Need a new name - Page 2

Shine

I'm pretty sure those instructions for estimating height are only accurate for foals.... Not a horse that is 2 yrs.

Love the 'splashy' markings on Aires, and glad the hoof ordeal is improving so quickly. For you at least. lol--I would expect him to try to show off for the farrier when he comes back They always know somehow when poor behaviour is least appreciated!
 

bassbonediva

From what I've read and seen on horses around the stable, it should be pretty accurate. Most of the horses at the stable follow the "rule" stated in that first method, that the leg from fetlock to elbow equals the measurement from elbow to withers when grown. It worked on my friend's 16-year-old arab mare.

Aires got gelded today! He's feeling very sorry for himself. I gave him his antibiotics (1200mg of sulfa) in some sweet feed this afternoon. This is the first time he's ever had sweet feed and he nearly tried to eat the bucket out of my hand. I have to walk him 30-45 minutes twice tomorrow, then 30-45 minutes once a day for 7-10 days after that, plus he needs to be turned out for 1.5-2 hours every day and made to run. That last part is going to be interesting because he is the laziest horse in turnout I have ever seen. He rolls and then he ambles around grazing. On Friday, Cam is going to start working at getting a saddle on him. The vet said that with Aires personality, he wouldn't be surprised if Cam has a saddle on him and at least riding in the round pen within two hours. The only hitch they had was haltering him. He seriously doesn't like men for whatever reason. The vet, his assistant (who was a girl), Cam, Dave (the turnout guy), Mark (a friend of Dave's that works around the stable), and Jen (the trainer at the stable) tried for almost 20 minutes to get him haltered, but no one could catch him (in his little 16' x 24' stall). Unfortunately, I had to work, so they called my friend, Christina (the one with the arab mare) and had her go and catch him. She walked right up, haltered him, and handed the lead rope to the vet's assistant with no problems. He was an absolute angel after that. The vet called him a "cheap drunk" because it didn't take much to dope him up for the procedure. He said that he's had to give some thoroughbreds FIVE TIMES the dose he gave Aires. They also completely gelded him and didn't leave him proud cut. I'm extremely glad 'cuz I'm not sure I could have handled a 17hh proud cut gelding. lol
 

Akari_32

He's a good looking boy! I've been creepin' around this threat waiting for pics lol

He's a big one. He'll be huge, that's for sure! I love how thick his legs are <3 He's a draft mix, right?
 

bassbonediva

Yup. He's a spotted draft/percheron cross. Here's a pic of his sire (he's the sixth stallion down on their stallion page...name is Pete):
 

Akari_32

Aww he looks just like his dad! <3
 

bassbonediva

Hehe. I need to get a pic of his half brother, Petey. Petey is at the same stable we're at (they were rescued at the same time) and he is built like a TANK, just like their dad. Aires got the more Percheron build. If you google "two-year-old percheron," he looks just like a lot of the horses in the pics.

Here's a pic of a two-year-old Percheron stallion. Aires is built a bit more "downhill" than this guy, but their overall build is the same (downhill meaning his butt his higher than his withers):
 

Akari_32

I like the huuuuuge, tubby draft horses, just like I like huge dogs LOL My favorites have to be the really huge, black, clidesdale-looking ones. No idea if that's what they are, but I think I could look at those all day *.*

That's a good looking horse! The dude running next to it looks a bit rediculous, but the horse is a looker I never thought I would say "Ooh! Shiny!" about a horse before ;D
 

bassbonediva

You're probably thinking of a shire:

The colt in that other picture has been body clipped and rubbed with baby oil to look that shiny (body clipping means they basically shave their hair down to stubble). That colt sold for $105,000.
 

LyndaB

Can you tell at all when you lunge him what his riding gait will be like, comfort-wise? Not sure if I'm asking the question correctly....
 

bassbonediva

Yep, I get exactly what you're asking, Lynda. And yes, you can! His back hardly moves at all at a walk, trot or canter. The less movement (vertically or even laterally) that a horse's back has when it moves, the more comfortable their gait will be when ridden. A horse with a lot of vertical movement (up and down) when they trot or short strides when they trot is going to be a choppy ride. A horse with a lot of lateral (side to side) movement when they trot is going to be a rather bumpy ride. A horse like Aires, with nice long low strides, is going to feel like they're floating rather than trotting. The only sensation of speed you'll get is that the ground is moving faster.
 

