Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I know it's been two months since we've seen a photo of Ace. One reason is that it has been miserably cold. Another reason is that while I've taken pictures of Ace, they either show him in a blurred cloud of dust, over exposed in snow or you get a close up of the inside of his nostrils. He loves the Flashbox. It's sooooo interesting.

So we snapped a couple pics today in the cross ties just to document his development and because he was standing still. Now, for all the times I've made him out to be the Devil Child, he does have his well behaved moments. For instance, I've been spending a lot of time on his tail getting him to stop rubbing. I am no longer concerned that he is wormy. His tailbone itches. So, I flip it up over his back and scrub with a hot wet towel until it's literally squeaky clean. He likes this. Then I spray the hair side with my concoction.

He has never once offered to kick during tail time. However, touch his flanks or hamstring...ka-pow. If the camera had clicked one thousandth of a second later you would have seen the range of motion he has with his hind leg. It's more of a reflex than anything, and you just have to be aware of it. I don't feel any more wary of walking behind him than my other horses. However, I don't reach under him.


Pony Girl said...

Wow he's getting BIG! :) What a handsome boy. Is he just ticklish in those areas? Do you think he will outgrow that?
Thanks for you advice on my blog. I don't really question my instructor because I like her and what I'm learning, and this is all new to me. It is interesting to get a perspective from someone else with saddle seat experience, so please continue to share your thoughts, I'm like a sponge- I want to learn as much as I can about this style of riding while taking these lessons! :)

SmartAlex said...

I hope he outgrows it! Yes, he's just ticklish, and still wired for the stallion response. He doesn't have any other colts to play dirty with. I don't know if that would help or make it worse.

It's hard to know what your instructor's reasoning is without being able to speak to her and see first hand what she's doing, but yes it is out of the ordinary to start someone in a full bridle right off the bat on a sensitivehorse. The mare she has you riding is very nice and pretty high powered looking for a lesson horse. I don't know if that's good or bad. It's a great opportunity for you, and if you get past the rocky stage without pissing off the mare or getting discouraged yourself she will be a great ride to progress on. You look like you have natural balance and talent and obviously have quite a bit experience in other seats which might be why your instructor is over mounting you and skipping the basics on the steady eddy horse.

Riding with a double bridle has been compared to playing a violin. There is a lot of dexterity involved. Starting with a double bridle instead of a snaffle with four reins is a bit like expecting to be able to play Beethoven without practicing on scales. You might be able to read the music, but until the fingers learn where to go, there is going to be some difficulty.

One thing that was taught to me and that I've pased on before is to hang a bridle on the back of a chair, and practice with the reins, taking up and loosening. That way you get past the fumble fingers without those bits being connected to a live mouth.

asbntx said...

What is your concoction?? Riot has "itchy tail" he's not wormy, but loves his tailbone scratched! He'll let me rub/clean/scratch it as long as I'm willing. He got a chunk of it hung up rubbing it on his water bucket and pulled out about a 20-hair piece...that could not have felt good!

SmartAlex said...

half original formula Listerine half Baby Oil. Put it in a spray bottle. The Listerine kills the bacteria that grows in the abraded skin making it itch more. The oil sooths the dry skin that made them rub in the first place. The Listerine will seperate to the bottom. I usually give it a spritz of straight Listerine before I shake it up again. It does burn if there is a lot of broken skin, so don't get kicked. My mare has been know to practically sit down if it's really bad. She would never kick.

Pony Girl said...

Good idea about the bridle, and good analogy to the violin. Will keep this in mind and see what happens the next few lessons. I don't have a lesson this weekend, I have to work and I'm bummed because I really look forward to them! ;)
I've heard Listerine from my sister's trainer that works well for itchies, good reminder!