Horse For Sale

January in Andover

Winter has been great thus far.  Between training horses at the farm, I maintain a path for sleighing through the dormant hay fields.  Wind covers my tracks almost as fast as I can make them!  After a few go arounds of taking the neighbors for rides,  I signed Inky,  a Dales Pony up for the Sleighing Combined Test at GMHA.  We competed in two dressage tests and double cones courses.  It was ridiculously fun and we even succeed in bringing home a few ribbons.

 Cones sleigh Sleigh Ralley

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Lyra my Cleveland Bay Morgan filly pulls a light drag on the track as she is learning the ropes to driving as well.


Three students, building foundations for different types of learners.

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This winter at my farm I have three horses getting similar training,  but each horse is so very unique.  Two of my students are not saddle broke, so starting from the ground and working up is the only option.  The third horse is saddle broke but doesn't have a concrete foundation.  It is fun to apply the same tactics such as moving a horse around but for different reasons.

Lyra is 18 months old,  everything is fairly new to her,  so we are just addressing basic comunication.  At this age she is excited to learn and very impressionable.  If I rush her ground work,  her training will collapse in the future.  Calm, quiet and slow is what I strive for.

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Cativo is five years old and hasn't been handled since he was a yearling.  When teaching him to move his body around,  his attitude was "why do I have to do this?"  While I called him out on his bluff,  at 17+ hands high,  I had one chance to make a good first impression.  He went through the normal bag of tricks to see what I was made of.  Including longing away,  kicked out and trying to run me over.  Once this was established as "not an option" for behavior,  he is a quick learner.  

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Lastly, Chloe knows what to do,  but has the Morgan attitude that she could do it better with out my help.  She has a very strong herd instinct,  not like a collie,  but raher that she needs to keep an eye on the rest of the herd.  It is difficult for her to pay attention to herself when parted from the other horses.  Chloe can move her feet faster than Gregory Hines,  getting her to stop and relax is the main objective.  Taking it back a step and ground driving rather than riding will benefit Chloe because everything will be done at a walk.  Her brain needs to focus on one move at a time.  Morgans are notorious for trying to finish our sentences,  rather than working in the moment.

After a couple weeks of adjusting to their new jobs each horse looks forward to learning and gets comfort from leaving the herd.  My objective is to ground drive each one by the end of the winter.  Lyra and Cativo will be learning the ropes, obedience and partnership. Chloe is having a more of a yoga approach toward the whole thing.  Physically she can do anything,  mentally she is learning to hold a pose,  take a breath and just relax.

 


No time to rest, preparing for a Dressage Show

FullSizeRender-15 IMG_0047 IMG_0025Join us the  26th of September at Green Mountain Horse Association as we test our dressage skills at the training level.  Central Vermont Dressage Association will be hosting the show,  this is the finale of their season.   Crystal has had two shows including carriage dressage,  but this will be her first under saddle.  Coco has not been to a show in a couple years.  This will be his first with his current owner Carolyn Graves.  It will be Teddys second show under saddle.


August Combined Drive Begins!

Friday night Missie and I settled in at GMHA.  While she ate and looked around,  I unpacked the truck and trailer.  Later I walked the cones course for the following day and got my bearings straight on where I should be at what time for Saturday.  My friend Debbie Frederick took on the task of being my groom/navigator for the weekend.  It sounds fun and easy at first,  I'll see if she is still chipper by the end of Sunday!  I couldn't do it with out her and I am most appreciative of her endless help.  We went to the competitors briefing and then out to dinner which was highly needed!   IMG_0645

The best part about Dressage is that we get to dress up.  Look how nice we look!


Chaps Benefit Ride

The Chaps Riding Club puts on a great annual ride to support a local nonprofit.  This year is the Springfield Humane Society.  The ride starts and ends at the beautiful Wellwood Orchard.  They are gracious enough to let us all park our trailers and stay for a lunch at the end.  My friend Muriel and I will be taking Crystal and Missie respectively.  It will be our first large group outing with these mares that is not a horse show.  The weather looks great! IMG_0361