Sunday, April 24, 2016

The Big Reveal



I've been hinting on and off that I won't be showing O next year, but be focusing on Dylan instead. Quite a number of people have been asking why, and wanting to know what's going on. 

Dirtaloosa

The first part of that answer is pretty obvious: I have an incredible riding horse for a limited time only. I want to fully utilize that! 

Dylan was supposed to go to his first WE show this weekend, but we ended up having to scratch due to several factors - the weather, a change in venue, and a super late running schedule that would be putting me back at home just in time to unload the horse, drop the trailer, and drive back out the driveway to go to my first clients of the morning on Sunday. You think I'm kidding but I'm not. I had no idea a one day show would need three entire days. I would have taken an extra day off had I known! As it stands, I decided it would be prudent to stay home, keep practicing, and prep for the next one, which is next month. Dylan won't be showing much (hardly at all) until October/November, when I expect things to ramp up a bit for him - O's season will be winding down and finishing at that point. And that's when she will be done for awhile, while I focus on him.

But she won't just be sitting around... she'll have something else to be doing in the meantime! 





Now before I get any further, I of course feel obligated to give my little speech asking people to not send me hate mail and tell me I'm an evil irresponsible ass for breeding my horses. I'm 31 years old now and I could give a damn what people on the internet have to say about my decisions, seriously, but it would be nice to not have to deal with all of that hatred. People are UGLY about breeding. I wrote about it when I bred Pmare last time. I got absolutely the WORST flack when I talked about breeding Gogo, so much so that I'd walk away from my posts in tears sometimes. It was horrible. 
Now of course, I am older and give way less of a damn about basically everything. So, I have no qualms about sharing my experience this go-around. Most everyone was super positive when I bred Pax, although I did get some 'you should kill yourself you cruel person' emails when I decided tentatively put her up for sale. Whatever. 
Surely by now I have also appeased the "get a rescue" people. Between Darby, Zuul, and the mules I think I have done my fair duty. And I would absolutely rescue again. And will rescue again!
So, if you have a problem with my carefully thought out and planned for breedings - go away and thanks for reading. Don't let the door hit ya where the good lord split ya.
And if you don't have a problem with it - read on my friends!!


I really believe that O is just one of those super rare once-in-a-lifetime finds. Taking a chance on a spastic, almost unrideable $500 warmblood was risky and may not have paid off for someone less determined than myself. I believed in - and will always believe in - this mare, and fought to find something she would succeed at and love to do. And I found it in driving, and she has been basically unstoppable ever since. Is she difficult sometimes? Absolutely. But I wouldn't want a deadhead slave animal who plods along just doing whatever I ask anyway. That's the kind of animal I *wouldn't* breed. I want my animals to be full of life and power. And now that O has a job she loves, the only troubles I ever have with her are when she is either super hormonal or when something isn't quite right - like needing a chiropractic adjustment. The rest of the time, she gives me everything she's got. She is sound and strong, a beautiful mover who can turn on a dime and go forever. I want to replicate all of those things.
And Dylan of course needs no introduction. He is truly a testament to his breed. His show record is so vast and extensive that I wouldn't be able to fit it all into a simple post even if I tried. He is 15 and is completely sound, and requires no maintenance aside from the basic stuff I do for everybody. He is an incredible mover. He has schooled through Intermediate and I have no doubt that he would be a Grand Prix horse if he were in more capable hands than my own. He is charming, kind, gentle, and easy to handle - watching him bloom into his own over the past 6 months has given me this really amazing insight into his personality, something I think a lot of people breeding don't have access to. And to have both of these horses here - to be able to work them both, have a history with both, and a relationship with both - that is extra special to me. 

What I am hoping to get out of this cross: Big, flashy movement, short coupled and powerful, and the ability to do dual time as a dressage horse and a driving horse. I believe in breeding like-to-like as your best chance of really getting what you want, and I think these two will really deliver. It's not so much trying to improve on one thing or another - it's trying to enhance what they both have to offer. Dylan is homozygous so I am guaranteed a grey - it would be amazing to get a matched pair of driving horses out of these two in the future. But, we shall just have to see about that. 



BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE!