LyndaB

I used to exercise a horse where I boarded my own years ago that had the sweetest lope on the plant. It literally was like sitting in a rocking chair.
 

bassbonediva

There are all black shires, I just happened to pick a pic of one that had white. Or you could mean a friesian, but they don't have nearly the feathering on their legs that shires or clydes do. You'll have to google "friesian" 'cuz apparently Google hates me right now.

Aires went for a walk on the trail today. He has to be walked 30-45 minutes every day (had to be done twice today). So, we walked to the head of a nearby trail while my friend rode her 16-year-old arab mare. He did absolutely AMAZING! Didn't spook once and I was even able to walk next to him with the lead rope over his shoulder and me not touching the lead rope at all and he followed me just like I had my hand on the lead rope. I even did a bit of a serpentine pattern on the road and he just followed right along.

They're going to start breaking him on Friday! Cam thinks he can have a saddle on him and him in the saddle within two hours.
 

Shine

As far as I'm concerned putting a saddle on a horse is never a problem... unless they were wild last week. Its the standing still and remaining calm as a person gets on that takes longer! ;D

He should be good though. The draft genes are calming Even if you say he isn't overly fond of men...
 

bassbonediva

My biggest concern is that Cam is totally going to cowboy up on him and just toss a saddle on him. Aires will not tolerate that and will act out accordingly, which won't go over well with Cam at all. Also, I taught Aires how to free lunge using nothing but hand signals and body movements, as you can see by the pictures. When I told Cam that teaching Aires to lunge was done, so he didn't have to worry about it, he said "If he doesn't know how to lunge, he will by the time I'm done with him." That really bothered me for some reason. I had literally just told him that Aires knows how to lunge, so why would he say something like that in reply? IDK, some of the things he's said have just bothered me.

Anyway, more proof that Aires doesn't like men today. We got Dave, the turnout guy, to come over and say hI to Aires while I had him in hand. We had just gotten done with an hour-long trail walk, but Aires went on high alert when Dave approached him. I even spoke to him calmingly and Dave was very slow and gentle with him, but he still kept trying to move away from Dave.

I have started teaching Aires to lead to the mounting block and stand there. I'll lead him up, tell him to stand (yes, I taught him that command plus "step" for him to take one step), then climb up on the block and lean over/on his back or slap his back. So far, the only time he moved was today when my friend had her mare (who is apparently coming into season) right in front of the mounting block (she was facing the block with the rail between her and the block). Aires looked around to see who was next to him and Cassie went nuts, lifting her rear and squealing at him. Scared poor Aires half to death. lol
 

GemstonePony

were it me, I'd try to find another trainer.. but that's just me. My sister sent her horse to a trainer that a) hated the horse, and b) the horse didn't like, and it didn't turn out great.. I mean, she did what she was trained to do, but she wasn't the same horse when she came back- she was a lot more stand-offish. she was then sent off to a trainer that at least didn't dislike her, and acted more like her sweet self when she came back. Not that I know a enough about Cam to really judge, but still...
 

bassbonediva

I don't really have a choice in trainers. Aires came with 30 days training when I bought him, and it was stipulated in the contract that Cam (who is the barn owner) would be doing the training, with the help of the resident trainer. Aires doesn't exactly dislike Cam (not like he dislikes/distrusts Dave), but he doesn't really like him either. I also don't know how involved in the training I'm going to be, given that I'm at the barn every day after work. I would prefer it if Cam gets the saddle on him initially, then Jen and I work on the cues and all that.

Alright! So, Aires was started under saddle on Friday! I have a pic on my phone (need to send it to my Photobucket account, just haven't had a spare moment to breathe, much less do other stuff) that the trainer sent me. He looks good under saddle! The western saddle they put on him looks not so comfy for the person, though. No one got up on him, but Jen (the trainer) said that with as easy as it was to get a saddle on him, he's going to be one of the easiest horses she's ever had to help break. Made me happy.
 

GemstonePony

I'm glad to hear things are going well... pics, or it didn't happen!
oh, and breathe... not doing so results in brain-damage. ;D
 

bassbonediva

Here ya go! PROOF!!

Poor baby has been so sore and swollen for the past two days, though, that he's just been allowed to be lazy. Saturday I took him for a little walk around the arena (three laps) and then Sunday he just got turned out with the other boys.

