Here’s the easiest way to find out if your horse needs those extra groceries. Feed her the “extras” diligently every day. For months. Then, accidentally run out of beet pulp for a week. Then get the beetpulp and realize you don’t have a knife to cut open the bag. Since the prospect of tearing into the [censored] nylon strand bag with your bare hands or the truck keys doesn’t appeal, instead decide it can wait a couple of days until you DO remember to bring the knife. Now give your wonderful girl a good night massage. Realize that you can almost see rib and there’s definitely less fat cover. Say “[censored]” and “[deleted]” because you spent the all of 2009 fattening her up to a BC of 5.5 and you are back down to a 5, and almost in 4.5 territory.
Her teeth get looked at Monday (shouldn’t need to be done, but I don’t want to take chances with this hard working girl).
Obviously, even though she’s not working as hard as usual right now, winter nights require fuel!
Revelation # ?(who knows or cares!)
I blame my inability to refer to Farley’s “feet” as “hooves” on the word “Barefoot”. How can I possibly be expected to refer to my barefoot horse’s hooves?
Long billets or short billets? I will ride in a saddle with one or the other, convince my self that whatever my current set up is the best and I couldn’t possibly be happy with the other setup….until my saddle situation changes again and fall in love with the other one. I’ll probably need to send my saddle in for reflocking this year and might change the billets…..so let’s hear it! What is your preference and why?
As usual my desire for conciseness is overrun by my desire to respond to comments.
Heather – With my fear of dogs I feel the same way that people are judging me – it wasn’t until I got older that I was comfortable enough to say “who the heck cares if they know I’m scared!” and would ask the owner to do whatever was necessary to make me feel comfortable – whether it is asking a hiker to please recall their dog NOW, or quizzing someone on the phone about their dog situation. So yeah….I know what you mean about the 2 trains of throught. In someways my internal fears are more manageable than the “what are other people thinking!!!!!” (also, as I write that statement it seems rather silly).
Reins are almost as personnal as bits for a horse, in my opinion. So….I tried the biothane reins. I bought nice hought ones to go with my hought breast collar. This was AFTER having 2 sets of $30 reins disinigrate on 2 consecutive rides. I was determined that was NOT going to happen again. Unfortunately, I HATED them. I rode a couple of conditioning rides with them, then rode one endurance ride with them. They were heavy, they bounced as the horse moved AND (here was the deal breaker) they slipped down if I loosened my grip at all. They would slip very fast and before I knew it my reins would be on the ground. I had a couple of near misses with them as I scrambled to get the reins back before Minx stepped in them. Then, at the start of the endurance race, it happened again, but unfortunately she stepped through them before I could get them back. So, we are at the start of the race with horses milling around and Minx is spinning around and around with the reins caught around her front legs and and TRYING to get off, which is harder than it sounds when it’s a 16 hand horse that’s leaping and spinning in circles. Alls well that ends well (I guess), but I sold the reins after that ride for a deeply discounted price to just get them out of my tack room.
I’ve had really good luck with various thicknesses and shapes of rope reins. Depending on which gloves I want to wear and what kind of riding (if it’s going to be mostly one handed or two) I’ll be doing on the trail, I have 2 or 3 different reins to chose from. They are durable. My only complaint is that they get stiff and icky with age, and I dislike the nylon because of the risk of rope burn, but they also launder well and I’m willing to replace them as they age.
Those of you who DO use biothane or beta reins, what do you use? Is it just the straight biothane, or does having that grippy stuff on them help? Do you get used to the weight? Is there a type that doesn’t bounce as you trot? I’d be willing to get another set to try if I thought they would work.