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Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance

July 13, 2008

Horse Karma

We saddled up early yesterday morning as there were thunderstorms forecast for late morning, and we wanted to do the hills dry to avoid another crash. So I chugged my morning coffee and went out all bleary eyed and caught up Phebes. She was a booger, wanting to use me as a scratching post, fidgety with the flies already wanting to bite, and just not in the best horsey mood in general. I got her saddled up, and she didn't want to stand still to mount. In the distance I heard the first rumble of thunder. Doug led out with Cree and we started down the road. We no sooner got past our own place and Cree decides to jump up an embankment onto the grass. He jumps, his feet slip on the bank, he goes down, my husband falls off. I hear a distant crack of lightening and tell Doug....."karma is trying to tell us something, I'm going home." So we ride back the fifty or so yards we've covered, dismount, and untack the horses. The storm that wasn't predicted for several hours comes rushing in, with lightening popping all around. It is my feeling that I need to listen to that little internal voice more often, as when I don't....things happen.

The storm moved in and the storm moved out. It was terribly hot and humid yesterday. After the rain I thought I'd go out and do some trail maintenance on our place. Took a hand driven weed wacker out to the woods and cleared up some of our trails that had stuff grown up aroud them. Want to add our trail to the loop we are using. Then I tilled up a new spot for the irises. Doug mowed the horse pastures. We came in and chilled a few hours and rode the horses late evening and things went well except for Phebes new thing she does...which is balking and refusing to move forward on any portion of trail she doesn't think she likes. She's not frantic, just won't go! So I'm scratching my head and trying to figure out how to manuever around the latest glitch with her. She's stopping, and backs up if I try to urge her forward. So maybe I need to have her back up and back up and back up, so that going forward looks pretty good?

Phebes loaded up pretty nice last night.

Baking pies..........~Endurance Granny

1 comment:

  1. Hi! I've been enjoying reading about your progress with Phebes. I've had success with balky horses by having them back...but NOT back toward home. Instead, I turn the horse around around and back her on down the trail where I want to go. We're going my way still, and it's harder now! When the horse wants to stop backing, I keep her going a few steps until *I* ask for a halt, then we turn around and walk on along the trail. If she balks again, we turn around and back again. The key to doing this safely (because too much backing/incorrect use of backing can lead to rearing) is to handle it very calmly and matter-of-factly, make sure your horse backs well under saddle before using backing as a consequence, stay out of the horse's mouth as much as possible, and give the horse opportunities to do the right thing. :-) Good luck -- balking is such a frustrating behavior, but it can be cured!