Although this schedule is a bit tiresome, I really like it. This morning we struck out to the field under a cloudy sky, balmy 46 degrees and....NO wind! Nekkid pony time!
Fancy-Schmancy Pony/Future Event Horse was certainly feeling his oats today. We put in a hard trot set to the top of the hill, and on the way back down he was really wanting to move out. Sorry, pony. No Can Do. I didn't want a fight on my hands, so I did the next best thing; I distracted him by ignoring him and paying attention to the rocks in the path. Now, these are no ordinary rocks. They are about the size of tennis balls/softballs. No bueno for the two of us, once the deep snow settles in. So, I set to the task of going from side to side on our path, covering about a 10ft area and chucking whatever rocks I could find, far away from us. After a bit, Rigsby was as interested in the rocks as I was and I had a semi-calm pony for the rest of the trip home. This is going to be my 'on the way home' task over the next few days. I'm looking forward to hitting the drifts when they are up to our knees (hellooooo cardio!), and I don't want a twisted human ankle/pony leg, to ruin our winter workout plans.
Playdate #2: These are usually occurring between 11pm-12am.
Things I have learned: Rigsby isn't a big fan of stall confinement. He's taken to such charming vices as: right-brained behavior in his stall, and chewing on the wood walls.
This is where playdate #2 comes in handy. I've asked my BO to make sure Rigsby is the last horse brought in, to minimize his time inside. This also minimizes the time he's exposed to the commotion of people in the barn. Then I show up 4-6 hours later and bring him to the indoor to stretch his legs and most importantly; LEARN. After our sessions, which are usually no more than 45 minutes long (15 min of stretching/30 minutes of classroom), he walks back in his stall quite contently and hopefully, sleeps through the night.
His weight gain is coming along well. I'm hoping by December 1st, I'll be able to cut his grain intake by 1/3, and add another alfalfa flake to his evening feed program. More hay, less grain! I also ordered his new winter blanket. He'll be rockin' a HW 1200D Weatherbetta Freestyle for the days it gets below 10 degrees, and for the REALLY cold days, I got him the matching neck attachment. I'm working on a bad-ass warm beet pulp mash for his morning feed on those cold days, as well.
Another thing I learned this week: Rigsby LOVES carrots! And, if you throw a carrot into his water bucket, by morning the carrot and all the water are gone. We're talking about 30-40% increase in water intake. That's HUGE.
All in all, it's been a great week!