Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Blog Hop: Location

Courtesy of ASSFS!

As most of you know, I live in Hell, aka the Deep South- eastern Alabama.

While it's definitely not Horse Mecca, I am impressed by the variety I've found here- everything from therapeutic riding to trails riding to A circuit H/J and all the disciplines in between.

Average Costs (for English):

  • Board
    • Pasture- ~$300- $400
    • Stall Board- $500-$700
    • Training board isn't really a thing here, but then again, I am not one to actively seek out training board.
  • Farrier
    • Barefoot- $35
    • Front Shoes- $110
    • All Four Shoes- $170
  • Hay Bales- the price has really increased with the drought
    • Coastal/Bermuda- $5/bale, $35/round bale
    • Timothy- $12/bale
Weather? Do you like moisture? 

Temperatures are mild (mid-40s at the lowest during the day) in the winter, but the humidity makes the cold really sink into your bones. Spring/summer/fall usually hot and moist. It likes to rain in the afternoons or for days straight. Or recently, not rain for 4 months, then rain for 4 days straight.

Riding demographic? I think it's definitely a lot of trail/Western riders, with a smattering of English riders.

Other notes? We are super close to Pensacola, FL and Marietta, GA, as well as reasonably close to Brownland, which is lovely. We also have a vet school with a pretty darn stellar equine department.

Frustrating things in the area? Lack of "special" horse care- it was super hard to find chiropractic work until earlier this year. There are basically 2 farriers in the area consistently. Lack of big(ger) name clinicians (or any clinicians, really, except Doug Payne last year). And I understand all those standpoints- it's not as though this is a high dollar horse area, and most people do Western or leisure. Having lived in Lexington, KY for all of my riding career, my view of the horse world is very warped and very privileged. 

- K & C & L

Thursday, December 1, 2016

My Christmas List

Dear Santa:

I've only got a few things on my Christmas list... They're nothing *too* crazy.

1. Thinline Ultra Sheepskin Half Pad or Thinline Shims

In my never-ending quest to get my saddle to fit Lexie- the Ogilvy is too puffy and pinches her withers. It's this or new shims for my cotton one to try to lift my saddle *just* enough for some wither relief. 

2. Back on Track Mesh Sheet

Lexie has been a little tight through her back, and with her 15th birthday on the horizon, she needs some love.

3. Asmar Shirt in Merlot

I have been in love with this forever, and it comes in burgundy- one of my favorite colors!

4. Grooming Tote

My plastic grooming tote is a nuisance to fit in my trunk, so I'd love something mildly smooshable.

5. New sneakers- with internships on the horizon, I've got my eye on a new pair of comfy sneakers for clinics. Maybe a pair of New Balances or Nike Theas?

6. AN INTERNSHIP- I really just want a plan for next yet, let's be real.

7. New joints for Candy

Two new hocks would be fantastic, Santa. Candy is tired of Lexie having all the fun.

But really, all jokes aside- what is on your Christmas list?

- K & C & L

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


I finished my National Veterinary Board Exam yesterday- I also may have laughed and/or cried in the testing center (so many pig and chicken questions... why?). In other happy news, a little over a week ago... I went to a horse show! That's right- I finally went to the year end AHJA show, after an entire year of trying to show, and by God, Lexie kept it together so we could both go.
We vet students escape Auburn sometimes!

I *did* have a small breakdown (exhaustion, stress? Who knows...) in a lesson pre-show, so my trainer put me in the 0.75m and 0.85m jumpers. We went clear both rounds in the 0.75m and got two 5ths. We were clear our speed round in the 0.85m, and placed 5th. She got a little strung out so I had a rail in the 0.85m qualifying round, so we didn't make the jump off and didn't place in our 4th course.

Our course was the same for all 4 courses (sans the jump off) and was not quite my style. It was basically inside straight-diagonal-outside-diagonal-outside with a few singles thrown in. Courses with a lot of straight lines backfire with Lexie because she builds as the course goes, and we use the turns to collect and sit her on her butt. By the end of the course, we end up a little strung out. I still had a BLAST though in all of my classes- she was perfect in warm-up, and, while a little mad about being ridden in her gag bit, so fun over fences. I can't wait for the fences to go up so I can use fence height to my advantage with her.