Cam said he took the bit just fine and didn't even flinch when they saddled him, just looked around to see what they were doing. For now, they have him in a jointed snaffle with rollers, but Cam wants to put him in a hackamore eventually (which is actually fine by me...after I found out that you can, indeed, jump in a hackamore). He also learned that getting hosed down is an extremely pleasant experience (last time I tried to rinse him off, he wasn't too sure about it and kept trying to run over whoever was holding him to get away).
 

LyndaB

There's that handsome man..... sure does look good with that saddle!

What method does the trainer use to break the horses? The guy sure sounds like he uses roughness to get his point across.
 

bassbonediva

I watched Cam work with Aires today, actually. He was not rough at all. He uses a jointed snaffle with rollers for new horses and Aires was completely fine with it. He played with it for all of a minute or two and then just acted like it wasn't there. Basically, all Cam did was lunge him a little, to get some of his "energy" (ha!) out, then he bridled him and put the breaking saddle on him. He wasn't extremely gentle putting the saddle on, but he wasn't overly rough, either. He saddled him basically like he'd be saddled once he's broke. I have pics and a video of it, but Photobucket is being weird. I'll put them up as soon as I can get them to load.
 

GemstonePony

awww... good horse! he looks totally calm about the whole thing, too. Best of luck with the training!
 

bassbonediva

He is totally calm! The worst he does is that he's a little flinchy when Cam puts the saddle on, but that's it. No bucking (this is the second time they've had a saddle on him and the first time he did one tiny buck and then was like "Oh. Okay. Whatever." ), no spooking, nada. He's just a good, solid horse. The second horse Cam worked with today (another two-year-old gelding, but this one a QH) did these little almost crow hops with every stride after Cam put the saddle on him. He did that for the first few times around the bull pen. The third horse (Cam's son's 5yo QH gelding) was afraid of everything and VERY spooky. Out of the three, Aires was BY FAR the best!

I have a quandary, though...Aires is still a little flinchy on his right side (which is better than before he was gelded...before he was gelded, he didn't like ANYTHING or ANYONE on his right side) and Cam wants me to work on it with him. The problem is, Aires isn't flinchy on that side with me. I can work all day on his right side, sudden movements and all, and he just doesn't care. Any suggestions?
 

GemstonePony

hire a friend? teach the dog some tricks(like "speak") and see if you can get him to do "sudden movements" and whatever else sets Aires off to condition him to being fine with something other than you? maybe use a squeaky toy? RC car? RC helicopter? just throwing ideas around.
 

LyndaB

I have a quandary, though...Aires is still a little flinchy on his right side (which is better than before he was gelded...before he was gelded, he didn't like ANYTHING or ANYONE on his right side) and Cam wants me to work on it with him. The problem is, Aires isn't flinchy on that side with me. I can work all day on his right side, sudden movements and all, and he just doesn't care. Any suggestions?

I was pretty much thinking to do the same thing as gemstone, as far as having someone else do things on the right side, while you are on the left.

I can't tell if you're just being humble or if you truly understand that Aires is so good about things and advancing so quickly because of the time, effort and attitude that you're putting into him. He obviously respects the heck out of you and is learning expected behavior and SOP.
 

bassbonediva

I need to have someone he doesn't know do stuff on his right side, I guess. He is totally fine with my friend, Christina, because she's helped me do a bit of his ground work (I didn't want him to be one of those horses that only one person can handle or that will only listen to one person). It's (still) mainly men he's flinchy with, really. For example, Christina and I can grab his left ear now and play with it and he's like "Whatever" (before he was gelded, that was a sure-fire way to get yourself bit...or at least he'd threaten to bite). When Cam was gently messing with his left ear last night, he kept pulling away and making his angry face (he's VERY expressive).

Lynda, it's a little bit of both, I think. I know that I put quite a bit of time into getting him to where he has almost impeccable ground manners (he follows you around like a puppy dog, even without the lead rope...he was doing it to Cam last night, even!), but that was mainly because I realized just how big he was going to be and knew that I didn't want a 17hh 2000lbs monster with horrible ground manners. That's a good way to get yourself hurt or killed. I also didn't want him to be like Christina's arab mare, who is scared of her own shadow out on the trail. So, I've exposed him to things that he'll see on the trail (mailboxes, he was already fine with cars and motorcycles/quads/dirt bikes because his stall is next to the road).

