- Something she isn't liking about the change in saddle. Of course the saddle is fitting me great. But she had not offered to buck previously in the old Crestridge though I thought it was kind of wide and sitting low on her.
- She was being a little snot and wanted to shake me loose and get back home. She does have an "I want to go home" fit periodically, but they have in the past just been turning back on me and then jumping around a little.
- Journey has been eating pretty good during this lay off period. Low starch, but I've kept the chow and hay rolling as I'd like a little more fat layer on her topline prior to winter/ training/ etc. She tends to be a lean horse and I'd like to see her maintain her weight.
- Any combination or all of the above.
Some other things I'm looking at. Tonight I put an onboard heart monitor on her. Though she seems externally pretty calm for the most part, her pulse rate was telling a different story. She is a little more unsettled than she appears, which was what I thought. The part of the trail where we had the hay incident, and the turkey incident really spiked her number on the monitor. Both going and coming back.
I have to work hard to remember that this mare has had very little exposure for her age. Just basic under saddle, a couple of handfuls of trail rides, a clinic or two, and that's it. On the plus side it took Phebes to 1000 miles of general trail work to get as good as Journey is now with maybe....50-100 miles or so? I'm guessing because Teri didn't really know mileage just some trail rides, but not extensive work.
There are many small things needing fixing, and some rather daunting ones. Her hoof issues are giving me some pause. Though she has always been bare, she hasn't had the mechanical movement to build a strong hoof. Her hoof walls are so thin that I doubt she'd hold a steel shoe if I resorted to one. Phebe's hoof walls were like that prior to being under saddle and many miles. I'm hopeful that with some fats, minerals, vitamins, and miles those walls will thicken. It's going to take time. Her soles on the front have zero concavity, flat as the proverbial pancake which is the source of her ouchiness over rock. Then there is the hoof flare at the heel of all four. Some separation of the wall at a half inch flare which makes me doubt we are getting a good heel first landing. My hoof person (LSEGH) is going to do some micromanaging and try to correct that.
On the plus side I love Journey's little motor. She's like the energizer bunny. If you want to trot you need only ask and she motors along. We have pushed the trot up to 10 mph ( about 5 mph or so when we started) so she is learning to lengthen her stride. We are doing that in a sustained way, just working on the gears so I know what I have.
But the important thing today is...
I got to ride. And I feel good (sweaty, but good) about that. ~E.G.