On Sunday, we did the equitation challenge. We got cut our first round- a horse ran up Lexie's butt, she tried to kick, and.... well... we both had a small meltdown and just made small circles in the center until the round was over. Crowded rings will never be my thing, and a freshly clipped freight train in a snaffle in 40 degree weather probably didn't help things either. I did get to meet Hillary of Equestrian at Hart briefly, and meet Bear and Sonny, who are the absolute cutest.

Overall, while I wish fences had been bigger, I managed to stay out of my head and have fun. Overall, I'm proud of my little powerhouse- she may have been mad at staying in a stall for 4 days (Hillary can totally vouch), but she was totally on her A game in the show ring.

- K & C & L

Tuesday, November 1, 2016


Currently hardcore studying for veterinary boards (November 22nd!), working on job/internship applications, and all around figuring my life out.

Lexie is most likely on a 5 week vacation while I prep for boards and go home for my vacation block, so nothing exciting there.

Hopefully, I will be back on top of my blogging game come December with exciting news!

- K & C & L

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Vet Bill Online Sale

Since Candy tried to amputate both left legs last Sunday, I'm selling a handful of things to help cover his bandage material costs.

Soft Shell Show Coat- $75 plus shipping.

Kingsland Breeches- $80 plus shipping

More to come as I dig through my tack trunk!

For people clothes:

- K & C & L

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

October Questions

A fun little blog post- October Questions!

What do you consider “jumping high” for yourself? 
Right now, 3', but the 3' is starting to look "normal" to me. I hope the mare and I keep up the progress.

What are your short term goals for riding? Do you think you’ll reach them?
Short term goals... are really just to keep riding, and remember why I love the sport. Ideally, I'd say I'd love to try and make the Doug Payne clinic this year, but I'm not sure my schedule will allow. I'm still in the middle of a burnout, so I'm currently just trying to push through this funk and get to the other side.

Long term goals for riding? Do you think you’ll reach them?

I have modest goals- show 1.20m consistently and strongly. Tinker around on the AA/A circuit. I'm sure I'll reach them eventually, but I don't expect to do that before student loans are paid off, so at least 10-15 years in the future. 
Really, I just want to keep jumping, keep riding, and keep improving.

How many barns have you been at in your riding career? 

Two private barns. "Eight" barns in my riding career (technically, 6 actual properties, 7 different businesses). I started riding at a saddle seat barn, and have been at 7 H/J facilities.

How many different trainers have you been with in your riding career?

I've worked with 5 total, but only 1 for less than a year.

Ever worked at a barn? What did you do? 
I worked at the second barn I boarded at. I fed, blanketed, and turned out horses in the evenings in exchange for riding Candy (!) on weekends.

Scariest thing that has happened at your barn? 
We had a girl cut off the tails of horses, and write on the wall "All your horses will die" at one facility. Lately, it was Candy shoving his legs through a cattle trough.

Why are you the way you are?

Have you ever given a lesson? What level was the rider? 
Nope- I am nowhere near qualified to give lessons! I'd would love to teach one day, but I'm not qualified in any way shape or form.

What is your opinion on the accuracy of critiquing riders online?

I think it's fine; I've reached out to have myself critiqued. As long as it remains civil, I think it's a great learning tool.

What is the ideal height of a horse for you?

Ideally, I think something 17h or taller. I ride rotund 16.1-16.2h horses right now, and I've always looked a touch too small.

So close to the ground. I still want to steal her away. My mind is tellin' me no. Heart is tellin' me yes.
- K & C & L

Monday, October 24, 2016

Updates and Disappointment

For reasons I'm not going to disclose, I've had to leave my current barn. I'm back at my trainer's personal farm, with a hefty vet bill.

I was meant to spend that sum at a horse show this weekend, but mare decided to colic, so we stayed home. She did fine- just a mild impaction and gas colic. Then Candy put his legs through a cattle trough in the sand lot where he was resting after a collateral ligament injury.

So I'm hurting financially- being out a weekend's stay at a hotel, and a vet bill that is astronomical. I'm also hurting emotionally- this past weekend really burned out my love of the horse world. Candy is on stall rest for two weeks, with bandage changes every other day. Lexie is recovering from colic and some mishaps in her care.

