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Selena Ride 24; Wizard Ride 95: Crying… Crying…

September 11, 2009

Selena and Me

Thursday, 9/10/09

Yes, dear friends, you read that right, I rode Wizard for the first time in over three months :^)

September 10 is an anniversary of many sorts. It is the day I said my final goodbyes to my beloved Alibar and it is also the first day I started my relationship with Wizard. In the very beginning, I spent most of my time grooming him and grazing him but eventually he changed from my equine therapist into a riding horse.

Due to a recent injury, Wizard got a few weeks off. I have been hand walking him and working on preparing him for under-saddle work. Last week was the 6-week mark since his stifle looked 100% so it was time to ride. Due to his mysterious resistance under saddle during the past few months, I changed my battle plan. I decided to completely change the scenery and see how it works. After I grazed him for about 15 minutes, I tacked up and mounted up and we did absolutely nothing in the arena and instead went for a walk on the trails with my mom (she was not riding, she walked with us).

A trail ride after no under-saddle work in months might sound a little nutty, but I had a hunch it would work and it did. My hope is that the under-saddle walk work will strengthen him for arena work in a few weeks and also keep our heads clear while we get re-acclimated to each other.We walked on the trails for about 20 minutes. On the way out, I rode behind my mom and Wizard was a little tense, jigging a few times, but settling easily. On the way back, I took the lead and it seemed to settle Wizard. He walked the whole way back, no jigging. At the edge of the woods, I stopped him and asked him to take a few bites of grass so he did not immediately go to the barn after the ride. It worked out perfectly… and Mom got a cute photo of us :^)

Wizard and Me

After I untacked Wizard, it was Selena’s turn. The ride began very nicely. I was happy to show my mom Selena’s new exercises and how relaxed she is getting in her neck. I got about ten minutes of this relaxed warmup at the trot before the horses were brought in for feeding. As we rode, Selena peered over the fence as the horses were led into the barn. She was still responsive to my aids. When the final two horses went in the barn, the crying began. Selena began crying… even at the trot, she was whinnying a funny little whinnee-nee-nee-nee-nee-nee-nee with each trot stride. I rode her through it. I kept focused and continued our exercises. Walk, trot, walk, circle, halt, walk, trot. The plan began to work and she came back to me. I never quite got back to her original relaxed state, but I was proud that I got her back on contact without tension and she settled. Annnnd I think it’s time to check her heat cycle again.

I was also happy that I’m maintaining more contact and keeping a little bend in my elbows :^)

Selena and Me

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