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One Step at a Time

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  • One Step at a Time

    Hey there, my fellow equestrians!

    So I made a post here a few days/week ago about potentially getting a new horse. There seemed to be a lot of interest in the gelding and some people were wanting to get updates and such, so I figured I'd make a thread to track my progress with guy and you guys can follow along if you want.

    As a starting point, this is the current horse info:
    - 2 to 3 years old
    - Gelding (gelded last fall)
    - unknown breed
    - 13.2 - 14 hh range
    - sat in a field with a young colt all winter
    - hard to catch
    - doesn't trust people
    - very little ground work done
    - has had a saddle on and a person sit on him but no ride
    - picks up his feet but not for long
    - tense when touch his neck or further along his body
    - likes being rubbed on the forehead
    - won't let you touch his ears
    - Been passed around to 3 different people already, I will be person #4
    - Hasn't had his feet trimmed all winter
    - A bit of a stocky build, short neck, short back, no wither definition

    This gelding will be arriving at the stables tomorrow around 7pm and I can't wait!
    I'm still working on coming up with a name for him, but I've narrowed it down to Hunter, Jasper, Prince, and Ace. Though so far, I'm leaning towards Hunter. But I'll wait to make my finally decision until I meet him again since being around them in person seems to help in the naming process.

    Attached are pics of the stables. I don't have any of the outside yet, but I'll get that tomorrow. He's going to be kept in an outdoor paddock to try to make him as comfortable as possible since he's not used to being around stables at all in general.

    I also decided to draw a pic of all my horses together, along with my grandma's little pony who hangs out with them. Can't wait until I have my own land and can have them all running around together.
    I also find it rather interesting that my mare, Roxy, is also a bay, but she's several shades lighter than this new guy.
    And if you're wondering about the horses I drew, Smokey is the grey pony, gelding, unknown breed, 6 years old. Roxy is the lighter bay, 15.2 hh, 15 year old thoroughbred mare. Ren is a yearling, came from a feral band, around 12 hh currently. And then the new guy is the darker bay running around.

  • #2
    Ok make sure the new guy doesn't kick your horses. Hopefully he'll settle right in but be careful.
    dont I owe you a dribble? Send your PayPal addy to


    • Original Poster

      Originally posted by cloudyandcallie View Post
      Ok make sure the new guy doesn't kick your horses. Hopefully he'll settle right in but be careful.
      dont I owe you a dribble? Send your PayPal addy to
      He's being put into his own paddock so there's no worry about him kicking the others or the others kicking him
      And what exactly is a dribble? And I appreciate the thought, but you don't have to send me anything.


      • #4
        Cash is a dribble. Never turn down money.


        • #5
          Originally posted by cloudyandcallie View Post
          Cash is a dribble. Never turn down money.
          Just say "thank you" to cloudyandcallie.


          • #6
            Yes I love new pony journeys!!


            • #7
              Originally posted by Wild at Heart View Post
              Hey there, my fellow equestrians!

              So I made a post here a few days/week ago about potentially getting a new horse. There seemed to be a lot of interest in the gelding and some people were wanting to get updates and such, so I figured I'd make a thread to track my progress with guy and you guys can follow along if you want.

              I'm still working on coming up with a name for him, but I've narrowed it down to Hunter, Jasper, Prince, and Ace. Though so far, I'm leaning towards Hunter. But I'll wait to make my finally decision until I meet him again since being around them in person seems to help in the naming process.

              I briefly thought that you named him Guy. Of the ones you listed I like Hunter or Ace.

              Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)


              • #8
                Good luck with him! I look forward to some great updates.


                • Original Poster

                  It has finally happened!
                  The new guy has arrived

                  He did fairly well being tied up for a few minutes as I got things sorted out with the barn owner, though he was definitely a bit nervous and anxious with being in a new place, but he honestly was a lot calmer and did much better than I expected. When I led him over to his new pen, he was walking a little fast, but listened when I told him "easy" and never went too far ahead of me. A time or two, he did move far enough ahead that my shoulder was in line with the middle of his neck, but he never went further, and that was with me walking him with a very slack rope as well. I basically acted like he would behave himself, remained calm, and he did indeed behave himself.

