Wednesday 7 November 2012

Not Much To Say

I haven't got a lot to say just a small report on whats going on.

It's starting to dry up, oh so slowly, so if the rain can hold off I'll finally get some riding in.

Also I realized that I didn't actually tell you guys how our equines are getting on so I will now, for the most part they are doing well. Madeline has perhaps a bit too much energy because they are staying in over night at the moment, Pip is well and still hasn't been gelded and now I am starting to wonder if he's ever going to get gelded but on the plus side he is so well behaved that he is really no problem, Murphy is good as ever and was working on bowing for me but now it's so muddy that's on standby, Tipper is really good and he has filled out so much since I got him, and of course Niko is his normal well behaved, calm self, I did get him to bow as well as Murphy which was nice because he is a full sized horse rather than a very little pony.

Oh and I have joined Facebook and have a fan page for my blog so if you happen to be a fan of my blog and have Facebook please go ahead and like the page, also feel free to add me as a friend If you want.

And finally just before I go I'd like to say thanks to you all for sticking around despite my long absence from blogger, and hello to my new follower thanks for following hope you enjoy the blog.


Monday 5 November 2012

A Much Needed Update

It's been a long time since my last post so a fair bit has been going on. To start with a lovely lady, whose name will not be mentioned, has allowed me to ride in her field, so Niko has some room to blow off steam and have fun. The ponies have been down too and they enjoyed themselves so that's been nice.

Oh and the circus came and set up in her field so that was nice because we got to meet the two horses that worked in it, they were both beautifully kept and they are Andalusians too which brings me on to my next piece of news.  

And here he is. I have had the pleasure of working with this fine chap, he is a 8 year old Andalusian gelding. I've been working with his buddy too, but I haven't got a photo of him, he is a Andalusian stallion. They are both great fun to work with and be around. The person that owns them is teaching me to ride and work on the ground with the horses in a classical way so it's very interesting and hard too, really hard. It's helping me with our horses too as I can apply all the things that I learn with the Andalusians to them.

But for now I am not getting to do anything with our horses as it is too wet, cold and muddy to ride so I am rather bummed out about that, but at least I got to put a funny hat on Murphy. Also our laptop died due to my dear brother spilling his breakfast cereal and milk all over it :( so I've lost my huge stash of horsey photos. I don't really want to go uploading all the new ones I take to the laptop I am using now as it kinda looks like it might break if you breath on it too heavily.

Still all in all things are pretty good with me, I hope you are all doing well and having lots of fun with your horses or whatever it may be that you have been focusing on.

Saturday 21 July 2012

Joy of a British Summer

We’ve been having some quite terrible weather here, it’s been rain nearly everyday now for what seems like an age. Here is a photo of Murphy soaked and about to be taken in, it was still drizzling when this photo was taken but the camera doesn’t show it up. All the bad weather has stopped me from riding most of the summer so far which means I haven’t been able to get Niko fit, which is quite annoying because Niko is a roarer. He has had the operation to help him but he still makes the roaring noises unless he is fairly fit and then they go away.

Also with all the rain our paddocks have become waterlogged but on the plus side we still have the portable fencing so they are still getting grazing without sinking into mud. We’ve been feeding a lot of hay rather than haylage which we normally feed because lots of our haylage has been going mouldy.

But onto a slightly more cheery note, when I have been able to ride, Niko has been going really well for me, and I’ve been getting a really nice slow canter out of him and he has been doing a fairly comfy collected trot which is very nice because Niko is not normally a comfy horse to sit on.

So all in all I haven’t really been posting much for quite sometime now because there hasn’t been a lot to report with this bad weather, I am hoping it’s going to clear up soon.

Ps I am not falling off of Niko just giving hugs.

Friday 22 June 2012

All Dressage

Today is all about dressage so with out further ado here’s a book I have recently been reading, the book is called Dressage A Study of the Finer Points of Riding and is by Wynmalen.

This book is brilliant it’s really easy to understand just what the writer is trying to get across, and I have to say it’s quite refreshing to read such a sensible and kind horseman’s writings.

As you can see it has some beautiful photos of many talented riders, I especially love this photo. The book doesn’t restrict itself to just ridden work and has advice to help you with your horse in other ways. All in all I am really enjoying this book

But enough of the book, check out these two, I would hope you all know who they are but for those of you that don’t, the lady on the left is Charlotte Dujardin, and the gentleman on the right is Carl Hester. They are both shining examples of British dressage riders and I hope to see them both coming back from the Olympics with medals, but that’s not why I’ve posted about them. Horse & Country is currently showing a TV series called Carl and Charlotte: Dressage Superstars, the first two episodes are now available to watch at Horse & Country. I’ve really enjoyed it so far.

Well that’s about it I guess oh and you might need to make an account with H&C should you decide you want to watch it but it’s free ;) and now I’ll leave you with this charming photo from Wynmalen 's Dressage book.

