Just popping in really quick to say that the surgery went well. Using a crutch at the moment, but I can already feel some improvement in the range of motion in my knee. I'm a little disappointed as the doctor wants me to stay away from the barn until the staples are out. Makes total sense but I don't know to deal with staying away from my horse and the barn that long (about 10-14 days).
There is so much here everyone wrote and I don't know how to respond to it all! I'll try to respond to what I can:
Natalie: I got my own saddle while I was still in a lesson program as many of the saddles did not fit me well (I needed a 17.5-18 inch seat and many were 16-17 inch seats. In addition, I also was not a fan of the type of saddle they purchased for a number of the horses- very hard leather that was hard to sit in). I ended up with a simple Wintec 500 - nothing fancy, but it fit a majority of the horses I was riding and fit me very well. Now that I have my own horse, I sold the Wintec and purchased a Courbette that fits my gelding a lot better than the Wintec did. Yes, it is critical for the saddle to fit the horse, but you also can't ride well if the saddle doesn't fit you either.
KateKat: I second what others said, and that is to ignore the assistant. Listen with a critical ear: take in what points she has to offer that could help you (whether now or down the line) and just set aside what isn't helpful. Talk over your goals with your trainer and as long as you two are on the same page, then you're good to go. Do you HAVE to take lessons from the assistant when the main trainer is unavailable or is there someone else you could go to?
Hopefully I can catch up more later. Kinda hard to concentrate at the moment :-/
I am already going nuts not being able to be at the barn! I can't do a whole lot anyways, so I've spent all day either on COTH, Facebook, or leafing through a variety of horse catalogs and magazines creating a shopping list (Equine Affaire is this coming week about two hours away and I WILL be there!).
There is an open schooling day at a local lesson facility tomorrow (due to it being closed to lessons for the holiday/holy day) and many people at my barn are going in order to make use of the jump arena and cross country field. I really want to be there and am having the hardest time sitting back after yet another surgery. I want to ride!
Glad to hear you're ok, dreamin'....we were wondering! You are very entitled to whine!
Now, unfortunately, I have a new reason to...caught BO in a bunch of lies tonight, and I'm afraid it affects B...
(This is an e-mail I just sent to a friend....)
Am really irritated (to put it mildly) today.
(There are about 25 -35 horses at my barn - 3 barns - indoor - only outdoor is solid mud and only used for turnout, 98 acres of land. BO lives in house on premises, does morning chores, but otherwise almost never there. Trainer lives down the road but has a young child, myriad part-timer barn help - lots of teenage girls...)
I’ve been getting excuses for 3 weeks about why B isn’t out yet (except for his little mud playpen). I haven’t whined – just brought up politely in casual conversation, asking nicely since everyone else is getting turnouts - and oh, we’re waiting for this, or oh, he’ll get turned out with his buddy who was healing the entire winter from a hoof abcess. Buddy was then turned out last week with someone else, and this week it was oh, we’re going away this weekend so everyone will be kept in, so it will be Monday. And oh, we’re waiting for a new boarder (no show)/one of our previous boarders (a mare? who has been back several days) Huh?
At the barn this afternoon – I am usually there in the a.m. - BO was there (they’re going away?), and after feeding time - when they change the horses over, B was the only one in the barn. BO disappeared. Got home & e-mailed BO. “If you’re going away, is he going to be ok by himself in the barn all night?”
They called me indignant. “oh, everyone else has been out all week, and he’s been by himself at night all week in the barn and has been just fine”.
I am so livid I almost can’t see straight. With all the work done on him this winter (riding 5-6 x a week), and waiting with baited breath for spring to arrive as the vet & visiting trainer had said he really needs turnout, I am just dumbfounded. They have horses in the barn that are both day and night turnout, but right now everyone is out all at once, in their appropriate pastures, while B has yet to set foot in a pasture with grass for 1 minute this spring.
Last week new visiting trainer mentioned she is aware of the issues here – citing a “problem with dominance” – and she wasn’t talking about the horses! As polite as new visiting trainer is, she immediately said she knew what I had to deal with…
But I think what has me more upset than anything is the lies. Especially as BO prides herself about being so socially superior, and is so obsessed with feed, and vet visits - but they can't organize getting my horse turned out?
