Custom blog header by Bre!

In Loving Memory...
~ Gogo Fatale ~

6/2/01 - 10/11/11
~ Forever the Marest of Them All ~

Saturday, February 27, 2010


There is no possible way to properly describe the nasty weather we've had these past few days beyond a few choice words like "UGH" "CACA" and "DEATH". The horses have been stuck inside for days, and thankfully are all outside now getting their bucks out so they can stop attempting to sling all of us into walls. Tuesday, the first round of turnouts got out, but then it started to sleet in a sideways fashion, so everyone else got stuck inside. Wednesday, it continued to sleet/mist/snow/rain all day, so everyone stayed in again. Thursday, it freaking POURED all day long, torrentially so, and so once again, they were all stuck inside and doing all sorts of unpleasant things like colicing and getting cast, I'm fairly convinced, on purpose in order to spite Mother Nature. Unfortunately their colic/cast/rearing/bucking/bolting dances were not enough to appease her, and yesterday the snow came in sideways at 50mph for a large part of the day. We don't have TOO much new accumulation - maybe 10 inches? - but enough to send cars shooting off the road and panicked CT residents to the store to horde food and gas. I was with a few friends of mine last night at someone's house, and on her way home one of the girls flipped her car upside down off the road. O.O That marks the point of the season where I think I am DONE with winter and am quite ready for spring now, thanks!

Despite the snow, the horses really were climbing the walls yesterday, and so I kicked a choice few out into the weather, one of which was Gogo. I'm not doing her any favors by keeping her inside at this point (or myself, because with her high-as-a-kite attitude I might get killed if I don't find an outlet for it), so out she went. The medical turnout is small enough to keep her from doing anything ridiculous, but big enough to let her walk around a little and just be OUT in the fresh air. She definitely appreciated it but came to the gate in two hours and was like, all right bring me in now!

Horses did go on the treadmill as usual....

Here, Rahlo and Gogo demonstrate how even though your treadmill is covered, sideways snow can in fact interrupt your nice stroll.

Under saddle, Gogo has been hit and miss a little, given how hot she's been. Thursday, she was really quite excellent, starting out spooky but really settling in to some decent work at the end. She did about half an hour of walk, and 15 or so minutes of trot before I called it a day. It wasn't without a few reining spins away from the A end of the arena where the Door Monster lives, and a few ridiculous leaps when the other rehab horse in the arena squealed and went leaping around, but once she settled in I was very happy. The interesting thing is that I tried the cyprium eggbutt again, not willing to give up on it, and lo and behold she was fantastic in it! So what changed? Only one thing: I lowered the bit in her mouth. Historically, for whatever reason, when you put any bit Gogo wears at the regular bit-wearing height that you'd expect her to be comfortable in, she fusses. Not really sure why, and we've not found any dental or vet reason for it - she just does. I blogged about it once, talking about how my last boss always wanted to adjust the bit in her mouth and raise it to where it belonged, and we finally tried it one lesson. She held all her tension in her mouth, gnashing away at the bit and being completely resistant... until we lowered it again. Then, she was perfect, as if she was saying "UGH! THANK you, now I can really go on and do real work!" So, thinking back to that, I dropped the bit so it was hanging in her mouth, way lower than I'd ever really expect it to be but keeping in mind the fact that this is Gogo we're talking about here. And tada! No more fussing, no more fighting the bit. She reached for it and was light and responsive, much more so than in the mullen mouth. Hooray!
Yesterday, she was not as good. She fussed a little, threw her head around some, made like she wanted to body slam into something, then settled in to some mediocre work. I wasn't unhappy with it per se, it just wasn't as nice as the day before. Perhaps this was her way of telling me that she was NOT happy to find that she is now required to go down to the Door Monster end of the arena whether or not there is a Door Monster waiting for her down there. Gogo... you are a special girl.

Today I think we will be hacking. All this new snow is so beautiful, and I think it will be good to go along with the way we do things in the summer: two days of dressage, one day of something else, two days of dressage, one day of something else. It's much easier on her brain that way, and quite frankly, mine too.



Kate said...

Horses seem to have strong preferences, in my experience, about how high or low the bit should hang. A lot of people don't pay any attention to that, and just do it the way they've been taught - and then wonder why the horse is unhappy. I expect it has something to do with mouth structure - it can't be teeth because there are none the bit contacts (despite the supposed "bit seats" some horse dentists talk about), unless your horse has wolf teeth. I have one mare that likes the bit quite low - she carries it herself - and one that likes it higher.

We got more snow here, but not as much as you. Spring will come! (Someday)

Nicole Redman said...

There's no snow where I live...I mean...I'm just sayin'...

Amy B said...

Ugh, as a fellow CT resident, I feel your pain on keeping the horses locked in all week. I actually wound up chucking mine out in the rain for a half an hour while I cleaned stalls on Thursday and for most of friday because hey, she's got a shed if she wants it and I was sick of her climbing the walls. Hopefully we're done with this gross weather!

Akhal-Eventer said...

I awarded you the Beautiful Blogger Award, with a link from my blog:

Heather (hpalmete) said...

As much as I am against Winter (another North Eastern girl here) I am well aware that we have to go through mud season to get to Spring and I. Hate. Mud. Season. Even more than Winter. It does make me feel slightly better to know that I am not the only one suffering through Mother Nature's whims. Misery does indeed love company.