Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Username: Password:
Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: Farrah's journey  (Read 563 times)

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Farrah's journey
« on: May 27, 2014, 08:41:53 pm »

So...I said I wanted an automatically gaited dead broke just get on and ride horse.  What did I come home with?  A coming 4 year old Tennessee Walker mare.  Well, I got one part right - she is awesomely gaited!  She is small, 14.1 and narrow bodied, so going from big 15.1 Echo to this tiny little thing is quite an adjustment...however, I love her forwardness and responsiveness.  She reminds me a lot of my Frosty.  All business under saddle, just wants to go forward, and doesn't really care for standing still..lol.

This little gal is very good minded.  She's not spooky or reactive, but has energy.  We brought her home on Saturday, 5/17 from Arkansas.  It had rained right before we got there, so the only place I could really ride her was up and down their driveway.  However, I found her to be obedient even with her herdmates running around next to her. I really liked that and the fact she listened to my seat cues to stop and was light in the bridle. 

Cliff rode Hannah and I rode Farrah a few days later and she did nothing wrong at all - just wanted to go forward and is somewhat energetic when you first get on.  She is doing better about standing for mounting and waiting until I ask to move off.  I let her gait on out and burn off a little steam, and then she calmed down and walked nicely.

Morgan and I rode in the fields later in the week (she rode Cruz) and again, she was very good - even better, and we went down a hill and into a creek and up the other side and she has lots of power, but is very controllable.

This week we've been doing lots of ground work, round penning, turning into me, changing directions, and standing with two eyes on me.  I have also introduced her to the mounting block - that's where she gets to go for rest and petting, in preparation for teaching her to pick me up.  I put the halter and lead on her and again had her going both ways nicely and then stopping and backing with a wiggle of the rope.  She really likes being in my space, and gets a little pushy.  I am sure she's been spoiled rotten - pretty little thing that she is just got loved on all the time..lol.

She's decided after our trailer ride on Saturday to the farrier and then the long drive to get Echo and bring him home from the trainer's that she really doesn't want to get in the trailer, so we worked on that tonite too.   She showed her displeasure at me trying to drive her forward toward the trailer by doing some nice little rears, but that wasn't a good idea as she got her front legs spanked with the string every time she put them in the air.   After she showed a lot of resistance, I just took her back to the round pen, and worked her there over a tarp and in between the mounting block and the fence.

Then we came to the yard and worked again and rested next to the trailer.  She finally put a couple of feet in, and then I backed her out, and then she got all the way in and discovered I had a bucket of feed waiting for her.  She got to eat a little, then I backed her out, and we did everything again.  Then I let her get in and eat the rest of it. 

After the trailer training, I took her and tied her to let her soak for awhile while I helped Cliff with trimming Echo's feet.   I worked with Echo a bit in the yard, then put him up, then I untied her and let her graze in the yard for a bit, then I put her up. 

It was a very productive day!  I think she's going to make an outstanding little mare.  She's got everything and is pretty to boot...oh, and all my horses were mud balls today because it had rained and they had rolled.  Not Farrah - not one bit of mud on her.  I got her up and brushed out that long thick mane and tail so it wouldn't tangle..lol..she's such a diva!
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2014, 02:40:02 am »

I was also thinking back last night at a couple of things that have happened with her that really made me stop and go..wow.

The 2nd day she was home I had her by the back porch.  She had a rope halter on, and she had reached down to the ground to pick up some hay on the ground.  Cliff's hoof stand was there and somehow she got part of her halter caught on the hoof stand, which is pretty heavy, and when she lifted her head back up, the hoof stand came too!  I stood there panic stricken - OMG - if she freaks this could be an awful wreck.  She was on the blocker tie ring, but I had visions of the hoof stand hitting her in the face or the eye.

