Saturday, October 1, 2011

awesome day!

Me and Shyloh had the best day ever! I spent ten hours with my pony and we did some amazing bonding!

I got to the barn early and helped Kathy feed horses and muck stalls. The horses have been staying inside due to the rain and overall nastiness of the weather, so they were pretty anxious to stretch their legs. We turned out two at a time into the arena while we mucked stalls. Barn work is hard work! I am so sore!

As soon as I got to the barn, I took Shyloh inside. I put her in an empty stall to eat her breakfast hay and supplements and to let the mud dry. One of the horses that was on equestrian team left (season is over), so there was an empty stall. 

Eventually, it was time to clean the stall Shy was in, so we put her in the arena with her friend, Forseti. Then other boarders started coming to the barn to work their horses, so Sandy and I put Shy and Forseti out to graze. They get along so well! 
I did not want to put Shy back outside with Caesar (he was moving inside later in the day), because he is such a bully to her, so when we brought them in, I put Shy in another empty stall. Shy checked overy square inch of that stall and discovered an apple treat! But soon, she was sleepy. She let me hold her head and was falling asleep while I pet her forelock. It was the cutest thing ever! She was relaxing her head so much that it was getting heavy in my arms! She "came to" then I let her go and I sat on a stool outside the stall and chilled with her while she relaxed.
Yummy toy!
Tired muddy girl!
Sleepy time
When nap time was over, I groomed Shy. The mud was dry so it came off of her pretty easily but it still took forever to brush her! She was so dirty! I made sure to brush her front legs really good so I could put her new splint boots on her. We were going to work on jumping!
New boots!
I don't think she has ever has any kind of boots on her legs before. . . she was walking funny at first! It was a little like when I put socks on the dogs and have them walk, hilarious! 

I set up some poles to walk/trot over for practice and I set up a little jump. We went in to the arena to warm up and began walking over poles. 

Then Terry came to the barn. She let Resy loose in the arena so he could stretch his legs because he did not get a chance to earlier. Resy and Terry played around a little bit and Shyloh just watched. She must have gotten tired of watching because she started walking over the poles on her own *without any instruction from me)! She never did that before! I was so proud of her. But then she took it one step further. . .she walked over the jump all by herself! It was pretty cool to see her do that! 

When they left, we continued to practice the walk and the trot over the poles. Shy is getting so good at trotting next to me! All it takes now is a few clucks and she is trotting! Such an improvement from before when I needed a crop to get her moving!
Little jump!
Next it was time to try the jump. We walked over it a few times, then worked the jump at the trot. The first time, Shy balked, but then she stepped over it. We tried again. This time, she tried to jump a little, but hit her hoof. But the next time, she went over! Amazing! We even got the the point were I would be running next to her and before the jump, I took unclipped her lead rope so she would jump over on her own! Shy got lots of praise, she was just great! We are on our way to goal #2 of free jumping!

After jumping, I opened a side arena door. This is why Shyloh is going to continue living outside. . .she really loves it!
Ahhh. . . 
She spent almost the whole day inside, but the minute I opened those arena doors, she went straight to the fresh air and had the happiest look about her. Everything in her being said that she wanted to be outside, with the fresh air and breeze and mud and everything that outside means!

Before I put her back outside (minus Caesar), I cleaned her muddy tail, braided it, and put it up so it does not drag in the mud. What a great day with Shyloh! We are really bonding. She comes to me now; I have developed a signal that lets her know I want her to stay in place and she lets me come up to her to halter her or attach the lead rope. It was just an awesome day! I am so proud of my pony!


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