Monday, November 30, 2015

Cold Holiday Weekend Made Better

Shockingly, late November might not have been the best time to get a new horse.  Of course in theory, it was perfect.  Get him home right before a 4 day weekend, have unlimited hours of playing. Winning all over.

In reality he came home Tuesday afternoon and the temperature started dropping Wednesday morning.  By Wednesday late afternoon it was frigid and snowing.  Snowed pretty much all Thanksgiving and stayed well below freezing and overcast until this morning.  When I had to go back to work.  Thanks Colorado.  I guess this why most people buy horses in the spring?  Oh well, I always have liked doing things the hard way.

Luckily, Odin has been more than up to the challenge.  I have sat on him every day except Saturday, just letting him wander around the indoor mostly with gradually increasing amounts of trotting and Sunday we even cantered a little.  In spite of no turnout, being in a new place, and the weather, he has been a champ.  If he keeps this level of sensible brain he is going to be a perfect horse.

He did get some turnout in the indoor on Thursday and enjoyed a little bucking and running which was cute and surprisingly short lived.  Then Sunday morning I threw him on the longe since there were too many horses for turnout and I thought he might need play time. I also don't know if he had ever worn a quarter sheet before and didn't know if he would object.

HA.  HA squared
Calm down there crazy man

Odin just lazed around all "why are we doing this small circle crap?" and then went quietly under saddle.  We did our first real trot work and he just got better and better as we went.  Softening in the contact and actually holding it there, reaching more under himself.  This is definitely a well started horse which will make life easier as we go.

Like most horses I have ridden, he is more flexible to the left and we have work to do on the right.  But even to the right he has reasonable softness, just requires more work and more leg.  Always more leg!
My husband sure loves taking pictures in our indoor.  But look at the relaxed babyface.

Not going to lie that cantering is a bit more of a mess at the moment.  He has been mostly out of work due to the popped splint so he is pretty weak behind.  Add that to his stifles not being of much help at the moment and it is a struggle.  You can tell he mentally knows - he threw in one perfect transition to the right, but he isn't strong enough to really hold the lead behind or canter more than a lap without losing rhythm.

And I was warned when I bought him that his left lead is not solid yet.  Which the vet said isn't surprising as his right stifle is the weaker of the two.  So we didn't even try that lead.

I also didn't want to push the cantering as he was starting to get a smidge more exciteable.  He even spooked once by scooting forward two steps.  That was adorable.  Please Odin, let that be your spook forevermore.
He snuggles too!

All of which helped us develop our short term game plan.  To be conservative, probably two more weeks of light work to be extra sure the splint is set.  He also is due for the farrier but with our farrier's schedule might go late, so again, keep it light until feet and splint are good.  Focus on the trotting and maybe add some poles in during this time.  Some longing and side reins are in order to start building up the back end/stifles and get back into canter transitions.

Most importantly, act really cute, make friends, and learn more about each other.
The cute is a given.  I have total new horse blindness.  He can do no wrong right now


  1. Such a dream! Also all the carrots and cookies;)

    1. You are right, cannot forget ALLL the carrots!

  2. Such a dream! Also all the carrots and cookies;)

  3. Definitely has the cute down pat.