I’m going out now with my pup in the car – driving in from the other direction, and if I hear a horse screaming from inside the barn because he’s been left alone, I’m bringing whomever is next to the gate back in…
Dread the thought of moving the horse – and I am in the sticks so this will not be easy to find alternate accommodations nearby. I’m just getting him closer to where he needs to be, and don’t wish to drive long distances, nor upset his routine - laughingly mentioned by BO tonight as something horses need (ya think?), but which they can't manage. There are so many changes daily here it makes my head spin. Truly low key, logical care barn, where are yoooo?
Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes
Thanks guys. I did talk to my trainer and after hearing my story, plus some of the recent experiences of other clients, the assistant is now gone. It was not my intent for her to leave so quickly, but I think things have been building and what happened with me and another client just acted as the catalyst. I do feel badly about what went down though. I'm just not sure about the motives behind everything because thinking back on some of the other conversations we had along the way, it appears she may have been trying to solicit me as a client.
But, that is conjecture on my part. I also think in some way, however misguided/misdelivered the message was, she did care.
Kate - glad to hear that the assistant is gone. May be quite true she believes her own opinion, but it did sound as if she was looking for more business from you. In her position, she had no business sabotaging the trainer's work. Not your fault. Very glad you'll be staying on the same page.
I went out for gas, and went the back way past the barn. BO's house is lit up, so they are there, and there is no neighing from the barn. I am still so flabbergasted though! Heading for the lower shelf on the fridge door (wine!)...
Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes
dreaming-so sorry about not going to the barn, sounds like Dr is worried about infection but really those germs at the barn are not that bad...
CVPeg-sounds like the sh##t I heard about my horse, "he is agressive so we isolated him for the sake of the other horses". He is Mr. Chill but still a 5 year old, and he was suppose to be with his neighbors except when i was there mid-week and still isolated. No wonder he is losing weight....Tired of the BS from the BO (really just the barn manager).
I don't even want to be around the woman, so now I am waiting counting the days when i can bring my baby home to his "home" barn.
Last edited by stolen virtue; Apr. 7, 2012 at 11:36 PM.
Reason: KateKat: sounds like the assistent trainer has some issues with trainer. Ignore her and keep going with your guy. He is good
Kate- it sounds like your experience was not unique, sadly, and that you may not have been the only one who had been rubbed the wrong way by her advice. Half of skill needed as a trainer is *how* to deliver criticism and teach and not just the message itself. Your trainer sounds like she is probably more qualified anyway to assess the needs of you and your horse. Glad it worked out for you.
Dreamin - Get better soon! Don't rush things
CVPeg - I hope your voice is heard soon. I am not good in the ways of barn drama, but I hope that your advocacy for your horse's needs is taken seriously.
A lot more happened when I have been at work this week with everyone! I'll try to catch up..
Some sad news. Dash is sold. I am really sad. She is going to a good home though, where she'll be happy. She's going to be primarily a trail horse, which is a shame, since we've taught her so much (how to go over 2'6" courses quietly and in a frame and get her simple changes). But I know she'll like it.
Today was my last day riding her. I took her out on a long trail ride. We galloped on the track on the grounds like she was a racing pony and I had nowhere to go... We cantered in the huge grassy fields like you see in the movies. The weather was perfect. I cried a lot and I hugged her. I put my arms around her neck and cried onto it. It's amazing how attached I got to her.
I guess part of it is that she was there for me to listen to me when I got dumped not once, but twice... a 5 year relationship left with nowhere to go but down the drain. He has, during the time he was seeing me, found someone he loves more and considers his gf. He wants to be "just friends." I don't want to lose him as a friend...but I can't hang out with him and just flip a switch and that's it. I'm so torn. Those days when I felt like my heart was breaking, Dash was there for me. She was gentle and understanding and we grew together. I'm going to miss her a lot, for better and for worse.
The only bright side to this is that we can now move forward on Paisley who is happily willing to jump anything and try his heart out. We can do a lot more with him. I learned a lot on Dash about horse training and I taught her a lot, but I can focus on my equitation now too. And...we get to go horse shopping again! So time to start looking...
One last thing as a tribute to Dash: Our show rounds. Enjoy.
Dreaming, glad the surgery went well. Hope you can find some distractions for the next 2 weeks!
Kate - sorry about the trainer thing but it sounds like it wasn't just you.
CV - I'd be livid! I'm not used to different kinds of turnout. Everywhere I've boarded, all the horses go out, and come in, at the same time. Unless there's an injury.