                  Once in the pen, I took off his halter and let him go wander around. I thought that he would start running around like most horses do once they're let go in a new area, but he actually just walked around, sniffing the ground, fence, and looking around with his head held high. He wandered over to me a few times and touched my hand with his nose and accepted the occassional rub as well. With him in the pen, I then moved on to storing the hay and doing the last bit of stuff needed for boarding him there. But once that was all done and dealt with, I headed back to his paddock.

                  I also noticed now that we are on more even ground, that he's taller than I first thought. I originally thought he was around 13.3 hh roughly since he looked shorter than the 14 hh I've been around before. However, now that we were on solid ground, I think he's actually 14 hh. I'll measure him once he's settled down and trusts me enough to have a measuring tape around him.

                  Anyways, so I hung out with him for a bit after I was done dealing with everything else. He often came over to check me out and even followed me a bit at times. So I don't think it's going to take much for him to bond with me and get him fine with being caught. I was kind of surprised with how often he came over to me and would sniff me. With the way his last owner spoke of him, it sounded like she could never get very close to him, and yet he frequently came over to me today. But I also remained calmed and invited him in at different times and I think me being as calm as I was, helped him to relax as well. I did see him trot along the fence at one point, and his trot looks really nice. Can't wait until we get to the point that I can start riding him and see just nice his trot really is. But we're still a long ways off from that.

                  So, that's about it for day one. I got some videos of him that I'll put together and share later on, but in the mean time, here's some pics I got from today
                  Also, current guess on his breed is Morgan x Fjord or Haflinger. I looked up pics of these breeds and he looks very much like he may be a cross between them.

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                  • #10
                    Great news!
                    If thou hast a sorrow, tell it not to the arrow, tell it to thy saddlebow, and ride on, singing. -- King Alfred the Great


                    • #11
                      Cute guy! Best of luck with him. Those tippy ears do say Morgan or Arab in there to me.


                      • #12
                        Thank you for sharing your story, I will be sure to follow. It sounds like you know what you are doing and he is in good hands. Hopefully your progress with him will be as successful as it has been so far. He is lucky to have found you.


                        • #13
                          I could definitely see Morgan in him. He is so cute! Excited to hear how it goes!


                          • Original Poster

                            Well, it's official. I've only had him for exactlyl 24 hours now and I'm in love xD

                            This guy is just blowing me away! With what I'd heard about him and the that I saw of him the first time when I initially met him, I expected to have a bit of a wild horse on my hands. I was fully prepared to be dealing with a horse that would run around, be all anxious and nervous, and not let me near him when loose. And I gotta say, he's pretty much the exact opposite of that.

                            I headed out to feed him and gave myself enough time that I'd be able to hang out with him for 45 mins to an hour before I'd have to head to work. Well, he came over to greet me by the fence, though when I entered the pen, he didn't really want to be touched initially. So I just stood by the fence and let him come to me, rather than me chase him which is something new to him as in the past, it's always been that people have gone after him. But he seems to naturally be very curious, so after standing on his own for a bit, he started to walk over and stretched out his neck. I lifted my hand a bit and he bumped his nose on my hand and sniffed and then just stood next to me.

                            By the time I left, I was able to rub his face and his neck. Though I noticed that every time I'd go to touch his him, he'd tense up. But as soon as I actually made contact and simply gently pet him, he'd relax and lower his head again. I took my time though, and didn't push the contact on him. He enjoyed it when I pet him, even found a spot or two that made him want to stretch out his head and wiggle his top lip a little lol. It was just the few seconds before my hand would make contact with him that he'd tense up at. So i'm kind of wondering what's happened that would make him tense up at the thought of a touch.

                            He greeted me again when he saw him coming, though he actually came over sooner than he had in the morning. I think he's starting to recognize me. Once in the pen, I was able to touch and rub his forehead without an issue. I walked around his pen and he'd follow me at times. And if I walked in a circle around him, he'd pivot to make sure both eyes were on me the whole time. If I moved off somewhere and stood there, then he'd walk over and touch my arm or my back lightly with his nose, keeping his head lowered and relaxed.
                            At one point, when I was asking him to follow me, he did for half a circle, and then he decided something at the fence line was more interesting and wandered off. So I gave one soft cluck and made a small motion with hands to get him moving away. He instantly trotted off, so I released the pressure and as I started to turn, he turned a little and looked at me. Keeping this going, I reached out hand as though grabbing an invisible lead rope, and continued to move in my small circle until my back was to him and I started to slowly walk away. Well, as soon as I'd reached out to him and walked away, he started following. And to give you a better picture of this, when I reached out to him for a moment like that, he was a good 8 - 10 feet away from. After that, he remained much more aware of me and followed me much better.