I've talked a few times about wanting to breed P to Lasting Impression. Look at his bloodlines. Do you know who he is? That's Gogo's FULL BROTHER. He was a GP horse at one point, approved with the Belgian Warmblood studbook, and is now still around in his 20's, bebopping around hunter courses with his adult ammy rider, still sound and going. That says a lot about longevity to me, something I did not get with Gogo. Whether or not Gogo's issues were just freaky ones, or whether or not there was some unknown reason she could never quite heal properly, I'll never know. But at the time, I didn't want to breed her because I was worried her subsequent foals would have the same issues she did, not to mention the fact that I didn't think she could carry the weight of her pregnancy on her legs. And I still think that was very sound reasoning, but I regret losing her and not being able to breed her, and still miss her, every day.

But now I have access to these bloodlines once again. I have access to them, and the chance to combine my most beloved bloodlines into one. He is a fine stallion that I would have been happy to pick anyway - but because of who is he is, he is extra special.


What I am hoping to get out of this cross: A big, good minded all-arounder. Baby should jump like crazy but probably will move quite huntery, which is fine for my purpose. Gogo did too, and while she wasn't going to be a upper level dressage horse, for an eventer she was exceptional. This stallion is known for putting really quiet minds and good size on his babies. I do hope one day to get back to eventing, and do more foxhunting as well. This one is not going to be an upper level dressage horse by any means, but it should be able to do just about anything else with athleticism and a good heart.



Anything and everything can happen when trying to get mares pregnant, so I'm not going to jump on anything until we have heartbeats confirmed for both of them.


I can't tell you guys how excited I am for both of these crosses!!!!!!!!!!!!


48 comments:

  1. Holy crap, soooo very exciting!

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  2. I'm so happy for you! I loved your waiting for Pax blog posts, I can't wait for twice the baby anticipation!

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  3. How exciting! Two babes at once. I can't wait to see them.

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  4. It makes little sense to me (the first revealed cross) but you are into it and have the money to do it right. No matter what is produced I am sure you will point it in its best direction.

    Would have been really fun to watch your filly Pax grow up and train but if she isn't all you wanted, glad she will have a great new home.

    Have been reading your blog since Gogo was alive for the jumping and dressage and I guess I am not typical of your current primary audience any more. Miss reading about making your go in those arenas, barefoot no less.

    Best of luck on those foals.

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    1. I think you're confusing my current interests with my past interests. I am not an eventer any more. I am far too physically crippled at the moment. Lots of painful physical therapy has me back in a dressage saddle with a lot less pain than I used to have but it will be a long time, if ever, that I'll be able to get back to jumping. I personally think the second cross makes far less sense, rather than the first. I want to drive, I want to continue in that direction. I do all of that barefoot as well. I'm sure you miss reading about my old endeavors, although probably not as much as I miss doing them. But right now there is only so much I can do. I have to live in this moment and take the direction I have been steered in, unless I want to sit crippled on the sidelines forever. If I wanted to just event and do nothing else, right now I would have no horses and not be riding at all. So, I found something else that I love and pursued that instead.

      The only reason Pax sold was because a very good friend made a good offer on her - it's not like I'm selling her because she isn't what I want. I didn't intend on selling her.

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    2. Andrea,

      I wanted to thank you for blogging and tell you that your ups and downs have moved me over the years.

      I think what struck me and got me hooked on reading about your adventures was your systematic approach to reaching high goals and your complete dedication to the wellbeing of your horses at all times.

      It was so fun to watch you improve and tackle new challenges, especially when they coincide with what I want to do well (mainly dressage and jumping with a lot of sweat equity.)

      I probably should have been following you more carefully in the last year. I did not realize your health had taken a turn, if anything I was looking forward to you training your youngster and it being a victory in creating your own work of art from scratch.

      I see now the direction you are headed and I hope you keep with your goal setting and give-em-hell with your home breds in the ring of your choosing.

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  5. That's super exciting! Congratulations. I can't wait to see what you end up with.

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  6. Eeee so exciting! Can't wait to hear about the babies!

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  7. I would sign up for something like either baby in a heart beat (if the first baby wouldn't be grey - no hate just not my thing), I am seriously LOVING P's next match. That sounds like everything I would want in a baby.

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    1. I can't stand greys either... But I figure that is what I get for saying I'd never own one!

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    2. I said I'd never own one either because I never liked one, but now I have one and he's made me love grays... so you never know really. Besides anything that is half Dylan and half O is TOTALLY worth having no matter what color LOL!!

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  8. Super exciting! Can't wait to read everything!