Overall, I'm not sure if it's worth it, particularly as I look into low paying internships next year. It may be time for a break from riding, but I don't want that. I also want to be realistic.

I don't know where I stand with: taking Lexie with me, moving Candy with me, or even continuing to ride in general.

- K & C & L

Friday, September 30, 2016

Yes- I'm Alive

I've just been slacking on the blog front. Mental exhaustion will do that to ya.

But I am alive, both mentally, and physically, because... I rode fire breathing mare in a SNAFFLE. A RUBBER snaffle.

We've been "training" for the Hunter Derby at the year end show (which I don't get to go to thanks to my on call schedule- you rock, vet school, thanks for making my life *fantastic*). We needed a "hunter appropriate" bit for Lexie; my trainer recommended a pelham since Lexie will "go in it" and she "doesn't like anything anyway". Being the weenie adult amateur I am, two reins on a rogue freight train who kicks is just not what I want to deal with on 3-4 hours of sleep and in a ring with 3-4 other riders who don't understand my mare kicks, so I suggested, why not try the rubber snaffle. H snorted, and asked me if I was feeling brave, but we gave it a whirl.

A while back, I was reading on COTH forums about bit options, when I stumbled across a user who watched a clinic with a reputable BNT (I want to say Bernie Traurig). There was a girl who was riding a hot horse in an elevator, but the horse was blasting through her hands- he swapped her into a rubber Dee and the horse went much better. I went out and purchased a rubber dee off eBay... and let it sit in my trunk for 7 months until this Wednesday.

Well, mare loved it. It's a different feel with a much thicker mouthpiece, but I surprisingly had brakes despite a mild bit, and, when I half halted, mare wasn't angry. She's still not seeking contact 100%, but seemed like a much happier horse.

I guess it's a weird case of bitting down on a hot horse. She's a ball of fire 24/7, but she can get unresponsive/worse when she's uncomfortable. It's also a testament to my hard work as a rider (trying to focus on my positives)- I struggled to ride her over small fences in a loose ring snaffle in the Doug Payne clinic, but could *relatively* comfortable pilot her over 2'6" fences on straight lines. We're finally figuring each other out, I'm trusting her when she gets quick, and she's listening.

So if my eq could come back.... that would be fantastic.
- K & C & L

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Out With the Old, In With the New

I already eluded to this a bit on Instagram and Facebook, but I felt like a full blown blog post was warranted because... well... nostalgia and a lot has changed in over 4 years.

I bought the boots on the left in early 2013. At the time, I was working at Hagyard Equine Medical Center as a technician during foaling season, and loving it. I was keeping Candy at a self-care facility, and working my way back to 3'3" after a scary fall in October of 2012.

I was driving home from the barn with these boots on my feet on a Friday morning when I found out I got into vet school. I scared the daylights out of my mom when I called sobbing to tell her I got into vet school; she, of course, thought I was hurt or Candy was dying, but no- just vet school.

These boots moved 8 hours south with me, down to Alabama.

I was wearing these boots when I walked away from what was undoubtedly one of the most confusing relationships I've ever been in.

I was wearing these boots when I was on the way home from my last time jumping Candy, again, crying to my mom about retiring him.

I was wearing these boots when I was on my phone at the barn, and happened to swipe right to some boy named Phillip. I was also wearing those boots when he met Candy for the first time and tried to feed him Doritos.

Those boots were on my feet when Candy colicked last year, and we thought it was a mass (just a firm fecal ball), when I hacked Lexie the first time, when I found out Sawyer was lame.

I wore them for my dream externship, 6 weeks of my equine block, and half of my food animal block.

And now, they're worn with holes and leaking water, cracked soles and ripped leather, but these boots have been on quite the adventure in 3 years. Many rides, different horses, countless miles walked.

I can't wait to see what adventures the next pair sees.

- K & C & L

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Blessin's on Blessin's

So after a cancelled show, minimal riding, bumps/bruises, and just general grumps, I had a fantastic Labor Day weekend.

On Sunday, Lexie was phenomenal to flat- super forward and strong, but so fun. I could not stop grinning.

