Hi January! Time to re-cap my December goals:
1. Get a dressage saddle that fits us both.
Well, I have decided which saddle I want - the KN Ouverture Victoria. At first I felt sore in the back because I felt it was tilting my hip too far forward, but after a couple of rides I found it so comfortable, super supportive and I don't even mind the knee rolls, which I thought I would hate. It puts me in a really nice position, and it fits Allie well. I even had about 3 or maybe 4 trail rides in that saddle, with rearing while out, and she put in a big buck while we were cantering the other day, and I was very secure.
The saddler said she was a very wide horse, and that 90% of the saddles he has wouldn't fit her!
The only problem is that brand new, this saddle retails at $4695. WAY over my $2000 max budget. So I am on the look out for a nice second hand, 17.5 inch black KN Ouverture Victoria. It's so pretty though.
So I guess this goal is half complete. I am not getting a saddle until my horse is healed, but I still have the loan saddle from the saddler, so hopefully he forgets about it for another month to 6 weeks (!!) so I can start Allie back in work with it without paying out money for a saddle yet. Wish me luck!
2. Borrow the neighbor's float and do some float practice with both of them.
So we never ended up borrowing any one's float in December, but as you know if you click back one post, we DID end up floating the both of them home when they escaped. Allie walked straight on, but was an impatient shit while we were loading Gracie. (Who could blame her though? It was 40 degrees, she was covered in blood and flies and has a hole in her leg!). Gracie was so good, even though she was terrified. It did take us about 10 minutes to coax her on, but she tried so hard to be a good girl, and that is the main point. Should I count that? They were super duper exhausted, so they didn't put up a fight. I think we call this partially complete. :)
3. Ride/work her on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturday.
We had so.much.rain. But I did manage to ride/lunge her 3 times a week for most of December. We were just getting to canter under saddle (which is when she threw in the buck from built up impulsion she didn't know what to do with!) and then NYE happened and now she is out of work for at least another 4 weeks from today. Hmph. So this goal is a success, despite rain. I did have two weeks off work though, which helped!
4. Get her cantering under saddle confidently. See above point - not cantering confidently under saddle yet, but going very well on the lunge. She finds it harder going to the right, needs a bigger circle and more room. To the left she's great. I will have to start all over again though once she is back in work. :(
5. Take both girls out on a trail ride in the bush around my house. HUGE success! We rode out at least 3 times, I think maybe 4? In the bush. Casey brought her horse over and we all went for a ride for about 2 hours, and they were generally well behaved. Allie chucked a rearing hissy fit because she had to wait while the other two went through a big muddy puddle first, and Gracie lost it once the motor bikes got to her. But other than that, the other rides out went really well. Allie got in a couple of BIG trots, while Gracie cantered along behind or in front. We came across some roos to, and they handled that well. Gracie is the brave one. Allie needs to be pushed for her bravery, but will step up to the plate when asked. Very happy with this goal. :)
- Keep Allie's wound infection-free. Help it heal 100%
- Put some more weight back on her (she dropped A LOT of weight due to the trauma of NYE. They didn't settle and wouldn't eat their feeds until I brought Savanna back. So now I have 3 mares here. :P).
- Teach Allie to lower her head on command. She is not bad about it, just she is a very tall horse when she wants to be!
- Tie-up training with Allie. I am thinking of getting one of those Blocker Tie Rings to help.
- Teach her to pick up her feet on cue. She is quite bad at actually picking up her feet. Once they are up, she is fine. She just plants them though, and it is hard to get her to budge.
Pics are from 27th November (before her coat was bleached by the sun and she got all cut up and lost weight and walked around tucked-up all the time).
LOL!She may be super pretty, but she is a bit of an air-head. :P