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  9. Oh my god! I am SO flipping excited. Your place is gonna be a baby sanctuary next year!1 SQUEE

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  10. eeeeeeek!!! Ahhh I am so excited for you! I really love both of these crosses. Will they be due around the same time?!

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  11. Woohoo! So excited for you and can't wait to see what you get.

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  12. Like "timingisperfect", I followed you here from your Gogo blog, and so am absolutely thrilled you have the opportunity to combine her bloodline with your beloved Metro's.

    You did so well capturing her in your blog posts, that a lot of old readers will most likely favour the second revealed cross.
    That match makes perfect sense - even more so going off everything you have said about Pax, and her (hunter-type) way of going which seems similar to Gogo's.

    I don't think the above mentioned comment was negative, I imagine a few people would have enjoyed watching Pax's journey with you and that's because you have, again, done so well capturing that little foal's personality in your previous posts. Surely everyone who reads your blog knows that you wouldn't have just sent your filly to the first offer that came up!

    The first cross makes little sense to me too, but I have no doubt that it's carefully thought out and - as you said - will hopefully be more fitting to your current needs. I am so excited for you and sending all of the best wishes your way for an easy-as-last-time breeding season with your two mares. Also super excited to follow along for double the fun - I always thought O would make a great mum going off her reaction to baby Pax last year.

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    1. Why does it not make sense though? I think it makes perfect sense personally!

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    2. Why does it not make sense though? I think it makes perfect sense personally!

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    3. Eep - please don't read the above as if I am questioning you! I know you've had a lot of negative keyboard warrior comments with your past posts on the subject of breeding, but that's not what I was getting at - and not what I read "timingisperfect"'s comment as getting at either.

      It doesn't make sense because I don't understand/know of the desirable attributes of a driving horse. I only mentioned it because you had replied to a comment saying that the second cross made far less sense. Having a dual dressage/driving horse makes little sense to me also, but that's not to say you're wrong for doing it. As I said, I'm sure it's a well thought out match and in the future it will all make perfect sense to those who can't quite picture the combination right now.
      You know these horses, you're more than capable of breeding a nice foal. It doesn't have to make sense to your readers, and it doesn't mean we're not rooting for you to get your dream foal :)

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    4. Ah I see. As far as I can tell, the only difference between a good driving horse and a good riding horse is the brain. You can have an idiot spooky bucking rearing moron as a riding horse, but it won't cut it as a driving horse. That's about it really!

      If I were doing fine harness stuff, it would be different. Those horses are long backed and flatter crouped, and just go roundy round an arena. They go hollow and high headed. But what I'm interested in, combined driving - it's just like eventing with a carriage. You don't need a good sustaining gallop, but you're in need of some stamina. You need soundness and good bone. You need power from the hind end, and the ability to turn on a dime. And, if you want to be competitive, you need some flash. Just like eventing!
      Lots of people ride their driving horses. It is the ultimate cross training for them. Doing dressage work with your driving horse is always recommended when possible! Hell, the lady that won our division at Sunrise Ridge came out on Friday night to school her horse - in a saddle. She rode him. Then harnessed up The next day and beat the pants off of all of us. The only reason I don't ride O is because she does better as just a driving horse. But I would ride her all the time if it were not so. I want something I can do both with.

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  13. I can't wait to see the O/Dylan cross. I'm a believer in the Andalusian. I also believe in sensible breeding. If no one bred or sold then I wouldn't have the horses I've had.

    I have thoughts of breeding my mare in a year or 2 as well.

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  14. So exciting! I think they both sound like fantastic crosses, I can't wait to see O's baby especially!

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  15. Such exciting news! I think the first cross makes sense, but I am a die hard Andalusian fan! Maybe people think the baby will be too thick? I dunno, but for driving and dressage I think it will be incredible!!

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  16. Oooh, exciting! I'm really interested in what the DylanxO is going to turn out like.

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  17. I have been dying waiting for this post! This is so exciting. 2017 is going to be so exciting for you guys!

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  18. Does Dylan have any other foals already on the ground?

    Do you know what type he throws, other than them being grey, I mean?

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    1. I don't believe that he does. But he comes from 6+ unbroken generations of extremely consistent producers of upper level and sound horses. So there is a good chance he will replicate that. One way to find out!
      We will have to see what O produces. I know less about her parentage than I do his!

