Friday, April 12, 2013

Mental Health Days

Today Robert wrapped up his three days off to help with a brain reset. Hopefully. I didn't go out to the barn at all Wednesday, but I did go out yesterday and today. I spent a long time grooming him, stuffing treats down his throat, and going over his body inch-by-inch to see if I could find anything to explain his latest spaz. Not that he needs a physical excuse. Sometimes he's just a tool.

I really couldn't find anything, so I took him down to the indoor and put him on the longe for around ten minutes. His only "off" step was switching behind while cantering to the right, but it was because he was trying to chase Darcy and canter on a circle at the same time and he almost fell over. Not only is he sometimes a tool, but he's also sometimes just plain dumb.

"I iz a smart horsie. Yes I iz."
Today was mostly the same routine. I got to the barn and gave him a massive grooming to get as much of the mud off his naked body as I could. The only good thing about it getting cool again tonight? Being able to put his sheet back on. Dirty beast. I noticed that he was dropping his hips a bit as I was really laying into him with the curry, so I gave his butt a good grope and decided to give him a little all-over massage.

He really liked the area along his crest, and of course the area where his neck injury was, and he was surprisingly willing to let me rub his girth area. Usually that gets me within inches of being bitten. He must like his new elastic dressage girth. As for his bum, it took me forever but he finally had loose, jiggly muscles. He was so super tight back there. No wonder he didn't want to jump. I've upped my workout and I don't even feeling like moving let alone piggy backing someone up and down hills and over jumps. He was far less interested with any neck work on the right side, choosing instead to show me all his stretching poses and trying to pull my coat off. "Carrots live in your pocket! I need them now!"

Another longe and he looked fab. Light on his toes, a bouncy walk and trot, and a topline that wiggled as he went. I let him graze for twenty minutes as grass has exploded this week and all the poor, starving ponies have been locked into their sacrifice areas. Poor, poor ponies.

So I'm hoping that between the bute, the time off, the massage, and the much underrated bonding time, I'll have a happy, willing horse on Sunday. Let's make this a better schooling than last year's April go-round, Robert!


  1. Jiggly muscles are good muscles! Bobby is lucky to have you - at least is smart in his decision to be a good enough boy to keep you loving on him. :)

  2. Want to swap your sunny cross country with my frozen in ice-storm? I am so ready to jump all the things!

  3. Love the last image. Maybe I can get that message across to Houston... Have fun!

  4. Have a great schooling! Did you teach yourself massage or are there certain books/sites/articles you refer to?

    1. Also curious about this!

    2. Bobby has a massage lady come out once or twice a year and she's very hands on with the owner. The last time he got done, she did one side and I did the other. I'll have to do an entire post on it one of these days as you guys aren't the only ones to ask. It's "easy" as you can't really go wrong with massaging any area, but it's super physical. I'm certainly not licensed in any way. :)

  5. Yeah I want to know about what you do in the massage too!!

    PS our horses are so spoiled! What I would give for 3 days off and a massage lol!

  6. Massages are amazing, seriously....there are tricks to get their organs moving along better too, to help with stomach aches, etc. It's just crazy cool. There are a lot of great videos on Masterson that you can do yourself and it's uber light pressure with a lot of reward to the horse (their releases don't lie!)

  7. Love that you can give him a once over/massage - I have to get someone in to do that! Bad owner = me!
    Hope you've a happy working horsey after all the bonding! :D


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