Welp, as for me, a couple of us went to a little dinky schooling show yesterday and had a blast. We all placed really well! Granted, we competed against little kids but whatever! We had fun and the other two that went are adult re-riders too, and were taking their horses to a show (and on a trailer) for the first time. So good experiences all around!
Last edited by spacytracy; Apr. 8, 2012 at 12:03 PM.
CVPeg--I don't blame you one bit for being upset! Is it possible for you to make an appointment with the BO for a one-on-one discussion of the issues that are bothering you? If I were you, I would write out my complaints. You don't need to send the letter, but doing that will calm you and help you focus, I think.
KateKat, if the assistant trainer was trying to solicit you as a client, she had an odd way of going about it. Sounds as if what needed to happen happened--don't feel bad--put it behind you.
Dreamin, let me know if you'd like some links to entertain you. I love the show jumping nostalgia site, for example. There are also some terrific horse films on youtube. (I admit it, some cheesy ones, too, but I have watched them all.)
Spacytracy, I cannot see the pics. I am one of the five people left on the planet who does not use FB.
Pancakes, my heart is breaking for you. Loved watching the show clips of you and Dash. She looks fab--(and I must say, she would be perfect here at our barn!! ) and it's apparent you've done so much with her. Don't forget to snag a bit of her tail as a memento before she leaves...
Thanks everyone for the support! I've just needed to vent, because I am so livid. The barn owner is a drama llama with a domineering personality. I've been walking on eggshells since I've been there, and I'm no push over. But now that the weather is improving, and she's showing up more (sheeeeeee doesn't ride in the winterrrrr), I can see that there will be more nonsense popping up.
Pancakes, I am so sorry... That is so tough - to say goodbye. Hope someone else captures your heart soon, and returns the same to you. I'm really sorry.
Funny, Dewey, that you said that. I wrote her an e-mail last night, then left it in "draft".
OK - headed for the barn for our daily work. Fists clenched. Breathe! Breathe!
Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes
Had the dreaded emergency vet visit last night. Ugh. Trainers had come back late from a show, and as they were unpacking, one of them heard some very labored breathing and coughing coming from a stall. She called the vet, called me, gave horse some ace and banamine so he'd be more comfortable while we waited for the vet.
Vet only heard lung sounds on one side, and an ultrasound showed only one lung working correctly. No apparent cause, but possibly an alergic reaction to something in the hay, or in his turnout. We had a heavy rain Thursday, so there was some fresh grass and clover growth, but nothing that ever has given him problems before.
He got lots of meds; antibiotics, cough suppressant, IV DMSO, bronchial dialators, more banamine, a blood workup, and probably some more stuff I don't remember. Today he looks A-OK. Vet recheck on Monday or Tuesday. This will probably delay the lameness recheck which was scheduled for Wednesday, as right now he is so pumped full of meds that he'd be completely sound for anything up to and including a Hunter Derby.
I am very grateful that he lives at a good barn, with trainers and staff that live on site. I've been riding there since 1983 and have a great deal of respect for how they run their business and take care of the horses.
OMG Pony4me! That must have been so scary for you. I HATE that emergency call, when you're driving to the barn with your heart in your throat! I'm glad he is looking better today. Let us know how he is doing. Yes thank goodness your BO caught it, I also have great ones (after moving from a place where the opposite was true) and they are worth their weight in gold.
Sorry I have been absent for a bit I have been working all weekend which sucks. Have been reading up on everyones lives on breaks so thanks for getting me through the weekend. Happy Easter everyone
Nope, not an Ohio fan. And since I went to an all-women's school, I don't really have a preferred FB school. Although I suppose I do support the Gamecocks. If only because they're not UGA or FSU or UF, and my area's crawling with their fans and alumni .
Have I ever mentioned how much I love my trainer! A few weeks ago, she and I sat down and had a conversation about fear - mine mostly. I have this really nice horse, why am I afraid to ride him. Never really thought about that much, but realized she was right. So, time to face my fear.
Today we had the First Annual Easter Trail Ride. There were 9 of us, and yes I went. Finn is a I have to be the leader all the time horse. Ok, fine, I can deal with that. However, he and I need to talk about leadership. If you are going to be the leader, you also have to be somewhat brave and understand that mud puddles, circles of white sand and shallow ponds are not horse eating monsters.
But, I had a great time with great friends! Happy Easter to all!