Ugh, those days when your horse is just being a big old Poopie head!
Today was the day for me with my 8 year old WB gelding. He's a super horse on nearly all ocassions but today, man it's like he forgot everything he learned under saddle-he's been riding since age 4 and showing since he was 5.
If we trotted he's want to canter, if we walked he wanted to fall in, drag, not stay straight, be spooky, not wanting to go forward-you name it. I rarely ride with a bat but he got a few wacks with it today to make sure he was REALLY listening to me, after he really tried my patience.
Then we finally get to the canter work and I've got a bucking bronc on my hand when I ask for his departures. I just rode him through the bucks and he stopped about 1/2 way around the ring, but then he was cantering like he was pogo stick, heavy on the forehand and all behind the vertical despite me asking him to lengthen and relax. We go to go the other way and I get a repeat performance. Don't worry there is nothing wrong with his back, teeth, ears or anything... Mr. Superstar just wants to be a jerk.
He's the only horse I have ever had or trained to drive(and I've trained a few) who ever kicked back while hooked and nailed the cart when I asked him to go forward. He went forward after that little temper tantrum and never tried that number again. I've had him since he was born so I know him inside and out. I adore this horse and he's a mama's boy but when he's like this, which while rare, well I just want to throddle him.
This is why I don't let others ride him, he's a very big horse with an even bigger EGO.
I guess they have bad days, too. One day last week, my mare (14) was a big PITA. I have to admit, though, it was a hot, humid day after many coolish, rainy and cloudy days.
We were supposed to have a group jumping lesson, so I got to the barn early and we walked and trotted around an open field, but I noticed she wasn't very enthusiastic. But, then when we walked down the drive to the jump arena, she just totally balked--would not go forward. I urged her on, kicked (with spurs), applied the whip, but she refused to move. I could move her in a tight circle, but not forward. I ended up backing her all the way down the path to the entrance to the arena--it was embarrassing. A few times I attempted to turn her around and go forward--nope, no way.
Finally, we get in the arena and start warm up to jump, but she's noticeably sucking back and lethargic. Typically, she's a fairly good jumper. After warming up to jump for a few minutes, I was just exhausted from trying to keep her forward moving, so I passed on the actual jump lesson, and I'm no quitter as a rule.
I took her up to another arena and worked her on the flat for another 5 to 10 minutes and she seemed better, but she knew I was ticked (lol). Then I cooled her out and let her graze for awhile (our usual routine).
Two days later (because of afternoon thunderstorms), I rode her again and she was her old self, energetic, forward, cooperative.
I think she just didn't want to work in the sudden heat and humidity, and actually, I wasn't too keen on it either. That's the only thing I could think of for her weird behavior.
I'm glad though that I didn't force the jump lesson. Neither one of us would have benefitted.
haha they sure do have their good and bad days just like us.
My seasoned show jumper was feeling extra fresh one day and decided to try to bolt everytime I asked him for a trot from the walk. He was so crazy I ended up just getting off since we werent accomplishing anything and then lo and behold... he was an angel the next day.
I think they just like to keep us on our toes! At least take comfort in the fact that its not just you, horses definitely get the better of us all some days
must be the full moon today! Mine has a little more of an excuse, he's 4 and doesn't have much schooling under his belt. But he does know the routine, wtc, trail ride etc.
BUT today, it was a lesson in: "My name is Sam, and I have ODD (oppositional defiant disorder). What do you want me to do? Yup, I'm NOT doing it.". It was gallop towards the gate, break at the gate, go by the liverpool a million times, freak out completely and nearly dump my mom on the million+1 time.
Yup, pretty much just a complete brat! Like I told my trainer today, it's not that he forgot (I don't think), but he just didn't FEEL like doing it! I think part of our problem is that Sam doesn't realize yet that this is a "job". He loves to work, but doesn't yet realize that this is a "rain or shine" gig!
A couple of months ago I had signed up for a weekend clinic. I was super excited to go, I really like the clinician and was looking forward to learning and focusing on starting some canter departs. My 4 yo had other ideas. She was awful. Like she had forgotten everything we'd been working on. Had to whinny constantly at the other horses, jig or trot with her head up in the air, arbitrarily shy or try to spin. It was beyond weird, she's normally quite calm and we had previously been doing consistent W/T work in that exact same arena with those exact same horses. That weekend was a nightmare, as in it was suggested I should have signed up for the colt starting class instead. I'm sure I, as the rider, didnt help out the situation as no matter how hard I tried, I couldnt help but be frustrated or embarrassed and I'm sure my horse was playing off that too.
The bright side is the same clinician came back this previous weekend and we had some great lessons. At the end of the clinic she complimented me on all the hard work I've been doing with my horse, stating she didnt recognize her the change was so great...sadly said horse has been off work due to a botched hoof trim for a month, so I can't take credit for any changes, in fact there were none, she performed as she normally does when her evil twin isn't visiting. Karma made me fess up to that with the trainer, cause we all know how the next lessons will go if I hadn't