No.  She just stood there.  It took me a few seconds to figure out where it was hung up and unhang it.  I was amazed that she didn't react and pull back.  Good girl!  She's also stepped on her lead rope when she was grazing and when she tries to bring her head back up, she was stuck.  And she just stood there, no getting upset.  She just stood there until I made her move her feet and she freed herself.   :)

Really liking this little mare's mind and someone has taught her to give to pressure very well.
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2014, 08:19:21 pm »

Tonite Cliff rode Hannah and I rode Farrah - we started in the fields next to our house.  She didn't mind leading or following and rode right out with energy.  She is very steady for such a young horse.  Barely any spooks, and we rode by some scary farm implements and through thick corn and wheat fields with dogs running everywhere.  We went down some gulleys and she picked her way very carefully and is good about walking up the other side and not rushing.  At one point across the wheat field we slipped into a nice little canter - I had the biggest grin on my face!!!!

Then we rode back home and past our house on the road to my friend's house.  Dogs, lawnmowers, kids on bikes, etc.  Really not a bobble and we had some very nice gaiting too.  Hannah and Farrah are a great match in speed.  Hannah does a little foxtrot and sometimes more of a broken trot, but she is still very smooth.  Farrah tends to be more lateral but has a nice little rack in there.

Donna wasn't home so we hung out and let the horses graze a bit, then headed home.  I could hear my Cruzie screaming for his ladies all the way down there - about a mile away.  Cruz has the highest pitched whinny of any horse I have ever heard and Farrah heard him and started wanting to rush a little on the way home, and got somewhat nervous and tense. She had a small spook at a stump, then wanted to rush a bit again, so I put her in circles until she calmed down.  Then she and Hannah walked home on a loose rein. 

I was pretty darned happy with her!!  This little gal is just a babe.  Cannot wait to see what she's like by the time she is 6 or 7.   :) :) :)
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2014, 08:20:39 pm »

Here are some pics from tonite.  :D

[attachment deleted by admin]
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2014, 05:30:39 am »

She is filling out and looking good.  I've been throwing the feed to her and trying to get her out and exercise her 3 X a week whether it's riding or ground work. Mostly it's been ground work but I think she's already gained some weight.  She's getting pretty sassy, too!  lol...but she gets better every time I mess with her. 

Her main issue is getting in my space.  She wants to crowd me and it's annoying...but we are working on it.  I am practicing hand walking, and then stopping and she should stop and back up a few steps.  Too often she doesn't stop and gets right in my space. She also doesn't want to disengage her hind end on the ground but we are finally getting it done.  She had also decided she didn't want to load in the trailer but she's coming around quickly since that's the place she gets to rest.

And her tying...much improved.  Since she's figured out the longer she stands there and paws...the longer she stands there.  Now when I go to tie her she is almost immediately cocking a back leg and relaxing - since that is the way she gets to go graze in the yard. :)

Last night in the round pen I was making her move her feet.  I point, and I want her to canter.  If she does, I do nothing. If she doesn't, I kiss to her, and if she still doesn't, I spank her butt with my stick and string.  She is getting really good now at cantering off when I point.  But last night she definitely tried me a couple of times.  She is really starting to fill out and look good because I've been feeding her really good, and she's feeling pretty frisky and sassy!  Obviously, since when I asked her to move out she snaked her head and I could tell she wanted to kick out at me.  After a few changes of direction, she was really not happy I was making her move her feet, so she did kick out at me.  She was nowhere near me - it was just a bratty "I don't wanna!" moment, but then she just had to keep on running faster until I asked for another change. 

When I got a few nice changes of direction without snaking her head or kicking or being a brat, I let her come in to me and then we went to the mounting block for some praise and petting.   At first she didn't want to approach me on her right.  But last night she did and I let her stand and rest for awhile while she got some rest and scratches.  ;)

I took her to the yard and we practiced our trailer loading.  I would ask her to load, and she would put two feet up, then I let her stop and praised her.  If she backed out on her own before I could ask, to the yard we went, doing our lunging exercises and changes of direction.  Then I would ask her again.  If she stood in the trailer, she got to rest.  Pretty soon she loaded herself and we stood there for a few minutes.  She is still not entirely relaxed in there - but she will get there.