Then... for whatever reason, I got an itch to ride Candy. Candy has a reputation for being kind of a spaz, so I was a little nervous riding him on a blustery day. He was little cranky/confused by the saddle, and wouldn't stand still while I bridled him up, or when I got on. But we did w/t/c for about 15 minutes (1 lap at a trot and 1 lap at a canter in both directions), and he was so good. Obviously, not sound, but he was so excited, and wanted to frame up.

"My bridle is on. Where are we going?!"
Then I did a spur of the moment lesson Monday, and I brought my big girl panties out in full force. Lexie was being quick and strong, so we just worked on turns, which is the best way to make her collect and come back. She was doing so well... I may or may not have asked my trainer to put the jumps up a hole, which is unprecedented for me. My confidence is finally on its way back! Now... if I can stop slouching and stop breaking my wrists while I ride...

Overall, it was a fantastic weekend, and reminded me why I work so hard to do what I do!

- K & C & L

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

A Series of Unfortunate Events

My blog lately:

I swear I'm trying to be positive/optimistic. I started my Dairy rotation last week- 5 AM milkings, 6 AM feedings, but no on-call and ONE FREE WEEKEND. So naturally, I JUMPED at the chance to be able to go to Pensacola last weekend for my first away show. I swapped my 3 day weekend for a 2 day weekend, wrassled some money out of my savings, and started packing.

Stellar lesson on Lexie last Tuesday- worked on tricky rollbacks and bending lines. I barely batted an eye over 2'9" fences. Lexie had her usual oomph, but loved the newly enlarged arena.
How amazing is this arena?
 Flatted her on Thursday- goal was just to have a solid flat, work on lengthening and collecting, but overall positive experience. She was off in her right front.

Still off Friday morning, so we elected to not go.

The upside? I have found the magic potion to draw out her abscesses: epsom salt poultice.
Her abscess ruptured the next day after applying this- and has been draining nicely. I've been hacking her bareback up and down hills to maintain fitness, and going to try to have a lesson tonight, even if it's just flatting and pole work.

Plan of action is applying Durasole to all four feet, and adding front pads during the next farrier round to hopefully avoid abscesses. It's not totally Lexie's fault- the weather has been hot, moist, and rainy, and the new ring footing is still being perfected.

Abscess booties...
We are scheduled to do the year end show in November (a little stupid since I have boards the next week, but I'm on vacation- plenty of time to study), and hopefully one other show in between now and then.

Just never fails that I plan a show and something happens, but this also has the added twist of 3 extra days of 5 AM cow milking. Maybe I'm just not meant to be showing/riding this year...
Pretty much my life in a nutshell, right?
- K & C & L

Thursday, August 18, 2016

I Got 99 Problems...

But sleep ain't one.

This week (month really) has been a fiasco. I've had some kick ass rides and kick ass lessons, but in the last month... :

  • Neck zit
  • Stopped sweating
  • Baseball lump on flank
  • Cut on fetlock x 2
  • Rain rot/butt crud
  • Bite wound
  • Hives
  • Hives
  • Hives
  • Fetlock ding
  • Rain rot
As you can see, the kids have been having a wild rumpus- Lexie was in heat and extra temperamental and Candy was his usual ding dong of a self, rolling in ant hills and trying to ~*~canoodle~*~ with his lady. 

I've been trying to convince the barn owner my kids are usually not this high maintenance.


Because I have been sick the past few days. Whomp whomp. And lost an entire month's worth of SmartPaks....

Still trying to lesson tonight if I can power through the day. No promises.

-K & C & L

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Lesson Recap: Remembering Basics

I am a super mental rider. I have the muscle memory and technical skills to pilot around most small courses safely, but once my brain gets anxious, all bets are off. My lesson the week before last was an example of that: awkward distances, losing pace, and just feeling awful all around. It's hilarious that I was watching Olympic cross country and it triggered in my brain: "You can jump the small stuff. Just sit up and back, dummy." Yes, that's right- watching people ride around a massive cross country course inspired me to jump 2'6"-2'9" without going into the fetal position.

In my defense, though, mare likes to run around like this.
But will still look like this in the end.

Every lesson, my trainer asks me, "Did you bring your big girl panties today?" and gets answers from, "Forgot them.", "I ran out.", "Kind of.", and lately, it's been, "Let's find out.". While I was warming up Lexie, we did get the super nice comment of "Who is that?" from a friend who didn't recognize Lexie being a rockstar on the flat.