I think another part of the reason I've taken so much time and effort to shape him into a great horse is that I have a dear friend who bought her gelding as a two-year-old (he is now 16) and she keeps trying to convince me that Aires is going to be as awful to handle has her gelding was (and still is...Christina and I are convinced he's proud cut). So, I am kind of out to prove her wrong, in a way.
 

LyndaB

Hey, who cares why you're doing it.... what matters is you're doing it.....
 

Shine

What? She thinks if you buy a horse as a two year old they will turn out 'bad'? lol--all horses were two once, and the vast majority turn out just fine so long as they are given the basics and handled consistently while learning. Its the ones with messed up early training that can be a problem, especially if they are highly sensitive types... Like my Kest, or 'Dakota-man'

Glad to hear the first few days went well, and Aires is such an obliging soul
 

bassbonediva

She has a quarter horse/arab cross. She spent a YEAR breaking him to saddle. An entire YEAR! She had him with a trainer that apparently abused him. He is high-strung, pushy, a pain under saddle, kicked the bejeezus out of my friend's arab mare (to this day my friend with the gelding SWEARS the mare started it by coming between Tam and his food...yeah, great excuse there). If I didn't know better, I'd say he was proud cut.

She thinks that MY two-year-old will act exactly like HER two-year-old did. Which is to say that he's an absolute pain in the behind! She said it was a serious rodeo the first time they put a saddle on Tam and she doesn't believe me that Aires only did one little baby buck when they first put the saddle on and then he was like "Okay, whatever." Extremely infuriating!

Anyway, we had some adventures today! I groomed Aires and trimmed his mane so that it's at least even now (not perfect, but WAY better than it was). We tried to trim his bridle path with the clippers, but he wasn't going for that and his mane is so thick that the clippers weren't doing a very good job (plus they were running out of battery). Anyway, I went and turned him out with the rest of the geldings and that's when the trouble started. There were a couple different geldings turned out that aren't usually out. There was Rex, the trainer's 9yo arab gelding; Mo, a 5yo arab ex-show horse who is really learning to be a horse again (he came from a show barn in Scottsdale); and Brock, a 23yo arab gelding. Well, Rex and Mo were being bullies and ganging up on the smaller/younger horses, which were Aires, Brock and Beau, another boarder's 2yo QH gelding. Anyway, I was getting ready to leave and went to bring Aires in. I caught him (he was "hiding" in the far corner of the turnout) and started leading him toward the gate, where all the other horses were gathered 'cuz the turnout guys were bringing everyone in. Well, as soon as Aires saw Rex and Mo at the gate, he froze. I didn't realize what the problem was, so I forced him forward. BIG mistake! He FREAKED when Rex and Mo looked at him and all of a sudden I was between a 1200lbs freaked out Aires and two 1000lbs bullies charging at him! Most horses I've dealt with will veer off if there's a person there, but Rex and Mo just kept coming. Aires skittered around me and tried to charge forward, away from Rex and Mo, but there was a fence there and he ended up nearly sitting on his haunches as he stopped and turned. I still had hold of his lead rope at that point, but I realized I wasn't going to be able to stop him, so I flipped the lead rope up and managed to get it across his withers as he took off. He galloped to the other end of the turnout and Rex and Mo were content to let him go. So, I went after him, just to unclip his lead rope. Next thing I know, Brock (who apparently things human=safety) was trotting around me as I walked toward Aires. He was SERIOUSLY freaked out, too. So, I reach Aires and unclipped his lead rope and started walking back toward the gate (was just going to wait until Rex and Mo had been taken out of the turnout to bring Aires in) and Aires started following me like I still had his lead rope on. As I start back toward the gate, Brock comes charging at me with Rex and Mo hot on his tail. Brock barely veered off in time to avoid hitting me and I actually had to step out of the way of the other two hooligans. This happened at least three more times before I got back to the gate (Aires stayed back in the corner where it was "safe"). Finally, Dave caught Brock and took him out, and Jen (the trainer) caught Rex (her gelding) and took him out, but Mo was being a pain. Finally, I had to catch him for Mark (the other turnout guy) before I could even remotely get Aires to come near the gate.

I did get to see him hauling BUTT in the turnout, though! I had no idea he was that fast! lol
 

Shine

From what you are describing I would have gone off for a lunge whip to threaten them with so I could get my own horse out. Or even used the lead rope the same way once you had it off Aires. That kind of behaviour is seriously dangerous for a human. And 'respect human on ground' should be all but drilled into their heads already at their age.