She's a fun little project - and I love seeing her gait around on the lead line.  She's just a gaiting machine!

Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2014, 09:43:16 pm »

Cliff and I rode this morning. Again, I am amazed at how steady and good minded Farrah is. We mostly walked, and gaited a little too. No spooks at all...LOVE that!! She will lead or follow. Her main vice is she doesn't like standing still - likes to keep moving, but we are working on it. 

 At one point we had to go through a corn field, and I mean a tall one.
 We had thought a road ran next to it, but it had disappeared! Hannah and Cliff were ahead of us. The corn was super thick, and she did very well, until something happened, and she sort of shot forward and didn't want to stop, so I did a one rein stop and got off. A corn stalk had gotten caught in the piece that connects the front and rear girths, and was running between her back legs...lol. Bless her for not bucking me off!

 I dislodged the corn stalk and walked her the rest of the way thru the corn. At the edge of the field I got back on and we rode the treeline home. Two big mules came running to the fence to see our girls, and Farrah wasn't afraid - she just wanted to go meet them.  Again, not a spook and she walked home on a loose rein.

 I think she's pretty darned good.

Then later tonite:

So tonite a lady came to look at Cruz..who I am selling. She is a very experienced horsewoman and he did great for her. Except for 1 thing. While she was riding, she suddenly took off her hat and waved it over his head, just testing him. He was totally unprepared for that and he spooked right out from underneath her, crashing into Farrah in the process....and bless her, Farrah didn't spook at all, but stopped when I asked her to as we checked to see if the lady was OK.

 Thank God she was, and she was laughing, saying it was her fault and she shouldn't have surprised him like that. Her friend was riding Hannah out with us too, and of course good Hannah stopped and stood and waited for her to get back up on Cruz.

 Cathy, the lady who was trying Cruz really liked him in spite of that. Otherwise he was perfect for her and she likes his handle, the way he opens gates, and is very responsive to seat and leg. We are supposed to contact her when we get back from our trip. I hope she buys him - she would be perfect.

 And I just have to say AGAIN how pleased I am with my little mare. She has a head full of sense! Every time I ride her I like her more.



Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2014, 03:02:14 pm »

So, Farrah acted like she wasn't too fond of the clippers the other day.  So I did some approach and retreat with her that day.  Then, night before last I did it again, and he seemed a little nervous at first so I would wait until she stood and was quiet, then I would turn them off.  A few minutes of that and I could touch her shoulder with them, then was able to go ahead and clip her bridle path.  She doesn't waste energy being scared of stuff.  Love that! :D
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2014, 06:32:03 pm »

So, today Miss Diva did finally roll in the mud and her long, thick mane was atrocious.  So I got her up and gave her a bath and she was a pill - not wanting to stand still, pawing when tied, and being a general ass.  After I got her rinsed and was trying to braid up her mane, she continued to be a pill, so I decided to lunge her in the yard, and she was even more of a pill - pinning her ears and snaking her head and barely doing what I asked.  So I thought it was probably safer to take her to the round pen.  I put my rubber bands for braids in my pocket and took her to the round pen.

I asked her to move off and she took off at a gallop...OK..lol, if that's what you want.  She was very dramatic, jumped over the mounting block and tore around like a wild woman.  I asked her to change directions and she practically reared up and ran the other way. Well, at least she looks pretty when she's being an ass!  She kept wanting to gallop so I let her, and finally when she slowed down and I saw that she was relaxing,  I asked her to come in and stand for a minute while she got some air.  We did this about 4 more times until finally when I asked for a little more speed I got a relaxed canter instead of a wild gallop, and she changed directions nicely. 

Then I asked her to follow me to the mounting block while I again attempted to braid her mane.  This time she stood without moving for quite a while, then she got a little bored and decided she'd move off, so I went ahead and made her move off, asking her to canter around the round pen again.  She again acted a little pissy so I let her canter more, then changed directions and asked for a canter in the other direction. When I finally got her to slow down and just gait around with a good attitude, I asked her to come in again and we went back to the mounting block, where she proceeded to cock and hind leg and relax and let me finish.