We started jumping easy- trotted a crossrail a few times, then trot into the crossrail to a small 2' vertical in 4 strides. We successfully kept it at 5 strides every time, but the first few efforts we definitely took a flyer due to piloting errors. But the 3rd time, I held her for 5 consistent strides and we pinged over the fence. That's the best way to describe it- she felt round and using her hind end, and just ping! over the jump.

We added a "lollipop" turn after the line, going straight after the line, turning along the fenceline, and rolling back to a vertical. Again, striding was tricky until I remembered to sit back, wait, and keep her in my hands. Then we did it again: ping! We added another rollback, and again, sit up, sit back, and ping!

If I could bottle that feeling, I would. Now to just get my heels a little deeper and legs a little tighter. The mare is loving jumping in a grass paddock/grass field, and loves hacking out in the grass. Now... if she would just quit doing silly little things to herself (neck zit, stopped sweating, then started sweating, then a bug bite/sting/baseball size lump, then a small cut on her fetlock).

-K & C & L

Monday, August 8, 2016

10 Questions for August and Life

Not too much happening in my end of the world. I have 2 horse shows on my radar, but we all know how my schedule likes to accommodate those. Lexie finally came back in full work after a month off due to feet issues, and now has decided sweating is for ~*~losers~*~. I put her on Guinness and electrolytes this week, and if that doesn't kickstart her sweating, I may give 1-AC a try. In a world of 95 degrees and 80% humidity, mama needs to sweat. Candy continues to be a dweeb and force his girlfriend to die of heatstroke- he stands in the sand by the barn waiting for pets, baths with the hose, and so he can steal hay from other horses' mouths (not kidding). Poor Lexie stands under him for a little bit of shade. Hopefully, we can all get settled in and back into our working routine. And hopefully, this Alabama summer may let up a little.

Since nothing is too new in the horse world, I figured I would do Viva Carlos' 10 Questions for August.

1. What is your biggest source of caffeine that gets you through the day? (drink, not just brand) 
I drink caffeinated Crystal Light and Mio by the gallon- I drink maybe 2 liters of it a day. In the fall and winter, I love green tea and chai tea. 

2. Do you honestly think your trainer is the best trainer for you?

I think my current trainer is a good match for my needs right now- laidback, supportive, and pushes me when I need it. I really like that she's open to me going to clinics/riding with other instructors as well all in the name of pushing forward my riding abilities.

3. One token of advice a fellow rider/trainer/horse person told you that you still remember to this day.  

Ride inside leg to outside hand. If I panic and remember one thing about riding- this is it. 

4. If riding meant costing your family so much money that they’d be basically on poverty line, or making your family terribly unhappy (if they were not supportive or understanding, etc.) would you still do it?

If it was just me alone and I could afford equine emergencies, absolutely. Significant other and I have had to make some compromises (I ride in the late evening or early morning, 4-5 days a week, spend one night solely with him); riding is so important to my mental health I think it would be hard for me to cut it out completely because then I would be a wealthy, angry person instead of a poor, happy person. So... I would continue to ride, but find a way to make it work.

5. (Girls) would you ride while pregnant?

I will ride until my doctor advises against it or until my land whale of a body can't get into the saddle.

6. How do you tell when a horse likes someone/has bonded with you or someone else?

I think it depends on that person and their interactions with the horse. I think Candy has bonded to me because he will look to me for my reactions in stressful situations and comes to me for comfort. Lexie and I have a working partnership, but I don't know that we've "bonded".

7. Are horses capable of loving, in your opinion?

I think so.

8. If you could have one horse from your past come back for 5 minutes, who would it be, why, and what would you do with them in those 5 minutes? 

I've been lucky to have not "lost" a horse yet, per se. I would want a sound Candy at his peak fitness and athletic abilities just to pop him over a fence or two, and ask for a couple half passes.

9. Should a trainer also be a friend, or should it be a student/teacher relationship? 

I think a trainer should be a mentor- so halfway between a friend and a teacher. I've asked trainers about things involving horses, and come to them when my life has hit the fan and I don't know where to turn. A mentor keeps it professional, but you can still develop a very personal relationship.
10. One piece of advice/training you were given by a trainer or mentor that you look back on now and view it as incorrect? 