I've only had a few horses pull that 'herd boss' near me, but I can sound really mean (lol) so usually yelling and waving arms has been more then enough to deter them. It helps that the horse I am trying to lead usually trusts that I will 'save' them; like Shady. Kestrel would be an exception to that, because guaranteed he'd be more spooked by me yelling then the other horses... good thing he's a dominant gelding himself, so it hasn't come up.

Your friend is nuts if she thinks Aires will turn out like Tam. Even if the two went though the exact same training Aires would come out of it well ahead. Arabs as a group don't do well with 'overly forceful' or abusive training... and tend to remember their adversion for years. Witness the difference between my two: Shady (QH) and Kestrel (arab). Kestrel had messed up/abusive training, and it shows. Shady... you could hit her, yell at her, kick etc from on her back, and she'll barely bat an eye. Kestrel... try any of that and you'd stand a good chance of no longer being on his back. But another Arab we had (and trained ourselves) was perfectly calm with all of that, as I should know.... having spent plenty of time bellowing at our dogs to 'get off the highway' from atop his back. Guaranteed Kestrel would have a mental meltdown at that.
 

bassbonediva

I did use the lead rope! That's why I was so freaked out by it. Most horses I've dealt with will respect the spinning lead rope, but these guys just kept coming. And oddly, there are no real lunge whips at the stable. There is one whip, but it's just the handle (long non-whippy part) with about 3" of cord left on the end. Not good for much of anything, really.

As for my friend...I just smile and nod politely, now. For example, my friend was completely freaked that I'm teaching Aires to stand tied at a hitching rail because Tam won't tie at all. If he feels any pressure on the lead rope, he sits back and completely freaks out. He has broken four halters doing this. Aires has only really "pulled back" once when he was tied and he was tied so loosely that he just pulled the knot free...and, the only reason he pulled back was 'cuz my friend's mare spooked at a whirlwind that started right on top of her and freaked out, so he kinda halfway spooked, but not really.
 

bassbonediva

Update time!

Aires got worked again today. He gave us a little rodeo after Cam first put on the saddle, but that was only because Cam tightened the girth more than he usually does. His "rodeo" consisted of all of three little tiny bucks (that I could have ridden out). Lol He did really well again, although Cam's bridle doesn't fit him anymore (really weird, since on Tuesday it fit just fine). Luckily my friend gave me a bridle that fits his big head perfectly with room to grow. He's also responding REALLY well to pressure on the reins. He's very smart and picks things up with just one or two times being shown. Anyway, Cam even wiggled the saddle around and did what you'd normally do once you saddle a horse and Aires just stood there like "What?" After Cam go done, he took Aires out and unsaddled him at the hitching posts. He was a perfect gentleman and didn't even flinch when Cam dropped the training saddle on the ground in front of the hitching rail. After Cam hosed him down, he handed me the lead rope and as we were walking away, I heard him say to Christina (my friend): "That is one heck of a good horse!" Christina said after I was out of ear shot, Cam said that Aires is going to be one of those "once in a lifetime, horse of all horses." Then, after we were done and about to leave, Cam was teasing me and said: "I should have charged you more for that boy. He's something else!"

Anyway, on to the good stuff! Pic time! Sorry about the sun in some of them. We were working right about sundown and it gets really dusty in the arena (yay for Arizona ).
 

bassbonediva

And I got in contact with Aires' breeder. I wanted to know who his sire and dam were because there was this lady that boards at the same stable we do who SWORE Aires is an appy/Percheron cross. She owns Petey (who I thought was Aires' half brother, but he's not) and apparently coordinated the purchase/rescue of Aires, Petey, Piper and Liberty (Piper is a paint/Percheron filly and Aires' half sister, and Liberty is a full Percheron mare...they're all the same age). Anyway, the breeder was able to find Aires in their foal records and sent me his sire and dam's registered names and registration numbers (turns out his sire has Two Eyed Jack in his lineage on his dam's side!)...plus a couple pics of Aires as a baby and Aires' sire!

So, here ya go! My baby as a little tyke. I'm glad he's showing more of his momma's build and head. I don't like his daddy at all, TBH. His dam's name is Edelweiss Ida (I'm assuming they call her Ida, though).
 

LyndaB

Awwwwwwwww, wookit the widdle one...... how adorable is that!!!

