Monday, February 3, 2014

it's too hot for horse shows.

Usually my pre-competition regime does not involve bareback riding to the river to cool down from the sizzling heat; but, you gotta do what you gotta do!

L and I decided to treat the horses to a refreshing splash in the river as a culmination to the endless schooling Oscar and I have been doing in preparation for the horse sports which are 36 hours away. In just t shirts, shorts and bridles we hacked for about half an hour to the calmest part of the Manawatu river where the horses waded up to their withers with no guidance from us. Oscar kept dunking his whole face underneath the surface and splashing water over all of us, which would have been super cute had he not kept trying to paw Kiri's legs under the water! He can be a complete monster to his paddock friends...

We passed a stock truck full of sheep, a loud pig, a ram jumping through a loose wire fence, a mumma chicken crossing the road with her babies, drains, cars, a tractor, trailers and cyclists to name a few potential dangers- but Oscar and Kiri didn't really bat an eyelid. It's just too hot to care about scary objects, and they are definitely becoming really awesome, wholesome horses that will turn their hoof to anything from show jumping to bareback treks!   

I did notice their feet got quite sore on the way home, so me and Louis walked the last half way just leading them on the grass. It's very tempting to put front shoes on Oscar before Thursday, but his frogs and heels are looking so good, I'm really hesitant about restricting them with shoes again. Hopefully he is okay on the day.

Our last ride before yesterday, and in turn, the horse show was a mixture of good and bad. Oscar wasn't quite himself, in that he was really towie and hard to stop. I mistakenly decided to work on canter lead changes, which works him up on the best of days, so add this exercise to the hot mix and we had a V8 engine with faulty brakes. I'm praying that it was a one off behavioural adjustment, but if he does turn into a speedy little demon on Thursday, it will be a challenge and a lesson for us. Ribbons aren't my goal, experience is.

I have a lot to write about all of the horses, but should be packing my show gear box and cleaning leather, so I'd better drag myself away from the laptop and hit up the saddle soap..

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