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  19. Also. YAY. More babies to watch grow up!

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  20. So exciting!!! Impression looks like a studly Gogo, and I have fallen for Dylan and O, so I am excited to see what they produce together. I am also a sucker for grays ;)

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  21. I'm excited to see what comes out of both of these crosses!

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  22. Yay!! These crosses should be amazing and so fun to watch them develop!

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  23. Lots of exciting things in your part of the world. Props to you for even talking about breeding--I wouldn't want to deal with the whole internet thinking it gets an opinion on your personal life. Looking forward to more fun baby pictures!

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  24. super excited about the Dylan/O baby!! I think they are both so gorgeous.

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  25. Oh my gosh, this sounds so exciting. I couldn't stand the wait for Pax to come out, that was long enough, so I cannot imagine how exciting this is for you and how impatient you must feel! It also works in beautifully to focus on riding Dylan whilst O is knocked up.

    The first cross sounds wonderful, and makes great sense, especially with a view to creating a driving / riding pair! And the second cross - oh gosh - mating this special pair who each carry 50% blood & genes of your lost heart horses, Gogo & Metro? Wow. That's hella, HELLA special. xxx

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  26. Exciting!!! Wishing you as good of luck with these two as you had with the lovely Pax!!

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  27. You know...I hear a lot about rescue. I used to be involved in it. My needs changed, however, and I purchased what I wanted and needed.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with breeding or purchasing what you want. You cannot replace knowing exactly what has gone into the training of an animal. Being able to select and stack genetics in your favor is the ultimate luxury.

    In my experience, those that tend to aggressively demonize purchasing or breeding over rescue are not actively involved in their sport. Life is too goddamn short and fragile to engage in morality pissing contests behind our keyboards.

    Glad to hear of your success and happiness. I've read your blog since the beginning with Gogo, and you've done your best with every animal that has crossed your path. Chin up, girlfriend!

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  28. I can't wait to see these babies!!

    How much fun to have two running around and playing together.

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  29. Such an exciting time! I wish I had the guts to breed Daatje. I have always imagined crossing her with the Cremello Lusitano stallion Saphiro. Imagine a dilute Friesian/Lusitano cross! Serious baby-envy here!

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    1. OMG you should do it!!!!!! I would LOVE to see a Daatje baby, especially a buckskin!

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  30. I think both crosses make a lot of sense, and can't wait to see what happens!

    Pax is going to a very good home. The fact that you're keeping the right of first refusal cements you in my book as a responsible breeder. There is NOTHING wrong with selling an animal whose potential can better be brought out by someone else, as long as you're prepared to bring them home if things go wrong.

    I do hope that Pax's adventures will be blogged by her new owner, for the same reasons I miss Imogene updates: through your blog, I've grown attached to them and want to hear how they're doing! :)

    I can't wait to hear the continuing saga of the rest of your herd, and am looking forward to meeting the new babies via your blog when they come!

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  31. So exciting! These crosses are both close to your heart, and I'm so happy for you <3 Can't wait to see the little squishes (and fingers crossed that all goes well between now and then)

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  32. O is such a cool mare, such a nice type. You'll probably get a really buff, short coupled, super strong round little powerhouse on the first cross. The second cross will be a floaty bay elegant hunter type. Can't go wrong with either, but especially interested in O's foal.

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  33. SO EXCITING!!! I've read the blog since the Gogo days, although I rarely/never comment. I am, along with the rest of the blogging world it looks like, SUPER excited for both these crosses! Best of luck!

    Also, I'd like to second the request for a Pax blog! I'll miss her adventures. :)

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  34. SO exciting!!
    I have '97 Lemgo baby. We're still doing 3' jumpers and I really think he could still do 3'6" easily at 20 years. He is awesome and has a fantastic mind (you can follow us at www.jumppretty.wordpress.com). I have been trying to find more Lemgo babies (and grand babies) in hopes that I can get another from his line in the future.

    I can't wait to see what you get from these two great and important to you lines!!

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  35. I am SO excited for you!!!!!! You are going to have two amazing babies!!!! I can't wait to see them. I honestly can't even decide which one I'm more excited about... the fact that you get to blend the Gogo/Metro bloodlines is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I am so glad you have. Then an O/Dylan baby is something I've wanted to see since the day Dylan was first mentioned on your blog lol. I can't wait! It's going to be torture waiting... :D

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