February 9, 2012

Can't Catch A Break.

Have you ever felt like life is always just trying to wear you down, and that you can't catch a break?

Over the last 6 years, starting in my freshman year in high school, I have had a total of 6 surgeries on my feet. I got new orthodics molded for me and have been wearing them since January 18th, or roughly around that time. I was stocked that finally this whole ordeal was over. But, here comes life with a hammer, boink-ing me on the head as if to say "no stay down".

At first I related it to my increased riding and/or to my new orthodics, but this pain started before my riding increased and before I got the new orthodics, but since December 18th roughly, I have had this on and off hip pain. Like my Mom, I have hip displacia (which is where your socket of your hip is too shallow for your ball of your hip). I'm not sure if that is what is causing my pain, but something is. Last night I decided that I will try stretching at least once a day to see if it makes a difference, but I don't plan on stopping my riding, not when I'm finally getting decent.

So on a lighter, less complaining note, I need some advice from my readers! At the barn there is a 9 year old QH named Legend. Usually Legend is a great boy and very personable but lately he has gotten very crabby and has attempted to bit me and other people numerous times, and one time he got a chunk of my thigh. Boss lady and S believe that it's because no one is working with him. S tried riding him because she thought he would make an awesome lesson horse, but she hopped on and he wouldn't go forward, no matter how much she enticed, squeezed, or smacked with the whip. He just took it like it was dust landing on him. He would only move forward if someone was on the ground leading him. So, riding is really out of the list to do for now. The main problem is that he is supposedly arthritic. My experience with him? I haven't expienced much arthritic behaviors. He is the one that is always bucking in the pasture and running around like a little colt. Boss lady also says not to back him up too much because his hind end is weak...well in my experience he backs up better than he walks forward. He backs up with such ease and with just a slight touch of the finger (on good days), so I'm not sure where all these awful symtoms are. But anyways back to the point, I offered to work with him Monday-Thursday, but he can't lunge and can really only do things in straight lines. Do you have any ideas of what I could do with him? S said that I could trot/walk him over ground poles, but just make it 1 or 2 at first. He is really already obediant, but I would love to teach him to ground tie which I guess is a job in itself. But, do you have any more ideas of what I could do?

Thanks for reading!


  1. When he goes to bite, have a boiled potatoe tied to where he usually bites, he gets that hot tater and quits. old time remedy of my great uncle who raised work horses

    1. Usually a good smack on the nose stops the biting. I'm more looking for exercises I could do with Legend

    2. You might consider ground driving him. That's something you can do straight lines, serpentines, circles, whatever you think he needs. It would involve quite a bit of walking on your part, though, which might be hard on your foot/hip/other injuries. Assuming, of course, that he wouldn't kick you - that would be bad!

      If it's exercise that he needs and he doesn't get enough because you can't walk as far as you need to, or whatever, you could pony him off another horse for the exercise.

      I don't know how far the restrictions on circling goes for him and how much he already knows, but you could also teach him to yield his fore/hindquarters, work on him yielding better to bridle or halter pressure, that sort of thing. All that can be done from the ground.

      That's all I can think of off the top of my head, really. Good luck with him!

  2. Hey Teah, that is an awesome idea! I can ask S to teach me how to drive. I also think ponying him is also a great idea too!

    I have already taught him how to turn on the haunches and forehand. He's a really sensitive horse which surprises me but makes him such a doll to work with.

    Great ideas!!