Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Car Wash

I saw this idea on an email alert I received from Tellington-Jones about a clinic for starting young horses. It's called a car wash. I was able to utilize some of the stuff we had laying around the house to create one to practice with Ashke on. This is the video from Saturday.

That was from one direction. This is the video from the other direction.

Today, I put it up again with longer black plastic so that even when it was blowing in the wind, Ashke was forced to let it touch him.

As you can see, it was kind of a non-issue. Tonight he had his head up and ears forward as soon as he could see the flapping plastic. He didn't snort or blow, though. I wasn't able to keep it up as long as I wanted, since Pam brought Allectra out to the round pen and that nice little mare lost her mind. It was stressing out Pam, which made Allectra worse, so Ashke and I worked through it a couple of times and then I took it down.

I couldn't film myself and work with Ashke, and Jenn was cleaning out his stall, so no video. You will have to take my word for it that he walked with little hesitation under the very scary flapping black plastic.

I took down the car wash and rolled it up so Allectra wasn't freaking out in the round pen. Pam asked me to come watch her move and wanted to know if she was stiff in the stifle. I watched her canter and trot and she looked fine to me. Even loose in the round pen, Allectra moves in a collected trot and canter. Add to that, the fact that she is an Arabian, and she looked really good to me. I listened to the four beat sound of her canter and couldn't detect any misstep or hesitation in her hoofbeats. Pam pulled Allectra out and I took Ashke in for comparison.

Ashke was a real fool. He cantered around and around. I acted like I was going to go after him and he would snort and toss his head and kick out in play. Or he would do the Arabian version of scootlebutt around the round pen. I could see the muscles in his back move as he did and any trace of soreness he might have had on Sunday was gone. I didn't saddle him, since we only wanted to be out there a short amount of time, in fact I didn't even groom him, but he did get in a twenty minute or so wild canter around the pen. All of the veins in his body had popped out, his nostrils were flared and he was warm but not sweaty when we were done. I probed and prodded his back when I was washing him off and there was no trace of tenderness. I may ride tomorrow, or I might just lunge him until he gets his feet trimmed on Thursday. Like I said before, if he is tender any where it is his left front foot.

He didn't get as tired as fast tonight. No stumbling or bumbling. No tripping over his own pasturns. In fact, he looked pretty good.

I have to pause here and interject a comment or two.

Pam wanted me to watch her horse move because a woman she knows was at a horse show that Pam rode in. It was Pam's first show and Allectra's first show since Pam started riding her. Pam has been taking lessons for two years and Allectra is a fine little mare. Several years prior to Pam buying her, Allectra was a National Grand Champion in Canada. She is very well bred and well trained. In Pam's first show, they placed third out of five, which is very respectable. Pam was over the top happy at their success.

In steps Pam's "friend" who rides and shows Tennessee Walking Horses. She tells Pam that Allectra looks lame in the right stifle and she shouldn't be rode. She then goes on to say that Allectra is being abused and mistreated because Pam didn't listen to her friend and pull Allectra from the rest of her classes. Pam is now feeling like there is something wrong that she can't see (and I can't see. and Jenn can't see) and that she is a bad horse owner. Pam has told her friend to eff off and leave her alone, that she no longer wants to be friends, but this other woman keeps texting her like mad.

I don't understand. It is obvious that Allectra and Pam love and trust each other. Even tonight, when Allectra was losing her mind over the waving black plastic, she still listened to Pam, didn't crowd her or get out of control. She takes verbal cues and walks over to Pam whenever they stop working the ring. There is no fear in her when she is with Pam. There was also no hesitation in her stride. I told Pam she should stop worrying about what someone else was saying about her horse and listen to her horse. Not only that, but Pam was at the show with Gary and Gary (the trainer) didn't see anything wrong with her mare. Pam hasn't been riding long and doesn't have the self-confidence to be able to tell when someone else is just plain being bitchy.

I told Pam she should call her cell phone carrier and have this other woman's texts and phone calls blocked. No one should have to deal with that, especially someone who is doing this because she loves her horse and just wants to ride. We are supposed to be riding out together on Saturday. I don't understand why some people have to be like that.

1 comment:

  1. The "friend" sounds like someone who is really insecure and trying to eliminate some competition. If the horse was in enough pain that it should be pulled from the show to prevent abuse--the show officials would've disqualified her. (the ring steward pulled me from a class once due to my horse's behavior--because we were endangering other riders because she decided to turn around and head back to the gate opposite the flow of traffic.) They pay attention to stuff like that.


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