We just got back from the Black Hills Saturday night.  I rode her for 3 days in the mountains and was very, very pleased with her. She is quite a confident young mare, which I think is why she does challenge me quite a bit.  She's not scared of much and is pretty sure of herself.  The whole story is on my Black Hills thread, but basically she was pretty up the first day but settled after a few miles, and the other days she was just darned good.  Really gave me everything she had, excellent on the hills, not mareish - didn't pin her ears or threaten to kick anyone, and gaited everywhere.  By the 3rd day I could separate her from Hannah without any big fuss.  I think the only time she spooked was when a cannon went off nearby - at Ft. Mead I think...and that was just a flinch, and it scared me too! For a nearly 4 year old, I think she did great. 

:)
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2014, 05:46:01 pm »

So, I've been working Miss Diva on the ground quite a bit - getting her to lunge nicely around me with a good attitude, and she is 99% better.  I am really getting some relaxation on the lead line now, and no rearing or silliness.  Our routine is:  I normally lunge her in our yard, and when I get a good response I walk her down to an area a couple of acres away, behind a house that has a big clear area that is good to work horses in.

I will walk, gait and canter her on the lunge line, then work on her backing up, etc.  We usually do it around 15 minutes or so all told, and when I get a good response I let her graze out there.  Then we go back to our yard where she gets tied up.  Once she settles and stands without pawing I again let her graze in our yard.

She is such a good girl.  I will sit there and watch her and lots of time she will just go to the gate on her own.  Other times I will just call her and she will walk right to the gate.  She also comes when called out in the pasture.

I don't think she ever had much ground work done, so this is all new to her, but to me it's a must that she know how to lunge and behave on the lungeline.  We have also been roundpenning as well and I am getting good changes of direction, and she is cantering when I point, and gaiting and walking when I ask - she is really starting to rate well.  We are now working on her standing still for mounting and standing until I ask her to move off.  Much better there as well and she has learned to "pick me up" at the mounting block.  She is leg yielding well, and now we are starting to work on turning on the forehand and the haunches and side passing.

On the trail, she is just so good - I still can't really believe how NOT spooky she is.  Great minded, very well behaved around other horses, no pinning her ears or threatening like some mares (and geldings for that matter!) can be.
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2014, 06:51:04 pm »

So, Farrah's only real training issue is now her standing still for mounting and standing until I ask her to move.  This is a huge one for me as I've been hurt twice on horses that moved or bolted when I tried to get on.

So yesterday Cliff and I worked on this together.  I would stand holding the lead line, not holding her though - that's her responsibility - and he would get on, sit for a minute while asking her to stand still, then get off. He did this on both sides a few times.  She is better, but not 100%.  Evidently whomever trained her was young and limber and jumped on her as she walked by..lol.  She also doesn't like standing still on the trail.  However, in SD after we rode pretty hard for awhile she was learning that when we stopped it was a good time to rest! So I think it's just time and miles on that one...

Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2014, 08:27:59 pm »

So, Farrah is for sale, so we are continuing to work on the standing still for mounting and standing until we ask to move off.  We got a good response finally out of her Saturday morning, so we immediately took her saddle and bridle off and rewarded her.  She is such a sweet, beautiful and SMOOTH girl - someone is going to enjoy the heck out her!

I have several people interested in her - and I have finally found a gaited appy mare that I think will work for me.  She's quite a distance away but luckily her owner comes to TX twice a year.  She reminds me a lot of Frosty in her movement and her looks.  Will post updates as they happen...
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...

gaitedappylady

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
Re: Farrah's journey
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2014, 09:00:26 pm »

Farrah sold to the first lady who came to see her.  She is going to turn her out for the winter and allow to to grow up and fill out and start riding her next spring.  She has a great home and I am very happy!
Logged
Rita, N. Texas


Have you had a kindness shown?  Pass it on...
Pages: [1]   Go Up