"once in a lifetime, horse of all horses"..... can't beat that with a stick, eh?
 

bassbonediva

I know, right?! He is so freakin' adorable!! Honestly, I'm VERY glad he's taking more after his momma. He's got her build and her head, just his dad's paint coloring (only better). His dad is kind of fugly, TBH.

As for how Cam described Aires...this is coming from a man who has broke and trained dozens of horses, possibly even hundreds. He's already talking about getting up on Aires within the next session or two...none of the other horses he's breaking right now (the two geldings he worked with on Tuesday and another boarder's mare) are anywhere near that stage yet. At first, Cam was skeptical that I wanted to do hunter/jumper with Aires (eventually), but now he's basically acknowledging that Aires could and would excel at just about any discipline I put him in.
 

LyndaB

His dad is kind of fugly, TBH.
Um..... you said it, I didn't.....

He just sounds like a truly special creature.... like this dog I used to have. There was just something about her. And an author dedicated a book to her that said "to Ripley, a truly magical being"..... true dat!
 

Shine

Not liking the look of the sire. The pic is plain horrible, which doesn't help; but he's got a reeeally long back on him, which I never like to see. The pics of Aires and his dam are great though. What a little cutie!

Its always wonderful when the trainer thinks your horse is as special as you do! Everything seems to go soo much easier when that is the case. Plus its great to hear
 

bassbonediva

Not only is his back super long, Shine, his neck is really short and thick. I don't know. I just really don't like him. Soooooooo glad Aires takes after his dam!

I led Aires from the left today (my left, his right) and he was fine. My friend tried it yesterday and it took her 10 minutes to walk about 100 feet. Apparently he trusts me implicitly.
 

Shine

Honestly, other then colour that stud looks like he has nothing to recommend him. And as you mentioned Aires markings are far more eye catching. One more stud that should've been gelded in my opinion.... guess Aires makes him worth it though

He sounds like a quick learner. And once he discovers that no harm comes of the opposite side (especially when the person is his favourite one ) he quickly calms down. Which is great, good mind on that boy

The first times I tried to lead Kestrel on the 'off' side he spooked out. He still doesn't like it very much and will try to switch back on me, ducking behind me. Sadly I haven't put in the time to fix that. Jogging with him on that side would prove 'entertaining' I'm sure. lol--but then the first time I tried jogging beside him (on the 'proper' side even) it was clear no one had ever jogged with him before. He spooked and bolted. And he was FIVE. Seriously, what did I get myself into buying a half-wild five year old that had been beaten in early training?? *sigh* Sucker for punishment, that's me
 

bassbonediva

He does learn quickly. In fact, today he kept trying to lead on the off side. Silly boy! He was being all sorts of flighty and "OMG! I'm gonna die!" today! We gave my friend's mare a bath today (and in the process discovered that the senior feed my friend was giving her was causing her hooves to go soft...Cam had this happen with one of his dude string horses who was on the same senior feed and it lamed him for quite a while), so we figured we'd try giving Aires at least a rinse down since he had rolled TWICE while in turnout and was absolutely filthy (I no longer had a black and white horse, but a mouse brown horse with darker patches where his black used to be). Cam usually rinses Aires down after he works him and he stands fine, so we figured it wouldn't be that big of a deal. WRONG! He was horrible! He kept trying to run over my friend and would not stand still. He doesn't lunge on a line (working on it, but he somehow thinks that if there's a rope attached to him, he should be in the "heel" position ), so making him lunge in circles to drain some energy wasn't going to happen. Anyway, we finally got him to stand at least somewhat still so that I could soap down his hind legs where he dripped after his gelding. Poor thing is bitten raw in some places by flies! Odd thing, though...he left me spray his face (gently, of course) and was totally okay with it! Weirdo! So then we took him over to stand at the hitching rail to dry off and then fly spray him and he was fine on the right side (his normally flinchy side) for fly spraying, but as soon as I moved to his left, it was a complete rodeo. He didn't win, however. He got tied to the hitching rail (I usually just have to loop the rope once and that's enough) and made to stand there for a good 10 minutes. He gave me the biggest pouty face ever! Anyway, after dinner Cam had me bring out Aires so he could work him. He was flighty from the get-go! Took the bit just fine (switched bridles and bits 'cuz the bridle Cam was using was suddenly too small...my bridle has just a regular single joint snaffle, while Cam's has a single joint snaffle with rollers), but then once Cam tried to put the training saddle on him, he tensed up. Cam barely got the girth tightened and Aires spooked and nothing and took off around the bull pen. He was even cantering on his own, which never happens! He refused to turn in to Cam when he'd switch directions and then when Cam would stop him (he stopped well on command), he wouldn't walk in, but would stand out against the wall of the bull pen just staring at Cam. Then, Cam was walking him to the center of the bull pen and he spooked at ABSOLUTELY NOTHING and nearly ran Cam over! It was insane! Even Cam was like "Who switched horses on us?!" Hopefully he'll be better tomorrow.
 

