Friday, November 21, 2014

Ah, There It Is

~~Thank you for ALL the wintery comments! So insight. Much knowledge~~

Again, as many of you are aware, it is cold. Very cold. Unseasonably wintery if you will. And Bacardi is experiencing the Winter Wackies. Closely related to the Fall Friskies. But worse, in my opinion because your hands are frozen and you simply just cannot.

majestic B is majestic. But also an asshole.
I am 100% sure someone forcibly inserted icicles up my horses butthole, because nothing else explains the absurd 180 turn.

His symptoms include; bolting at nothing, rearing at: snow blowing, leaves, sounds, movement of anything in general, refusing to walk places, tossing head opinionatedly, galloping madly in pasture, snorting, sliding stops into stall so fast at feeding time he falls down, spooking at anything in general, being uncooperative about everything, flinching when touched, and overall, forgetting how to horse.

There it is.

That moment in every young horses life when they are complete assshats for seemingly no reason at all.

I would like to point out that the OTTB variety are especially not logical during this time.

I've been raving for months about how strangely calm, cooperative and willing this wee babe of an ex-racehorse has been about almost everything I've presented him with. I thought I bought defective OTTB.

Thank god thats not true.

No but really, the other day I rode him was the most terrified I've ever been on the back of a horse and that is saying A LOT. I've been on some doozies.

I've been lunging and hacking when I have the chance, because you know daylight savings combined with work and no arena makes for a dull training schedule. He's been pretty great for most of it. When the wind kicked up on some days he was little skittery out in the cornfields, but who wouldnt be.

Last Sunday though, I was pretty confident I was going to end up dead if I didnt cut our ride short. Normally I like to work through things, but I  feared for my well-being.

We went for a hack per usual out in the cornfields and I tell you what, he BOLTED at eh. vah. ree. thing. gah. And I mean bolted. Like madly bucking, race speed bolt.

Mildly terrifying. Can still handle. Must go on.

fast B shenanigans
He then started eyeing everything in sight and spooking sideways. And by everything I mean literally nothing. Unless he was spooking at pebbles and dirt and leaves on the ground there is no rationale.

Sideways B shenanigans
ts k. Hes a baby. Chalk it up to that. Still alive. Can hang on. Keep going.

Then for, absolutely no fucking reason, he begins rearing. Repeatedly. Straight in the air.

Cue shitting pants.

Can not handle.

Abort.

Abort.

I dont know about y'all but I've never been on a rearing horse and its fucking terrifying. I thought my life was going to end. Right there. I dont know how he didnt flip over. But the vertical height we gained was impressive.

Vertical B shenanigans
I actually did that exact move to ensure I did not die. I also kicked my feet out but he merely dislodged me with the repetitive up and down lurching, sky high teetering and absolute fuckery. I really did not feel like falling from a 17.1 horse onto frozen ground, so I also instinctually pulled his nose around to his shoulder to prevent said vertical height. Thought that would work. Turns out my horse is a freak and can still rear with his face in his own body and that only made me more afraid of impending death by toppling and getting crushed.

Mind you, this was all about 5 seconds in time. Yes, a whole life can flash in that amount of time and you can think of every way to die in those brief moments.

I finally got him settled...somehow. And I was about NOPE with the whole situation.

Never again.

Rearing bad. Do not want.

So, I'm mildly worried that my perfect child has turned into a monster. But the other half of me attributed the out of character behavior to the severe drop in temperatures, being cooped up in  a barn, and the fact that it was a blustery day and the landscape changed a bit with snowfall and corn croppage.

OF COURSE I thought about tack. Saddle. Pad. Boots. Bit. my own riding. But seriously, NOTHING changed.

Either way I refuse to own a horse beast that exhibits that type of dangerous behavior, for ANY reason; tantrums, fear, unwillingness, disrespect- it aint right.

So we shall be working on that and seeing how the rest of our chilly winter rides go.

Hoping those icicles melt soon..

Want this guy back

11 comments:

  1. our horses did the same thing, pony did that, started to bolt then stopped and continued to half rear and be a turd till we got to the arena, them proceeded to have a horrible ride.

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  2. That is insanely terrifying. My horse did the SAME thing when I changed barns with him. I hand moved him multiple (not like ridiculous amounts but he has moved before all the same) times and for whatever reason this last time he lost his marbles. I straight up cried because I thought my OTTB had caught the crazies. I babystepped everything, and pretty much just grazed (the only thing he was mildly interested in at the time) for a month straight. Then BOOM one day he came back to earth. OTTBs can be weird.

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  3. I think it's definitely the weather. My horse was bucking (out of character) and being very reactive (thankfully not spooking or rearing yikes!) when the temp dropped suddenly. I did the same thing trying to rule out tack, pain, etc. Just hang in there. When I rode again the next two days it was in the fifties and he was great lol. Please be careful and good luck!!

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  4. For similar reasons I stopped riding in the winter completely. Steady just can't figure out his brain in cold weather. It sucks and it was a tough decision and each year I lament about it a bit but then I accept the break. Though he did not have all those dramatics he does randomly buck, rear or run sideways out of the blue for no particular reason. It was a day I was riding hinge alone and ended up face first in a pike of snow that I decided living was better than riding in crappy weather. And it's not like we made training headway in that time anyway. So for about 3 months I take a break. Stay safe babe!

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  5. You're not alone. Both Brantley and that little Quarter Horse Kid I used to ride are going through something. Brantley is very... Old School Brantley. Shaking, head up, eyes wide. I haven't even dared to get on. Kid is a bit pushy and almost violent. He charged his owner. EEK! So keep your head up, you're not alone! The weather is so up and down and crappy, I'm feelin' pretty crazy too. :)

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  6. Ah weather changing horses. Gotta love winter. Holly was spooking at another horse getting near her the other day. Like OMG he's gonna kill me, scoot across the arena crap. Winter sucks for that. I've ridden horses trained to rear, but its very diffrent mid-ride when you not sure wtf they are thinking, and how far they will go.

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  7. Winter Wackies hit my five-year-old in full force also. He's always been cinchy but is just being super unreasonable about tacking up lately -- trying to just walk off, run away, back away, etc. Also, he panicked in the cross ties, reared, leapt out of them, and broke his halter AND a cross-tie clip all because he heard the tractor start up at the other end of the barn. The tractor that travels the barn aisle four times a day, every day, to feed him and clean his stall. Not really sure what to do about it at the moment... currently combating it with a combination of firm "cut-that-shit-out" reminders and bribery, but it's not working that well. :(

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  8. Ahh rearing, the most bad of bad habits and the one I have most experience dealing with! If you need any tips for dealing with it, or just wanna cry over text drop me a line. As you know, Smokey is a pro at rearing (especially in the winter or when presented with any challenge he deems scary and NOPES right up) and I've learned some good tricks for dealing with the Winter OTTB Vertical Challenge :p

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  9. yikes - glad you made it out unscathed!! for your sake i hope it's attributable to baby ottb brains trying to fathom general weather fuckery...

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  10. Eep. Scary-ness. Glad you guys are okay and hope it works itself out soon

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  11. Baby brain....it's the weather, the seasons...etc. Hang in there!

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