Tuesday, June 12, 2012


Finally, on day 31 of horse-ownership, Trigger was mounted, ridden, and dismounted successfully and without incident.  Of course, I was not the rider--my friend SweetPea took on that risk, even though she's due to be riding her own horse on an endurance ride in a mere four days.  However, it went beautifully.

I got him out and groomed him up before she arrived.  I had plenty of time, so I even combed his mane out (again) and his tail (for only the second time since I've had him), so he was a picture of palomino beauty when she arrived.  Last time, I'd gotten all the tack out and ready, and we proclaimed him too sore to ride, so this time, I hadn't jinxed it, and had left all the tack safely ensconced in the tack room and had to fetch it.  But first I showed her how I could poke and prod at his back with nary a flinch to be seen.

Anyway, we saddled, and he still didn't love the cinch being tightened, but was MOSTLY a good boy.  We took him to the round pen, and SweetPea stood outside while I showed off  his new attitude.  He walked in quiet calm circles, turned a couple times, then trotted in quiet calm circles, then cantered both directions, then trotted a bit more.  We backed and pivoted a tiny bit, and he got some good scratches and rubs for being a good boy.

SweetPea asked if he knew how to one-rein stop, and I said I hadn't a clue, so she spent a few minutes trying to ask him to bend his neck.  He kept trying to pivot his whole body instead, but eventually clued in enough that she figured that was as good as it was going to get (or needed to get, anyway) for today, and fussed with the saddle a bit, flapping the stirrups around, etc., and he just flicked his ears like he wondered what we were up to, but wasn't pissy.  She got on.  He stood there, with a mild expression.  She sat there.  He stood there.  We walked him a moment or two, and he was fine.  SweetPea said he felt like a whole different horse than the one she'd been on previously--his back was relaxed, not tense.  We walked him both directions around the roundpen with me holding the leadline RIGHT next to his head, but he was doing fine, so she had me slowly let it out while she took over control, and eventually we unclipped the leadline.

We didn't go for any trotting or other antics, and I didn't get on, but he looked plenty happy to be there, and probably relieved that he didn't hurt anymore.

Yay for chiropractors, eh?  Here is some photographic evidence:

Doop de doo...
Clearly traumatized--check out his eyelids.
Oh, and you've got to check out this video that SweetPea mentioned today.  I've been feeling like a bit of a Parelli-ite lately, doing nothing but groundwork, and she asked if I'd seen this video.  If you know anything about Parelli and his fellow natural horsemen, you have to check it out.  The video quality pretty much sucks, but just listen to the audio and take a peek at the video every once in a while.  It's totally worth it.


  1. You found the video!! Yay :) Makes me laugh EVERY time...

    1. Yup, it was so funny I had to share. I think the best part was at the end, when he's saying that that horse had never seen a human before, never seen a creature standing up on its hind legs, then kind of under his breath, added "well, except maybe his daddy." LOL!

      I also re-watched the honey badger video. Good times. Not Safe for Work (or kids!), but if any of you haven't seen this one yet, you've got to. It's hilarious, and a different friend of mine watched it while sitting in a leaking camper with squishy carpet at a miserable endurance ride, and now uses "Honey Badger" as an adjective to describe anything horribly unpleasant. As in, "that muddy wet endurance ride was totally Honey Badger." :-)


  2. May I just say that those photos of me are totally Honey Badger. Ugh... Need to work on a few things.

    1. To be fair, I was picking out of the 10 or so photos I took to get the best lighting and/or expression on Trigger's face, and not really looking at you--sorry! There were a couple where you had a weird look on your face that I purposefully didn't choose. :-) But I wouldn't criticize yourself too much. It was a quick but stressful tryout ride in a roundpen, not a dressage test or endurance ride. :-)