Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Happy Birthday, Darcy!

Today is my puppy's fourth birthday!

tiny cow dog the day we got her.
We went to McDonald's for her birthday sundae.


She was nice enough to let her sister come along.


She got a stuffed animal of Horton, but Pig stole it as soon as it was out of the wrapping paper and Darcy went to work shredding the paper. She has her priorities straight.


Robert had a dressage school today. I'm so happy (wait for it...) to have a Happy Mouth (tah dah!)again. He's so much lighter than he was in the slow twist I was schooling him in after his break. The plastic on the HM with the roller was starting to get chomped too much and I like the way he goes in the slow twist... but he goes like a gem in a HM. Plus it's legal. Always a bonus.

Today's ride made me appreciate how far we've come in a year. Bobby was so responsive, so willing, so soft, and so lovely the whole ride. He had a few moments where his llama side peeked through, but overall, it was just an easy hour ride where we worked on what I wanted to and accomplished it without fighting.

Where were we late winter/early spring last year? We were trotting and cantering ground poles because he wouldn't go near a raised fence, no matter what height. He was beyond terrified of whips. He couldn't canter a 20 meter circle, and could barely manage to hold a canter down the long side of the arena. He threw massive temper tantrums when faced with a cross country jump. His favorite thing to do on trail rides when he wasn't getting his way was to rear up and fly backwards. He had no lateral movements, and no sense of being on the bit.

This time around? He jumps 3' confidently. He's schooled 3'9. I carry a whip when jumping, and I can use it when needed without him taking offense. He's got a stretchy canter on a 20m circle, and a collected canter on a 10m circle. He counter canters. He's got the start of a flying change. I'm totally confident in starting the year at Novice and moving up to Training mid-season. He ponies on trails, or he can go out alone and walk on the buckle. He's solid in First Level dressage.

of course, he's still pretty ugly and he likes to drop weight for NO REASON,
but he has a topline! and a mane that lays flat!
Now I have to be mean to my stripey kitten and schedule and appointment to get her spayed. Poor tiny kitten.

7 comments:

  1. Oh, Happy puppy birthday! My dog turned 4 this year too.
    I really like happy mouth bits. That is what I evented my arab in much to many peoples surprise. As long as they don't kill it, which some of my others do they are great.

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  2. Yay Bobby!! Such a great improvement. :)

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  3. Darcy is gorgeous! Happy birthday.

    Yay for you and Bobby. Thats an awesome achievement.

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  4. Happy Birthday Darcy!

    &, Bobby sounds like he's doing awesome! Bet you guys are going to kick some serious ass this upcoming season ;) Makes me a believer that llama pissy horses can come around too.

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  5. Happy Birthday Darcy! What a beautiful pup!

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  6. Your dog is so cute, Happy Birthday Darcy! And Bobby eat more food !

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  7. Wow!! That is an amazing amount to accomplish in a short time. And you did it while mourning the loss of your Red man. Bobby looks very handsome and fit. It gives me hope for where dickie and I will find ourselves in a few years.

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