when I didn't. But since then, the stirrups have been readjusted which has helped.

Then I left for about 5 days and just came back today and stopped by the stables for a ride since I've been craving it the whole time I was gone.

Today went alright. There were 3 other people in the arena today who were practicing some gymkanna stuff and gave me the chance to work Roxy with other horses around. She did pretty good actually. Initially she wanted to run around after them, but it didn't take long for her to settle down. She did fine with walking and moving around, though was a little slow with stopping, but not too bad. Once she was listening and responding well, we worked on some trotting. Unsurprisingly, she was acting up again when it came to trotting. I kind of figured we'd take a few steps back after not going for a ride for pretty close to a week.

All in all, today wasn't bad. We even practiced the keyhole a little at a walk, and also did some pole bending, also just at a walk. She seemed to enjoy them a bit since it gave her something new to think about.
I'm looking forward to going for more rides though, now that i'm back. Didn't realize how much I'd miss riding until I couldn't even be around a horse for nearly a week ><.


 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Doing anything with Roxy has been put on a temporary halt. She managed to throw out her back and hips again. I noticed her looking a bit more sore the other day so I did some stretches with her and as it turned out, she didn't want to do anything more than a slow walk. So for the next few days the only work she's doing is going on short walks to go grazing around the stables as I don't want to irritate her back and make her any more sore than she already is.

Also frustrating because my usual chiro can't make it out until close to the end of the month and I was unable to get a hold of pretty much anyone else who's more local. But today I came across someone who does more than just chiro work. They also do deep massage therapy as well. She's more expensive cause of this, but she's able to make it out on Thursday. So I figured it'd be worth it to get Roxy feeling better and I'm sure a massage with chiro work will help her feel much more relaxed and happy. The first session is supposed to take around 2 to 2.5 hours since the lady will get info about Roxy's past and evaluate her current state and see what's the worst and needs to be tackled first and so on. After that, if I get her again, the next session will be cheaper and the session will be about 1.5 hours roughly since she can just jump right into the work basically.

Depending on how Roxy reacts to having a massage combined with chiro work is whether or not I'll book a second session. I've heard good things about it so I'm definitely willing to try it out if it's going to help her. But if it doesn't seem to work so great and the original chiro lady does better, then I'll swap back. But I'm just glad I've found someone able to come out in the next few days rather than leaving Roxy in pain for another two weeks.

Oh! And Roxy got her teeth done. She was so doped up she could barely lift her feet high enough to step over a hose xD. But now she's able to eat her food better. Turns out her teeth badly needed to be done since the edges were sharp and starting to cause ulcers in her cheeks. So I'm glad I got them done. And the vet also suggested I start feeding her Step 6 and check into something called myoplast to help her build up some muscle. So Roxy is definitely becoming quite the project horse to fix up. But at least I'm able to do something for her and help her to start feeling better again. Vet did say that overall, she's in good health. However to do a proper soundness exam would have to be booked separately as it takes around 2 hours to complete. And it wouldn't happen for another month or two anyways as the vet is quite busy with being the only big animal vet in town.

 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Finally have Roxy feeling better. Just took one session of massage combined with a touch of chiro, and then a purely chiro session with the lady she's used to a week later. Before the first session, she wouldn't move faster than a slow walk. After, she was running around and bucking happily. However, she was unable to be ridden still. When I hopped up on her, she wanted to go, but she wasn't quite able to. I was recording it so that I could see how she moved from a different view in case her not being well enough to be ridden and I'm glad I did. When I watched the short video, I noticed she was dragging her feet with every step which isn't normal for her. So I was glad I only sat on her for about a min to just feel how she was moving.

After the second chiro visit, she was doing even better. Her stride was smoother and she seemed to feel a bit more energetic. That was 3 days ago. Today I rode her around for about 10 mins to get a feel for how she's doing and she's definitely much better! She was able to walk around just fine and even wanted to trot. I can tell she is a little sore still but not nearly as bad as she was before. So now that she can move properly again, it's time to work on lunging over poles, short rides, massages, stretches, and other things to get her muscles moving and growing to help her feel better and stay in shape.


During the time between the sessions (about a week), I let Roxy and Jack loose in the outdoor arena to be able to really stretch their legs and run around together since I normally work with them seperately. It was hilarous to watch them. Roxy loves to run, so of course, she needed very little encouragement and in the matter of 4 seconds, she went from a stand still to a full out gallop. Meanwhile, young Jack look so confused about why Roxy would just run like that and would run after her, though only went cantering around, never going into a true gallop. He didn't seem to understand why Roxy would just tear around the arena like that xD So needless to say, Jack was often left in the dust as Roxy pratically ran circles around him haha.


Also noticed the other day that Roxy has 2 or 3 white hairs in her mane now and little white flecks throughout her body. I guess she's starting to enter the phase of looking old. I tried to take pics of it but not sure how well you guys can really see it. Also got a great picture of Roxy truly just sprinting from one end to the other in the arena.

 
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