Monday, February 7, 2011

Mouthy Mondays

Here's a short, sweet and way too much fun post from Patty.

You can find her at:

Ride 10. Too Much Drama.

Ok, so all is not sweetness and light in horse training. I would rather just not tell the real story, but this is supposed to be the real story--the one you never hear about -good and bad, so here goes:

Tabooli the stud colt came on Saturday. May is quite enamored of Risa and I separated them last night. Result: May is unhappy. Tabooli seems to make her nervous and she is pacing in her pen as she wants to get out to be with Risa.

First Mistake. Tied May to tie rack. Tabooli's pen is close to the tie racks and he came right to the fence and started talking and running up and down. May started pawing, moving and tossing her head. I had to move her and go tie Tabooli in his pen (to a tree). He was obviously also excited so he was pawing and wandering around and complaining loudly.

Second problem: Brought May back to the tie rack, but she just could not relax, so I hobbled her. She was hobbled yesterday at the trailer and did great. Not this time. She panicked, sank back, reared, rammed the tie rack, repeat. That's the kind of thing that cannot be stopped and you just have to wait it out. I talked to her the whole time, and really was just hoping some of the hardware would break, but it all held and she stopped 5 plunges later. I stood with her, decided to leave the hobbles on for a bit longer, but untied her so if there was a repeat, she could move some. No repeat. Sigh.

Took May to the arena and mentally she was quiet--the physical restraint of the hobbles seems to affect her like swaddling does a baby. We did the usual ground work and then we rode--walk, trot, turning, move hip, give shoulder, go sideways, bend to a halt, two rein stops. She had some moments of tenseness, but it was VERY good!

Rode out of the arena and all around the property. She wanted to sneak up on the world--one step at a time, so that's what we did. We spent about 10 minutes riding "out" and she was willing but did have some moments when she was very tight.

Bridge and gate and third error: Over the bridge, both directions! The bridge is getting over-grown with grass--here in the desert! This makes it trickier, but she was game! Approached the gate and stood nice and quietly. Opened and walked through it. Very well done (but I should have gone slower). Got through and then she had the need to back away from the gate (i cant do it!). It took a while to get her back to it and close it (probably because she felt my annoyance). I should have just stopped there, but NO! I thought she should be a bit better at the closing by now (three? tries and 10 rides who is a dope?), so I pushed her, upset her and then had to go back and fix it by opening, going through, coming back to close it and accepting that.

Fourth drama. We don't need our teeth. Got Tabooli, tied him in the barn area to a telephone pole that holds up the barn roof. It is bolted with angle iron to the barn. It is sturdy. Really sturdy it turns out. I walked 10 feet to the tack room to get something and Tabooli wrapped himself around the pole (he had about one foot of rope--go figure), got himself snubbed, panicked and pulled back, and kept on. The pole shook! The barn creaked! The roof shimmied! I started talking calmly, waiting to be killed as the barn collapsed....

The rope halter stretched and got into his mouth, and either he just gave it up or my calm (ha! inside I was saying lots of bad words) helped him out. And the barn is still standing!!!! He let me help him with the halter and oh look there is a loose tooth...Nope not loose. Out. Oh great! Well, it was a baby tooth....but it wasn't quite ready to come out. Broke out. There is a fun call to make to his owner, who took the news calmly, while I blabbered on. Clue I am not comfortable: fast blabbering.

Tabooli is a good boy though! I did a little ground work in the round pen and I think he is going to be a real quick study, if I can keep his teeth in his head.....

Last little drama. Brought Tabooli back and let him go. D##n! May (standing nice right now) and Risa (I relented and brought her out to keep May company) are tied at the rack and a tree. Tabooli headed right there and started getting a little excited (just a little, if you know what I mean). Oh big suprise. Double DOH! I ran over there and got him away from the fence with my lunge whip. He tried to go around me about 3 times and then stood and faced me, waiting most politely for me to come get him. Nice!

Tied him up (so I could move the girls). He started talking. I tossed a plum sized dirt clod at him (underhanded, with arc, lest you think I am a true brute) and it bonked him on the side. He shut up immediately and never said another word until much later when I got everyone put away, untied him and let him go!

So, despite my Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad training Day (thank-you Judith Viorst who wrote the kid's book from which I stole the phrase), the only casualties: my pride and a tooth.


Whywudyabreedit said...

Could have been much worse! Thanks for sharing, I always appreciate the opportunity to learn from others. Strange how we sometimes feel compelled to do that one more thing that will push things to the tipping point. I had one of those moments last summer. Luckily nobody is any worse for the wear! ...and now I know what hole I need to fill in =/

nagonmom said...

I think it must be a defining characteristic of our species, that flash of insight that happens a split second too late, right after the screw up has been set up before it unwinds!! I wouldn't have the courage to count mine, especially the "shouldn't have done that"s with fortunately no bad outcomes.

Patty said...

Hi --I have a new blog site now and post on Fridays.

To see last Friday's either scroll down or over, depending on the options offered! It was about the COLD weather of this past storm. The Jingle Butts

Could have been Much Worse!

If only all the possible outcomes were clearly visible to start with. And yes, sometimes right in the middle it hits you...oh boy!

Calm, Forward, Straight said...

"You gotta know when to hold 'em -
know when to fold 'em...

Great post :)

Patty said...

Calm and Straighforward--thanks! Too bad i was a little short on the knowing when to fold 'em that day!

Patty said...

Well, I cannot read, Calm, Forward, Straight--sorry about that.

mommyrides said...

Great post!! I feel so much better knowing that I'm not the only one who has had a day like that!!! I'm glad everyone made it through safe and only minus one tooth and it wasn't yours! :D

mugwump said...

I always appreciate hearing from someone who's willing to admit when they make mistakes on their horses without justifying themselves.
It's always been the best way for me to learn, hearing it from others.
I tend to trust people who admit they muff it once in awhile.
I'm thinking Patty is a pretty capable trainer.

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