GemstonePony

Oh, lovely, an "off-day". I remember the first time a horse I was training had one of those. The day before, she was almost perfectly broke, the day of she was all like "who are you? I have never seen that equipment before in my life!". I ended it on a good note anyways, but was nearly in tears and wondering what I'd done wrong. My more experienced older sister informed me it wasn't my fault, horses sometimes have off-days sometimes. She was right: the next day, the horse was an angel again.
 

bassbonediva

Thankfully that's the first really off-day he's had, and honestly, it wasn't *that* bad. It was more just frustrating. Another frustration was that he's been fine with his ears being messed with since his gelding, but yesterday he was back to his "Don't touch me or I keel you!" attitude about them, even with me!

I'm going to pick up a fly mask for Aires today because the flies are really bothering his face. My friend thinks it'll be a rodeo trying to get it on him, but I honestly think he won't be that bad. I wish there was a way to keep them off his nose because that's where they are the worst, but even the ones that come down to the end of the nose wouldn't cover enough (plus he has a fairly long head).
 

Shine

Your friend really thinks everything will be a rodeo doesn't she?

I don't imagine the mask will be any more of a problem then putting a halter on. And even horses that don't like their ears being messed with usually have no issues about that. Some horses will act a bit 'tenitive' when you try to walk them the first time after putting it on--due to the restriction in vision I'd imagine. I had a mare that wore a mask for years (eye issue) and after a while she acted like she was missing her 'clothes' if you forgot and put her out without it on--right down to a big *sigh* of relief when you'd notice and go put it on.

All horses have off days. He could just be recovering his energy from being gelded as well. You mentioned that he was sore or 'swollen' after one of the training sessions... well, horses are often more traceable to things they usually react to when there is another pain distracting them. Another option is if something (or someone) scared him the night/day before. LOL about the bath! We had one mare that liked to be sponged off... but heaven forbid any water drip down her legs or off her stomach! ;D
 

bassbonediva

Tried the fly mask today. Talk about a fiasco! The moment he saw it in my hand as I walked up to his stall, he was like "What the HECK is that thing?!" and avoided me completely. So, I caught him and led him up to the hitching rail so I could tie him (was working alone today). He was fine with it on his left side and let me pet him with it and everything. I moved to his right (his more "spooky" side) and he acted like I was either going to beat him senseless or kill him. I finally went and lunged him to see if that would help him work off some nervous energy and it didn't. So finally, I had the trainer, who had been giving a double lesson (more of a day camp type thing) while I was battling with Aires, help me out. She suggested moving from the top of his head down instead of from his nose up. Worked like a charm. She actually got it on him and he was totally okay...until she went to undo the velcro (which is still new and stiff and loud). Then it was "OMG! I'm gonna die!" But once she ripped the velcro a couple of times, he was like "Oh, maybe not." Jen wants me to work on the fly mask every day, just a little bit at a time, but especially ripping the velcro so he gets used to the sound.

Also, Christina (my friend) is looking at purchasing Aires' half sister, Piper, from Cam. She is adorable and not quite as big as Aires (she's maybe 14.3-15hh), but has an AMAZING disposition. Her only concern is that somehow during transport from Canada to here when Cam brought the four foals down, Piper's front left leg twisted. It doesn't affect her movement at all, really, and she runs and plays with the other mares like there's nothing wrong. In fact, if she was standing in a field with a bunch of other horses, unless you REALLY looked, you wouldn't be able to tell anything was wrong with her. Our vet has said that Piper can be ridden on trails (once she's broke) and will make an awesome trail horse, but Christina (and her husband) have some reservations about it. She wants the farrier to look at Piper when he comes out to trim Aires' feet and see if she'd need any corrective trimming or anything. Honestly, if Cam offered me Piper and I could afford her, I'd keep both her and Aires. I'd make Piper into a trail horse for my son, though. She just has the sweetest "love me" disposition.
 