Buying vaccines from Tractor Supply....

- K & C & L

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Photo Dump Update

First hack at the new barn.

Waiting for his daily bath.
Ponies and I are settling in well at the new facility. We had our first lesson last week, and while I rode like a sack of potatoes, Lexie and I were so happy to be jumping in a field again!

- K  & C & L

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Current Riding Playlist

1. Ritual// Ghost B.C.
2. Ain't No Rest for the Wicked// Cage the Elephant
3. Role Modelz// J. Cole
4. Lazaretto// Jack White
5. All Along the Watchtower// Jimi Hendrix
6. Tessellate// alt-J
7. Don't Fear the Reaper// Blue Oyster Cult
8. Don't Let Me Down// The Chainsmokers ft. Daya
9. Alright// Kendrick Lamar
10. Fat Girl (Thar She Blows)// Steel Panther

The chorus of Fat Girl is Lexie's anthem.

Moving from our temporary field to the new barn on Wednesday! So excited to get back at it.

Explains Candy's behavior at all times.

- K & C & L

Monday, July 11, 2016

Low Jumps, High Standards

Some barn drama and my lesson on Lexie this last weekend got me really thinking about my personal philosophy when it comes to riding. I putter around 2'6-2'9. I lease an older, but athletic horse, who, at her peak was going 1.10 m. I've been leasing her a year, but have been puttering around 2'9 at the most for about the last 7-8 months. Why? A myriad of reasons. Confidence issues for one- a freak face plant over a 3'3-3'6 vertical several years ago, fitness issues from the horse and rider, soundness issues for the horse, and a desire to move up in a manner I agree with.

My personal philosophy is that jumping is flatwork with speed bumps. I want to be fit. I want my horse to be fit, and our flatwork impeccable. Because Lexie is an older horse with past soundness issues, I'm careful about bringing her along, and limited to riding 4-5 days a week with school, work, and being on call. Would we be jumping higher if I rode 6 days a week every week? Without a doubt- she would be fit, and I would be ready to handle her fitness.

H and I had an epiphany during my lesson yesterday- Lexie doesn't run to be a brat. Sometimes, she really feels herself and wants to be strong and fast, but her flat, strung out canter? It's fitness. She isn't strong enough to hold herself, and I'm not strong enough to help her. Does a strung out canter matter over a cross-rail, 2'6, even 2'9? No- it really doesn't. Even most horses can get away with 3' flat and strung out. But to me, I can't ride a horse who feels like that.

I want a powerful hind end rocking back. I want a supple, rhythmic canter. I want to have a partnership with my horse where I am strong enough to support her when she needs it and she is strong enough to hold herself without me.

We're getting there- this last month hasn't been easy between abscesses, weather, and schedules, and Lexie has lost fitness. So H lowers the jumps in the lessons, and I up the frequency of trot sets and trot work and increase the time of our flat sessions (although, being on call the next 14 out of 21 days will make it interesting). 

I would rather jump small and tight than big and sloppy. I want the flatwork to be there before anything else. Once the flatwork is there, the jumps and the distances fall into place.

- K & C & L

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Flat Session: An Internal Dialogue

If anyone wants to know how my loose ring snaffle rides on Lexie go... Welcome.

K: "Leg yield a little bit. Get straight. Come on. Leg yield the other way. Freeee walk... Lift your back... Thank you..."

K: "Well, this trot is lovely. Even better over poles. What a good girl."

K: "Get off your forehand at the canter. Yes, we can hand gallop. Stretch your legs. Good girl..."

K: "Alright, let's try some collection. Equal pressure between hands and the mouth. Add leg to make her push up into the bridle, ask for a little contact. Leg into the hand, leg, leg, leg."

K: "Ok, leg yield at the trot. LEG YIELD. STOP CANTERING. Leg yield, leg yield, leg yiiiield- thank you."

K: "Haunches in- FOR THE LOVE, STOP CANTERING. STOP RUNNING. WHOA. BACK UP, back up, back up. Good girl. Light seat, slight squeeze, think swingy, and... haunches in, haunches in."


