A Proud Momma Brag or Why My Horse Diserves Sainthood...
I think most of us have horses in our lives or have had horses in our lives that regularly find themselves on the "saint" list. I'm lucky to have a whole bunch of them right now, but one guy in particular stands out. I competed this horse at HITS while I had a PICC line in place after being released from the hospital less than 3 days before, I rode him without stirrups for 4 months after a foot and ankle reconstruction (before I was even supposed to be riding), I've taken him XC, trail riding, I've ridden him through neighborhoods, he's been in parades. My mom shows him in long stirrup and pleasure (she's very novice and he babysits the hell out of her)...and all while being the nicest 3'6" hunter I've ever owned. He's just one of those gems, but today's events really cinched it for me. I wanted to share my "my horse is a saint" and "I'm a proud momma" story and I'd love to hear everyone else's!!
For those of you who read my "To Sell or Not to Sell?" thread over the summer, this is the same horse. Clearly I kept him (got him leased on farm, too!) and I can't tell you how happy I am to've made that decision!!
So I was having my weekly "fun" lesson on my BIG chestnut TB hunter (17.1 and 1,800 lbs worth of big) this afternoon. These lessons typically include jumping courses of my choice and just playing around with different approaches/turns/etc. So we came into a 3 stride line a little weak (he takes TONS of leg and if you let up on him, he falls behind the pace) and I pushed out of the line and took a bit of a gappy spot. He jumped it fine, landed, and went to collect himself before the corner (about 4 strides away) to do his lead change, when he lost his footing. He scrambled for about a second and I tried to sit further back and help him, but in situations like that, gravity always wins! So my poor horse falls on his knees and nose and I go tumbling over his right shoulder. I landed DIRECTLY in the path of his front feet and as he scrambled to get up, he should've firmly planted his hooves on my chest. Instead, all I see is this chestnut blur, launching all of his weight back on his hind end and spinning away from me before he put his feet down. How he managed to do it, I have no idea, but he very deliberately avoided injuring me. And then he stood there staring at me in shock as if to say "OMG, what did I do?!" He looked absolutely crestfallen. He watched me very carefully as I got up and stood quiet as I checked him over, all the while doing his own "assessment" by wuffling my hair and nudging my shoulder. It was the most incredible thing.
I jogged him out and he was no worse for the wear, not even a scratch on him, so I wiped off his mouth and hopped back on. Now if this had been any of my other horses, they absolutely would have been gun shy about heading to a fence for at least a course or two after. But no, not this one. He marched himself around the course like it was absolutely nothing. I was tentative and rode carefully, but when we did the course for a second time after the fall and he realized that I was confident again, he jumped around like a million bucks, even opening up for a few distances that I wasn't 110% on. I was so proud of him, I couldn't even put it into words.
And after that whole ordeal, we had a quick sit-a-buck and relay race practice planned for our farm's Halloween horse show on Sunday. So I ended up getting on him bareback, going "around the world" and riding him backwards. I've only ever ridden him bareback once and only ever at the walk, and never backwards. He couldn't have cared less and even let me lay down on his bum and just chill out for a little while.
I know a lot of horses that would put up with all of those things individually, but not too many who would not only tolerate all of that, but be completely content during the whole process.
Needless to say, horsie got linemented and wrapped and a nice dose of NSAIDs with his dinner...along with a half bucket of animal crackers (shhh, don't tell his trainer! He's not supposed to eat wheat, but they're his favorite and I figured he deserved it!).
So I think my guy is one saintly creature and I am so fortunate to have such a wonderful boy!!
Now tell me about your good eggs!!
Last edited by Punkie; Sep. 5, 2011 at 10:21 PM.
Nine out of ten times, you'll get it wrong...but it's that tenth time that you get it right that makes all the difference.