|Two fat old broads. Neither of them are getting any grainfoods right now - Darby is in her 30s, P is 19 and still nursing Pax, and I personally am impressed with the power of good freechoice hay!|
I've been writing a lot about Dylan lately, and less so about the mares. Blogging about 6 equines when I used to only have one has been quite a challenge, I can say! Having only one horse to focus on has its own benefits and drawbacks, as do having many. Time is quite a lot more limited when you have a number of them to deal with.
With that said, I have a good balance of horses that are doing something regularly each week, and horses that are doing little or nothing each week. For example, both Darby and P are retired, and while I might occasionally pull P out for a short trail ride, she is not in regular work. I do plan to re-breed her next year, but it will change little in her daily routine while she is gestating. All she and Darby have to do is eat and put up being being groomed a few times a week, which is quite easy to fit into my schedule. The babies also get groomed a few times a week, and we work on the usual leading and general handling. Pax is light years ahead of Uma - since she was handled from birth, she inherently trusts and likes people, and since she has been messed with this whole time, she is quite at ease with being taken out of her pasture and played with. She stands tied better than any of the others, interestingly enough. Dylan and O tend to anticipate things happening when they are taken out of the pastures, but Pax either does not get worried about these things of things, or she genuinely just likes being messed with. She is happy to shove her head into a hay bag and just stand there and eat - she is just as happy to stand immobile without one. I will start walking her further and further up the road during our leading sessions this month, and we shall see how she handles this.
|Hey look, I can get on a trailer all by myself now!|
Knocking the dust off of four horses and leading two of those around is usually quite easy to accomplish a few times a week, even with a tight schedule. Getting both Dylan and O done is quite different, and quite a lot to do. Sometimes, I don't do anything with either of them for a short period. Sometimes I only work one a day, and sometimes I get them both done. There is a balance and it is quite challenging to achieve. For example, this week I am running around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to prep for the No Laminitis conference, and for a friend coming into town next week. I haven't had time to breathe, much less do anything else. In fact, I really REALLY should be doing other things right now, like packing! I've been lucky to get the paddocks cleaned and feet picked this week. This always happens when I need to go away somewhere - all hell breaks loose and chaos reins while I try and get away. When I come back, things will settle back down thank god. I've come to see going away on vacations as almost more trouble than they are worth sometimes.
Anyway. I've already written about Dylan's goals. Currently, with O's show season winding down and his about to ramp up, he takes the bigger priority. O may have two more small shows she is doing this fall/winter, but after that there is nothing until April. Winter is the time to work on things like dressage and cones (particularly cones, as at competition length they completely bamboozle me on a regular basis), but when it rains like crazy, we have to wait the mud out before we can drive anywhere but up and down the roads. I can trailer Dylan to WD all I like, but there is nowhere indoors to trailer a driving horse that has any kind of decent footing, at least not within driving distance. What I will likely do this November is to keep her fit driving down the roads once a week, and probably attend a local charity show which has driving classes later on in the month. I am still hugely disappointed that I am going to miss Black Star this weekend, but there is nothing to be done for that.
|Looking great, getting around very well!|
|Grey in the face but still happy to see you every day|
So, if you're like me and like to make summations, bullet points, and lists:
Mare November Goals:
P and Darby: Grooming 2-3x a week
Pax and Uma: Grooming 2-3x a week, leading lessons and general handling
O: Drive 1x a week to keep fit during the off season!
|Don't mess with grandma... I missed the shot but right after this Darby double barreled at Pax. I'm impressed she can still do that!|