                            Things didn't stop there.
                            I went on and worked on rubbing his neck again and he even relaxed so much he was on the verge of dozing off, so then I worked on running my hands along his shoulders, back, and rump. He stood there nicely for me the whole time. With him doing so well with this, I decided it was time to bring in the halter and lead rope since he seemed to be ready. So I grabbed them, and held them in my left hand. He became a little more nervous again, so I just continued to pet him with my right hand since the halter wasn't in it. It took him a little bit to relax with that, but once he did, I worked it up so that he sniffed the halter. At first, as soon as I brought the halter closer, he'd start backing up. So I just held it out a little and he came over to sniff it and wiggle his lip over it. Since he did good with that, I walked away. Well, he decided to follow, so we repeated this little game of catch the halter until I was able to pet his forehead while holding the halter in the same hand.

                            We continued to slowly build things up this way until I was able to touch his neck with the halter. This was the big step as he resisted this a bit more, but the biggest reaction he had was just backing up and lifting his head a bit. No giraffe impressions with lifting his head though, and his backing up wasn't even all that fast. I feel like he expected me to just "pounce" on him so to speak to get the halter on, but since I just walked with him as calm as could be and not adding any extra pressure, he in turn, didn't freak out any more than that. And once he stood still for a few seconds, I walked away.

                            We did a lot of this, but eventually it got the point I could pet either side of his head and neck with the halter. Then I moved to wrapping the string around his neck and rubbing him with it like that and walking off. once it got to the point that he was fine with that, I took the next step forward and actually put the halter on him. With the halter on, I made sure to give him a lot of praise and then take it off again and give him a bit of a break. I was able to halter him again a few minutes later and have that go over even better and even led him around a bit in the pen. He didn't do great with following, but he wasn't awful either. But i kept the walking to a minnimum as I didn't want to push things too far for our first day. So after maybe a minute of doing a little bit of walking, I took the halter off again. I was quite pleased and happy when he actually stayed by me even when I took the halter off.

                            For the last few minutes I was there, I just stood with him. He seemed to want some contact, so I gently rested my hand on his face. He leaned into my hand and I closed my eyes, just relaxing in the calm, quiet moment. I could physically feel some of my anxiety and such from the day just fall away. I could feel his head drooping and him almost fully leaning his head right into my hand. When I opened my eyes and looked at him, he was practically asleep with how calm he was. It was really quite the experience to feel his calm and mine just kind of flowing together. It may sound silly or crazy, but it was a really nice bonding moment.

                            I'm failing on my name hunt for him. I tried a few names, but none are working. I've figured he needs a good, strong, noble type of name. But it sure is hard finding one that suits him. Hopefully it doesn't take too much longer until i get one picked out. Also I got him a red halter, as the store was out of other colors unless I wanted to go with nylon one, then I could have any color of the rainbow lol. But i think red looks rather nice on him actually.

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                            • #15
                              You did good, grasshopper!

                              Wonderful start, no wonder you fell in love heads over heels for him.

                              Don't despair if at some time he may backtrack a bit, but that was such an awesome start, bet you and him both have sweet dreams tonight.

                              He really hit the jackpot with you.


                              • #16
                                Name suggestion: Samuel. As in "Samuel L. Jackson."
                                “A man convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still.”


                                • #17
                                  Name suggestions:


                                  Bet you will find one yourself of several you call him as you talk to him.
                                  Some times it takes a bit before a name really sticks.

                                  My horse came with a not so nice name, but it was his name, so we used it.
                                  Over time, that name morphed into what we call him today, that he seems to like.


                                  • #18
                                    For a name, how about "Odin"? Ancient warrier of Norse mythology.


                                    • #19
                                      He is so lucky to have ended up with you.
                                      It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.


                                      • #20
                                        Name suggestions:

                                        Roosevelt (lol)
                                        Neo (just watched the Matrix)