Shine

lol--horses are so bizarre! If he's that twitchy about his head you should work on pulling things over his head, as well as teaching him to lower it when you ask... that could prove rather important with a horse likely to get as tall as he will.

I know I take all blankets off (winter, summer and fly sheets) by pulling them over their heads. Put them on that way too. I wouldn't try that with your boy until he relaxes about the mask, but the step before their blankets coming off that way was usually putting a sweater on their neck (near the withers), then pulling it slowly up their neck and then over their head.

So she doesn't think Piper will be a bronc? *snicker* Sad how our eyes always exceed what we can afford. When I bought Kest there were 2 others I wanted too... either one of which would have been way easier to work with. Oh well, I love the crazy mutant anyway
 

bassbonediva

He isn't twitchy about his head, per say, it's more things on his right side. I can pet him all day long on his left side with the fly mask in my hand, even playing with his ears and putting it over his eye...but as soon as I make a move toward that right side, all heck breaks loose.

I don't think I'll be blanketing Aires for a while. It doesn't get cold enough here to (unless you have an uber sensitive horse like an arab) and he's spent two winters here without being blanketed already. But, it's always a good thing to get them used to.

That's a good idea about teaching him to lower his head. Again, I'm used to Dakota, who would hang his head to my boots if I wanted to do anything to his head. He loved having his head messed with and would even reach for the bit (even though he hated working).

As for Piper...Christina gave her a bath on Saturday and she said that she was absolutely AMAZING and made Aires look like a complete hooligan (which he is ). Of course, she's used to her arab who HATES being bathed, won't stand on the wash rack and actually rears if you try to scrub her down (but only when Christina does it...I have washed Cassie MANY times when we were at our friend's barn and never had a problem).
 

LyndaB

Maybe give him head massages so that he'll love having his head approached.
 

bassbonediva

Okay, so I am faced with a dilemma.

Aires might be switching stalls at the stable because one of the other boarders is getting another horse and they want their two horses to be stalled next to each other so that they can get used to each other. Fine, I'm that picky.

However, my friend and I were walking around the property this afternoon and realized that there is a huge end stall that is 85% shaded down by the arena that is open. I like it because it is away from the road (Aires' current stall is right next to the road), he'd get used to the activity in the arena (a must of we're going to be doing any kind of showing), and hopefully it'll get him used to stuff going on all around him so he won't be so "OMG! I'm gonna die!" about his right side (right now he stands with his left side to the road and nothing really on his right, so he's extremely flinchy and scared about his right).

Anyway, the downside of this prime piece of real estate is that it happens to be the wettest stall on the property. All the other stalls are slightly uphill from this stall and so everything drains down into it. This would be a significant problem if we lived in somewhere like, say, Washington state, where it rains all the time, but we live in Northern Arizona, where we have monsoons for about a month and a half and where it rains a bit in winter, but nothing spectacular (we had snow twice, maybe three times, this past winter and that was considered a wet winter...but we never get more than a few inches).

So, what would you do? Keep him in the smaller stall (about 30ft by 20ft) that is drier (the stall he'd be moving to is the same size as the one he's in now)? Or move him to the bigger stall (probably 50ft by 30ft) that has more shade, but is wetter?

Oh, and Aires was being such a puppy today! We were filling his water trough and were standing there talking and all of a sudden Aires is standing next to me, begging to have his face scratched. I scratched and scratched, but that wasn't enough. Next he wanted his withers scratched. THEN, he wanted his rump scratched. So, I obliged and then gave him a "shiatsu massage" all along his back and rump (getting him used to it). He LOVED it. lol He can be so silly sometimes!
 

Shine

lol--Those are some huge 'stalls' they have there! My notion of stall-size is the show barn scale... ie 8x10 to 12x12

You're moving anyway though aren't you? Whichever you decide on its not like its going to be a permanent issue. There seems to be pluses to both. If you were staying full time I'd probably go with the bigger one, and bring in some gravel to create a 'high ground' spot that'd stay relatively dry.
 

BUMBLEBEEGOBYADDICT

sorry for being lazy but did this thread start out as a rewuest for a new name? Only reason I ask is that I'm not equestarian but my friend is and she called her new foal Rhubarb. Sounds mental but the mother was called custard ( lemon coloured pony) I guess I may have stomped in without reading properly( difficult with a 2yr old trashing the kitchen as I type) but just a thought.....I like obscure names.
 

LyndaB

I vote for the larger one.
 

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