Listen to the voices in your head
Last night, I went out and saddled up a
gnat horse with the attention span of a gnat Ro.
We proceeded to… well, I was on her back, and she was in the arena, and we were going in a direction that was, well, a direction. At one point, she was cantering on four separate tracks and doing her best giraffe imitation. It was impressive. Less try-that-at-home impressive and more what-not-to-do impressive, but still, impressive.
And because I worry when my horse goes around traveling with her body in multiple zip codes, I immediately started trying to figure out the issue. Rider is riding like a monkey with ADD, true, and Rider’s body… let’s not discuss Rider’s body. Horse was mentally looking for every excuse to check out, true, but there didn’t seem to be a physical reason for it. Well, besides the excusable response to poorly-applied aids. But the aids were not THAT poor. Not multiple-zip-codes poor.
It nagged at me all night—Ro doesn’t do stuff like this without a reason, and being distracted is not sufficient reason. The voices in my head kept coming back to something physical. Since I was at the barn this morning, I repalpated her back and lunged her quickly to see how she was moving. She was fine.
Unhappily, I told my doubts to stuff it. Apparently, it was all crappy riding. I was glad she wasn’t in pain—of course I was—but I hate the thought that I was riding that badly.
This evening, I was back at the barn and brought her in clean her up a little—trim her bridlepath and such. Then I turned her back out. To get to her turnout paddock, we have to go through the gelding paddock. This is fine; we’re all used to it.
One of the geldings was hanging around by the gate to the mare paddock, but he retreated a polite distance. I unhooked the gate and started to lead Ro in, but she balked. I looked back to see why—surely, standing still for two whole seconds hadn’t turned her feet to lead?
She took advantage of those two seconds to spread her legs and proposition the gelding. Who looked very confused.
I tossed her in the mare paddock and even though her new BFF had come down to the gate, Ro was miserable. Girl just can’t get a break—no one ever lets her have a good time.
So—coming into raging heat last night. This explains a lot.
But she got today off from riding (planned in advance, the timing was just good) and hopefully in the next couple days she’ll stop thinking with her ovaries and we can go back to our regularly scheduled program. I think this was still an improvement over her spring transitional heats, but clearly she and I need to sit down and sort out our schedules so that only one of us is having an off day at a time.
And my instinct was right after all. There was a physical issue.** I should trust myself more.
** Ro would like everyone to know that there wouldn’t be a physical issue if the two legged creatures would stop interfering and just let her get on with finding a suitable mate, TYVM.
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