1. Yankee and V did quite well this weekend at their Novice debut. I was worried about this being their move up show, considering it was a Team event and those can sometimes be a little bit more difficult, but they handled it well!
|Thats his XC face|
|He has also been taking his nap game seriously|
XC gave her some new questions, like a ditch, bank and corner (literally WTF, at novice? Since when?) and they tackled it brilliantly. I can't wait to see the pro pics!
Overall they ended 11th out of a large division of 25 at their first novice together and I couldn't be more proud and excited for the next year!
2. B is 100% sound. FINALLY. He was cleared for under saddle work and we've been going for long walks around the farm and working on fun things like lateral work, walking over poles and halts. Riveting stuff people. I had been holding back on trotting because he still felt a little off to me, but yesterday he felt 100% so I will slowly add in more work and eventually some jumping. Dare I say this, but I am feeling super lucky this wasn't a worse injury and it healed relatively quickly.
|Hai, you have snax yes?|
3. Hackabit. I've been playing with B's set up for a while. I refused to admit for a while that he simply hates bits, but I've come to that conclusion along with others-- trusted folks like trainers, so please, keep your opinions to yourself. I hate that I even have to say that, but we all know people on the internet can be judgmental assholes. Something I'm working on too. ANYWAYS. I switched him to a hackamore a while back after playing around with several different bits with no luck, settling on the hackamore. He went quite well in it and happily went around courses under 3ft quite well. I've never actually had a horse respond so well to a hackamore--the difference is night and day. He just hates bits of all kinds and never really relaxes with one in his mouth.
I've debated trying the combo hack bits, but I tried one on Yankee once and it was WAY too much for him and he's a lot less sensitive than B. That, and the fact that they're usually $100+, I didn't want to drop that only to have B reject it 1000%.
|Tired from an hour hack in "warmer" temps. Time for that coat to go!|
Enter, my franken-hackabit creation. It looks ghastly, but honestly, I think its perfect. B really seemed to love it as well. This creation is simply a bridoon hanger added under the hackamore, with two reins. The bridoon is a super small straight bar snaffle--one I NEVER thought in a million years he would like. One rein attached to the small snaffle, and the other attached to the hackamore. Also, I added a standing martingale, because hot TB with 3 weeks indoors and hardy any turnout. This obviously had to be attached to a noseband since you can't out a standing on a hackamore, but it will eventually come off again once he settles back into a routine of work and isn't a giant ball of energy.
I played with this set up a few times just to make sure his first test ride wasn't a fluke, and I have to say, this might be our solution. For one, his walk is his worst gait--pretty resistant to relaxation and giving with his jaw and poll. I know its resistance, and despite how soft my hands are or how mild the bit, he still is inconsistent with acceptance. With the hackabit, he was 100% relaxed. Seriously. Even when he would shy at something or get lit about horses running around all it took was a half halt, and instead of flinging his head around and flailing, he simply came back to me and lifted his back and stepped under himself. Say what?! For two, I adore two reins. They act separately and each have their own purpose and I really feel a difference with each one. I luff it.
|A happy B|
I am curious to see how this transfers to jumping, but I can say that at the WTC, he has continued to show no objections. I am truly stunned because I stayed away from thinner bits, thinking he would hate them. In the wrong hands, thin bits can really be awful and are considered a little more severe than normal, fatter snaffles. But maybe, this whole time B has been trying to tell me that he has a small mouth and fat bits are not his jam? Interested to see if this transfers to dressage and their legal bits and whatnot--I will be trying this. Sidenote does anyone have a thin loose ring for sale, haha.
I'm excited that this week we finally have normal fall temps and riding outside will be glorious and not sweaty. What are you all up to this week?