…nothing, C. Nothing does. Especially in your own shadow.
This post may come off a little rant-y and I swear it was totally intended that way. C has settled in really nicely to the new place in many aspects. He’s got his appetite, turnout, no vices, and seems to have adjusted somewhat to the high-traffic facility. The weather is pleasant and warm, and by all means he should be displaying some semblance of manners.
I’m going to preface this by saying I never expected C to stay the exact same way he was when I bought him. He wasn’t getting enough calories to have that ‘crazy’ TB spark, but sweet Jesus on a bicycle, he sure is now. Guys, my horse will not. Stop. Spooking.
Over the past couple weeks almost every ride has been punctuated repeatedly by sideways flying, little rears, mareish squeals, and the occasional bolt. I can sit these, that’s fine, but dear lord is it irritating. I’ll have him in steady, light contact, his trot will be rhythmic and floaty, and then a bird across the arena will take a hop and he loses his brain. The worst part is it’s only for flatwork, which is a solid 85% of my rides. I don’t know if I’m not challenging him enough to keep his attention, or if whatever semi-immobile bird/car/horse/trailer/tree is just genuinely terrifying in that moment, but it’s been something that has made some rides feel like chores instead of fun.
I don’t know if I coddle him too much and am “letting him get away with” these things, or if the ‘fear’ is real. Sometimes I’m convinced it’s an evasion, and others I’m like damn, well if a trailer was rattling behind me and went over a bump and the sun hit it juuuuust right I might think it was a monster too.
N and I are taking a closer look at his feed and we’re going to cut some things out and see what happens. Hopefully, he’ll regain some sense. If discipline, not sense, is the missing factor, then I’ll have N do a few training rides on him and see how she fares with the whole fiasco. It’s getting exhausting, and I hate saying that because I know people with horses who have been dealing with this sort of thing for years, and I know I’m lucky to have such a game, talented horse, and the spooks are well worth the rest of the ride, and all the rest.
So, while it’s nice to hear “You dealt with him well!” and “Nice job sitting through that!” I’d just, well…. rather not. 🙂
So in case anyone was wondering why posts have been pretty sparse so far in February, it’s just been me trying to deal with the extra frustration and trying not to write a whine-y post (oops?) about baby antics. Outside of the kajillion (read: ten) spooks per ride, we’re getting pretty solid work in, so I feel guilty for complaining. But, in the words of Selena Gomez, the heart wants what it wants and mine wants to whine right now (it also wants white XC boots, but unfortunately, the heart can’t always pay for what it wants).
Keep your fingers crossed for me that feed is the source and we can pin this down before we trailer out to our first event (which is, actually, on the schedule for late April. Eek!). If trees and birds at home are scary, I bet Fresno trees and birds are downright terrifying.
No photos because C’s cute face automatically exempts him from any fault.
Okay, just one.