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Selena Session 49; Wizard Ride 119: Wizard and the Giant Peach

November 16, 2009

Wizard & JR

Sunday, 11/15/09

It has been three weeks since Wizard’s feeding regimen was altered. He now gets a little bit of senior feed mixed with his regular grain and I also give him a rice bran mash. He picked up his weight quickly and he looks lovely. His coat is glowing and his muscle tone is very good for a horse in light work.

Wizard and I went on a trail ride with Mary the Morgan and her owner. We wore our bright safety vests in order to be as visible as possible for hunters. We rode over 5 miles. Throughout the ride, Wizard was alternately great and awful. At times, he walked along like a pro, light on the bit, forward, and comfortable. And at other times, he was hopping around, kicking up a little and prancing. I thought the kicking was related to the flies (there were a few buzzing around) until Mary’s owner mentioned that it looked like he was kicking at his belly. I dismounted when we walked past the Infamous Piggies (who are gone, by the way!) and checked Wizard’s belly just to be sure nothing was wrong. I had no expectation of finding anything but there it was, on his midline and ahead of his sheath: a huge swollen tick bite! It was larger than half a golf ball, almost the size of a peach. The tick was not attached so I removed it and felt for any crustiness or oozing.

I remounted. He was still playing with me (I was pretty pleased with my riding- I was able to stay light and quiet in my seat and settle him nicely) but he was more settled. It seems like this horse is extremely sensitive to discomfort and this tick bite has been driving him mad.

When we got back to the barn, I hosed him off (he was a little sweaty in the warm air) and gave him some alfalfa.

I took Selena for a hand walk with Mary the Morgan. We did some ground work along the way, encouraging her to walk at the proper leading distance. She caught on by the end of the walk. We walked over 4 miles and encountered all sorts of exciting things: several ATVs and some random gunshots. Both mares were fantastic- they watched the ATVs with interest and merely flicked their ears when the gun fired.

When we got back to the barn, I worked on some more schooling with her. There is a mare at the barn who calls and calls calls when Selena leaves the barn. When we returned from our walk, I heard the mare calling so we practiced standing and walking around the property while the mare called. Once Selena was focused on me, we went back to the barn for some grooming and treats.

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