K: "Less hand, more leg and seat? MORE hand, MORE leg, MORE seat- stop sucking back. Supporting inside leg, wiggle inside hand, squeeze outside hand, bend, bend, bend, aaaaand that's it. That's an actual canter. Look at you, using your back. Look at me, actually riding. Now let's move off the circle, and trot."

K: "Ok, let's trot like a full size horse... What are your legs even doing right now? Are we gaiting? Are you having a seizure? Use my core, small post, smaller post, smaaaaller post, sit deep in my seat, and stop my body, aaaand we're... not square."

K: "Well, my thighs are burning, I can't feel my left hand, my abs hurt, and my back hurts... You're done. Let's walk, and you can have a cookie. Thanks for not killing me, and thanks for trying so hard for me."

"I do wut I want."

- K & C & L

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Guess Who's Back... Back Again...

Lexie's back. Tell a friend.

Homegirl is SOUND. The vet peeked at her and Candy- declared both problem children sound. Candy is still getting foot rads done to be safe, because with his body type/breed/age, I worry about a Cushing's related laminitic episode (I am a vet student after all).

I finally hopped on Lexie Friday for our first ride back. She was breathing fire. When she gets like this, I like to run through Novice and Training (eventing Novice and Training) dressage tests until she supples, and then we call it quits.

Saturday... I guess I was so excited she was back, I temporarily lost my mind and popped her over some medium cross-rails (2'6" in the middle). She was wonderful- responsive, and really using her hind. I'm still wrapping my head around the fact that in order to slow her down, I have to bend her, and ADD leg to get her pushing up into the bridle.
Lexie finally got her new half pad and she loves it!

We're lessoning twice this week so hopefully more posts to come.

- K & C & L

Monday, June 27, 2016

Whomp Whomp

Lexie is still vaguely lame- her owner, H, is consulting the vet to figure out where to go from here. H wanted me to ride her this morning and see if she was less lame with weight/not on a lunge line. She exploded on the lunge line in her usual fashion to the left, so I'm hoping she's still improving. Lexie was a doll for our quick ride. She's willing and wanting to be forward and round, happy to be back at work, but still uncomfortable. There's no heat, no digital pulses, but she's still tender in her left front foot. I'm just hoping it's stubborn residual bruising.

Shambly hairnet situation. Not 100% awake at this point in time.
Basically, got up at 4 AM to go ride a lame horse at 5 AM. Candy was his ridiculous self; he and Lexie got moved to the fat kid paddock, and he wanted to leave with us. Once we left, he galloped/gimped rapidly up and down the fence line screaming.... So... the herd bound factor is real for him.
She is a pretty lady. I can't blame him.
"Never leave me again."

- K & C & L

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Updates on Updates

Lexie probably 90% sound right now. She's got some pretty bad hoof bruising from the abscesses, but has a shiny new set of four shoes. She just finished up her Magic Cushion regimen (and it is now stuck everywhere), and got her last gram of Bute yesterday. I'll lunge today, and if she's sound, give her another day off before returning her to work. If not, she'll just hang out until she is sound. Bruises take time to heal!

The only benefit of a solid week of no work, half hour of grooming, and bathing- DAPPLES.
Ok, so this isn't the best picture of dapples, but she's so shiny.

(And for Lexie, tons of cookies shoved in her face so she would stop being a cow about Bute- Dearest Lexie, I can still reach the top of your head even if you lift it really high. Stop trying.)

Candy has been happy to spend tons of time with the girlfriend (of course).
He's gotten his fly mask funk, so lots of Blue Stuff is being applied.

I've been hacking Charlie, one of the lesson horses. Being a lesson horse, he's quirky (tongue sticks out, never knows where all four limbs are at the same time), but he seemed thrilled to pop over some 2'6ish fences. He wasn't thrilled when I asked him to be round and work through his hind during our lesson last week and his flat session yesterday, but you can't always get what you want, Charles.

Other than that, Equine Critical Care has been a blast. I've been passing nasogastric tubes, placing catheters, and finally got to rectally palpate a horse! It was so cool feeling everything, and now I can finally make a little more sense of where things are internally.

Finally snagged a photo of the elusive LilaBear.

- K & C & L