Saturday, July 21, 2012

A Horse and her boy- the chronicals of Simon and Sassy

Sassy and her boy
Sassy was given to us by a very sweet young girl who had more horses than she could handle. She wanted to find her a good home, and was willing to give her away to the right person.  Her Aunt was an acquaintance of mine, and she gave me the girls number.  I went out to look at her, she was in a pasture with several other horses and goats.  Sassy was obviously the low horse on the totem pole.  there was a big paint mare who pushed her around terribly.  She was also almost impossible to catch. Once i got her caught in the big old pasture, she was gently and easy.  She has a big scar on her shoulder from an injury she suffered as a 2 day old filly, but it does not give her any problems.

So I agreed to take her, promised to love her and give her a good home.  Danny was all alone at that time and I knew he would be more than happy to have a friend.  My friend and trainer, Jay, went with me to pick her up.  The gal who was giving her to me was out of town but her cousin was there,  he offered to have his dogs chase her down so we could catch her.  I declined that offer, making a mental note to watch her around my dogs, and with a little bit of work we got her caught.  She loaded up easily and we hauled her home.  She is an AQHA filly going back to Peppy San Badger, and Colonel Freckles.  She is a sweet, very well balanced, very nice little filly.  A little smaller than I like, but that is why I gave her to Simon.  Although let me say she is certainly not to small for an adult to ride.   She became Simon's Christmas present.

She continues to this day to be a little hard to catch, although I will say, she is a million times better than she ever was. she also, and rightly so, did not like dogs at all, but she has now spent enough time mowing the lawn in my dog yard to get over that.  (my dogs could care less about horses)  I spent the rest of that winter and spring doing ground work with her.  Then I sent her to my trainer for a few weeks, and he put her first 20 rides on her. She was slated to go with him to a Buck  Branaman clinic that memorial day, but the month before the clinic was the big Equine Herpes outbreak, and the clinic was canceled.  I was so bummed!   We just kept working with her at home though. 
She is actually a very smooth ride

We got about 15 or 20 more rides on her, always in the round pen though, maybe 1 or 2 in the pasture, but then it turned cold and forward progress pretty much stopped.

Shortly after the new year I was introduced to a nice man down the road who has an indoor arena, and we started taking her down there once in a while. She was coming along nicely, even put on a few cows in there.  She had her ears pinned and kept trying to bite them cows on the butts!  She and Simon had a great time chasing those cows around the arena! 

Last April, we took her down and rode her and she did pretty well.  Although I will admit that I was starting to see where Simon's lack of experience was starting to confuse her, as to what was expected of her.  I knew I was going to need to ride her more myself, and then give him better lessons.  The very next day I wanted to catch Trax (another hard to catch one- not anymore though) and the whole little herd were running all over the pasture to avoid me.  I noticed the day after that, that she was limping on her left front.  ARGH!!!

I tried just confining her for a month, but no improvement, went to one vet for x-rays, she never found anything, had another vet come and x-ray and he found the chipped coffin bone. I had planned on posting a picture of her x-ray but I just learned that my disc drive is no longer working....again- ARGH!

Once we had a good diagnosis, the next step was to find a farrier.  You would think that would be easy in "the Cowboy State"  think again!  There are plenty out there, but finding one to show up, is an issue.  I took another full month before I finally found one.  His name is Mark Kiel, and he was right on time and did a wonderful job.  (Which is why I am ok mentioning his name)  He was on time, he got right down to business, he has a great calming effect on the horse, and did a very nice job on her. Oh and the price was fair too!

We are Stuck like this for the next six months, no riding at all.  Of course in this state, 6 months might as well be a year, there just isn't much riding going on in the dead of winter!  Recently I took her out along  side Killian, he is my slowest horse so I figured it would be safe.  She really has not been out along any roads before so I was curious to see how she would react.  She was like a kid exploring one of the seven wonders!  Everything was interesting to her, I took her over to a local trucking company and walked her around all the big trucks and the equipment, and she had to sniff and check everything out.  Not scared just curious.  When we headed home she started dragging her feet.  When we got to the yard she stopped.  She did not want to go home, she actually fought me coming up the drive.   She is reversed barn sour!

This is my favorite pic of the two of them together
I look forward to doing some two rein driving with her, and trying to get some video of that to post. I also want to get some pictures to show how soft and easy she is.  I can flex her laterally and she is as light as a feather.  I love working with her.  As you can see by her pictures, she is pretty great for a young mare with out a whole lot of riding on her.  Everything we have done with her has been with kids in mind.  Not much freaks her out anymore.  She has so much potential, to be anything we want her to be.  Its just a long journey to get there.  But I figure, by time Simon is experienced enough to be called a "good rider"  She will be all ready for him and they will have learned it all together.

No comments:

Post a Comment