Sunday, January 11, 2015


We have a problem, Houston.

It isn't new. It's the same problem we've had.

Ashke is short striding on his right hind again. I don't think this will ever go away. He stepped wrong yesterday and I felt something, but it didn't show in how he was moving. I think it is also exacerbated by the cold. I know all of my injuries hurt, I can only imagine the cold makes him sore as well. I could feel him shivering in the cold when I first got on.

J and I just rode VB park. I could feel the short striding and J said he was abducting his right hind a little more than he has been. I'm pretty sure the hamstring was very tight. We started slow, just to let the muscles loosen and relax. By the time we hit the gravel trail leading up the small hill to our right, he was moving more easily, but I could still feel the hitch in his stride. (I've been feeling this at one level or another since the weather changed).

We trotted up the gravel rise, his head at about the back tire of J's bike (so we don't run over her). He was moving well and the hitch in his stride is less noticeable at the trot or canter. We went up the trail then turned east and headed back down toward the small wetland area, taking care to cross all of the frozen water areas safely.

As we came up on this pond, J saw a coyote trotting across the ice of the frozen pond. This is the second time we've seen the coyote hunting here and I am pretty sure she has a den close by.

This part of the trail is slightly elevated and as we rode along it, you could see the mice darting from the field to hide under the wooden edge of the path.

We rode out to the soccer fields and the ground on the far side of Ward road was much less icy and beginning to soften when we were there. We had some fun cantering towards the geese, although Ashke was a little concerned when they stopped waddling across the ground and started flying.

We turned around and headed back. Ashke asked to canter, which I agreed to, and then he grabbed at the bit, lifted up through the shoulders, and tried to bolt. Knucklehead. Every time I think I could possibly go back to a snaffle, Ashke shows me exactly why we ride in the bit we do. I rode out his fit, then required him to canter side pass across the soccer field. So we tried to replicate it.

As we crossed the sidewalks and returned to flat ground, Ashke asked to canter again.  I agreed and let him move forward. He moved into the canter and then tried to grab the bit in his mouth and bolt. Again. J reminded me that he was feeling pretty good, was heading home and was still an Arabian.

After the spook, head tossing, temper tantrum, we did some very slow, collected cantering. The rest of the ride was fairly uneventful and Ashke was mostly cool and dry by the time we hit the barn. He got his mash while I untacked him, pulled his exercise boots, then went over him with my hands. There is a nice knot on his right hip, just over his bone (same place as always). I rubbed it some with sore no more and Ashke did the "oh, that hurts so good" shifty feet as I rubbed. I gave him some Bute and blanketed him against the cold. 
I am only going to ride Tuesday night and Friday this week. It's not supposed to be as cold this week. I want to keep him moving. More massage. More sore no more. And I've already purchased a wool waterproof quarter sheet for days like today.


  1. Ashke's mane is white again! :D

    Great videos, as always! Ashke looks so good in them. He looks like a Greek war horse, between his mane and the way he carries himself these days. Carlos really can't film and ride a bike at once: the one time he tried to leave one hand on the handlebars to talk on the cell while cycling he almost ate dirt.

    Lily does the same thing: on our last trail ride I *almost* decided to test her in the S-hack and then had a bad feeling about it and just bridled her in the kimberwick. She was naughty on the walk back home from the park and I was SOOOO glad I'd chosen the bit after all!

    Which wool + waterproof quarter sheet did you buy? This is exactly what I've been looking for but it seems like all of the waterproof quarter sheets I've found are lined in polar fleece.

  2. Poor Ashke. I hope the soreness goes away with the warmer weather. I love watching the videos of you guys cantering. He's so pretty!! The canter sidepass is so cool!