Saturday, 30 July 2011

My finger and videos

I have the most ridiculous injury right now. It is preventing me from riding but not much else. Still have to go to work, still have to do house work.

I was sweeping the stables out and the aluminum (less than 12 months old barely used Oates outdoor broom that was not cheap) handle snapped and trapped the pad of my left ring finger in it, then scooped out a big chunk of flesh, most of my finger pad and down to the bone. There was blood, there was screaming, there was a very quick dash to the doctors BUT there was no needles or stitches (thankfully). The doctor just taped the flesh back down and hopefully it will graft back on. If not, then I will need to get a skin graft.

So I can't ride as my horse doesn't know how to neck rein and I can't bend my finger or risk her reefing the rein out of my hand and displacing the half attached finger pad. I've also had to postpone 4 trims this weekend! :(

ANYWAY Natalie rode both mares this morning. Gracie had an issue. Nat got on and they barely went two steps when Gracie started bucking like a bronc. Nat did a good job staying on but in the end she came off. We think Gracie has an issue with the girth, as she seems to be quite sensitive all along under her belly especially going closer to her nipples where there are strange painful lumps that come and go. We have had one vet look at them but he dismissed it. I think we need to look into it further.

Nat lounged Gracie for a good 10-15 minutes and did a little ground work, then got back on (after checking the saddle and cloth for sticks etc) and did one calm walk circle then got off. Poor kid.

Then she got on Allie for about 10 minutes but Nat had to go so it was only a very very short ride.
Allie and Andrew smooching while they wait for Allie's turn.
Video of Nat on Allie (I can't get it to embed, soz! Also, turn down the volume, my voice is quite loud).

Monday, 25 July 2011

Cold, wet, but setting goals anyway!

Last week was disgusting. It rained all week, and we only got a ride in on Monday night. I had to keep them in the stable overnight one night as it just poured. And Allie just doesn't get how to be in a stable. The last 4 times she has stayed in overnight, she has turned around to stare at the back wall of her stall and pooped in her feed bucket!! When it has been full of her dinner! Why mare, WHY?! Why you so dumb?

This week is a new week though! We will school Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, then we are heading out for a road ride on Saturday around the Chain-O-Ponds loop (i.e. Around the block, the street is called Chain-o-Ponds, how cute!).

Short term I have a hoof trimming clinic to attend on the 29th August and I need to pick which horse to take. Allie will behave better, but it's an advanced trimming course and it's no use bringing a horse that has perfect feet. Gracie has some issues and I think it would be more worth it to take her.

That is on a Friday, and then the Sunday of that weekend there is the Blacktown Gymkhana that they hold at the end of every month. I would love to take advantage of the fact that we will already have a car and float available and take the two girls in the led classes, for exposure. Should be fun.

Long term I want to get out to do two dressage tests. I've been snooping on the Dressage NSW site but haven't sussed out an event for us yet.

After summer, I want to start jumping. They will be rising 6 then, and to be honest I can't wait to start jumping. I miss it, even though I never competed.

Just need to get through the rest of this crappy winter though. It sucks riding in the dark.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Helmets on Children - Optional or Not?

The owner of a Facebook group I follow posted a photo of her son (no more than 3 years old I think, however I am bad with aging children) sitting in a pony. He was in an adult sized aussie stock saddle, was barefoot, could not reach the stirrups, and had no helmet on. The pony was a rescue, and to be fair there was someone standing out of frame holding the pony.

I would usually shake my head in silence at this, as I am not one for Facebook drama (plus I have no children and this seems to be a point raised when I question parenting practices). But I had to pipe up this time, asking where were his boots, where was his helmet? The response from the mother (I assume mother, could have been the father) was that the kid has a problem with helmets. I then stated that if he had a problem with helmets, then maybe he should not be on a pony. The mother stated that she could let him do what he wanted, he was her kid.

I said one last thing to the effect of "That's your prerogative I suppose, but when he falls off and your heart is in your throat wondering if his scull is cracked or not, remember that you knew better. I hope that never happens for his sake".

Of course, there was a barrage of people saying I should mind my own business, etc etc. One person liked my comments. Five minutes later, the picture was taken down.

I may have been harsh, I may have been out of line, but if the next time that kid asks for a pony ride and the mother remembers my comment and puts at least a helmet on him, then I honestly think my comment is worth it.

In my opinion, helmets on children (especially young children) are not negotiable. If you are an adult and don't wear a helmet, that is 100% your choice, you have the right to risk your life if you want. However kids must always wear proper safety gear. I even advocate helmets on kids when handling horses, and when my niece was littler (about 4?) and she came to ride my sister's old retired pony, she had a helmet and boots even for just being around the horses, and when riding she had short stirrups she could reach, a leader for the pony and a walker to hold her leg in case anything happened. She is now 7, and doesn't handle my young horses, ever. Not even to go in the paddock to pat them (over the fence or stable door is ok).  It is not worth the risk.

I believe that a child has almost no sense of mortality. Sure they know that if they fall off it will hurt, but death is not something young kids can comprehend. The parent or guardian needs to enforce the safety rules of riding and handling horses, same as you teach them to look both ways before crossing the street and not to talk to strangers. There is enough danger in this world for kids to get messed up in, they don't need the possibility of a direct hoof to the skull too.

Anyone's opinions differ?

Tuesday, 5 July 2011


  • I have been trimming a lot. It makes me happy. :)
  • I have been trying to get a ride in whenever I can - probably twice a week? They are boring blog material (Allie trotted on the bit! Gracie bent around Nat's leg! etc.) so we have not been updating with these boring details.
  • I have been struggling to keep up with Allie's big stride. I thought I needed to practice practice practice but I put my stirrups up a couple of holes and that seems to have fixed the problem. :)
  • Hoping to get the girls out and about again soon. Not sure when, where or how but we need to settle that so it happens. Probably to the local indoor again for a proper schooling.
  • Also, we want to take them for a proper hand gallop up a hill. See if they can figure out what we are asking for this time.
  • Als is nearly ready for another lesson. I wonder what we shall work on next!
  •  I'm sick of the cold and dark already. Spring now please. Thanks!

That is all I have for you, except for this cute picture of a pony:

( I think this pony might be a dwarf? He looks it!)