Sunday 10 June 2012

Oil and Horses

We all know how good oil can be for our horse’s coats and overall condition, hence the reason a wide range of horse feeds contain high oil and why some horse owners choose to add oil straight into their horses feed. But feeding oils is not the only use for them, I recently noticed that some of the horses mouths were looking a little dry, having read some of Xenophon’s writings I was interested to see that he suggested the use of oil on the horses mouth, I felt that our horses and ponies wound benefit from it.

So as you can see here I’ve applied olive oil to Niko’s mouth, this can be beneficial in many ways it helps keep the skin moisturized and soft, nobody likes dry skin and horses are no different. The oils can also help one with improving their horse for riding by softening the mouth making it more comfortable for the horse and more responsive to the rider, a win win I would say. I now apply oil to all of the horses and ponies mouths, and I feel they’ve benefited greatly from it.   

Not only is applying oil to your horses mouth great for them and good for your riding, some horses or ponies will enjoy having it put on, Niko, Pip, and Murphy seem to really rather like it, the others not so much.

But all in all I am happy we tried this, it really has benefited our equines.

Friday 8 June 2012

NAF Salts

Just a quick post this morning, about theses little lumps of goodness lots of you will probably know these are Himalayan salt licks. I recently bought five of these, one for each of our equines, we have the NAF salt licks but that is only due to the shop selling that type, considering they are all Himalayan salt licks I don’t supposes it make a differences weather it comes from NAF, Global Herb, or any other companies that sell them.

The Salt licks have been very popular with the equines most of them except the ponies waited till night to try them out. They’ve all started to lick them smooth now, this is a photo of Tipper’s one, he hasn’t had it long but it’s already starting to go smooth.

The salt licks contain natural minerals and trace elements, these licks are good for many reasons one of them being it is very rare for a horse or pony to over lick it. Niko licked his one rather a lot when he first got it but then shortly after calmed down, and now only gives it a little bit of a licking every night (our equines are still staying in over night).

Anyways there is only so much to talk about a lump of salt and I did say just a short post, that’s all from me.


Tuesday 5 June 2012

It's Good To Be Back

Hello everyone it’s been the best part of two months since I last posted but here I am. It’s odd that my blogs hits barely went down during my absences but I am of course not complaining about that, anyways onto how the horses and ponies have been.

For the most part everyone is quite well perhaps some of them are a little on the chubby side but nothing to worry about, as you can see here Murphy is looking very healthy. I have started working with him on the lunge now in preparation for ridden work, if all goes to plan, which it normally doesn’t, I’ll show him the ropes of work under saddle this year then he will be turned away for quite sometime till he begins his more advanced work under saddle. So that’s Murphy.

Next dear Tipper; he has filled out quite a bit since I got him and is looking really quite nice, and his new summer coat is a lot better than his one last year so I am pleased with that. I started to do ridden work with him, but then I got ill and bad weather hit so the riding was off, but in the time that I was riding him I got to see some minor hiccups, one he dishes to a degree but dishes worse on one rein, no surprises there, but just after a little work his dishing was noticeably lessened. The other problems are minor and of no importance to this post. So in general Tipper is doing well but has a few kinks to iron out.

And here’s Madeline not the best photo but she was in a no photos mood that day. I was riding Madeline too but like I said I got ill and bad weather hit. The first day I started to ride her she wouldn’t go through the gate to enter the riding area, and then she promptly bucked me off slipping over in doing so, then wiggled back to her feet before proceeding to run around like a loon. After I caught her I re-mounted and we did do some work. After a few days work we made some good progress and I managed to get her stretching which is really important, so I hope it won’t be hard to get her back at the point we left off when I start working her again. So all in all Madeline is well and made a little progress in her work. As for her bucking me off I feel she was completely not to blame and I should have been a better horseman, for one I should have been able to sit the buck and two it was foolish to try ridden work with her in the mood she was in but all lessons learnt and all turned out well.

Now on to little Pip well he is not so little now as he has grown a bit, still short just not as short. Anyways on to how he’s been, Pip has been very well perhaps a little too well as he is still entire, I find this a little annoying but there’s nothing to worry about because he can’t reach Madeline and on top of that he is probably the worlds most incompetent colt he recently tried to mount Niko because Niko was wearing a black rug and Madeline was wearing a orangey brown rug so Pip got a little confused. Luckily for him Niko was surprisingly forgiving and just turned so that Pip fell off, he didn’t kick or bite Pip. So Pip too has been well and is still awaiting gelding.

And saving the best for last Niko, who has some how picked up the nickname Boo-Boo. in my defence I wasn’t the one to first call him it but he does seem to rather like the name so it’s kind of stuck and I call him it frequently now. On a different note I’ve been mixing up what I do with Niko as when I try to do flat work session after flat work session he gets bored and is pretty rubbish to ride, he’s been doing lunge, jumping, and he goes on very little hacks round the orchard, with of course still doing some flat work. So just like the others he is fairly well even if a little on the chubby side.

 Well I think that had better be it from me I’ve already written far more than I intended to. I hope you have all been well and are enjoying nice riding weather.

Saturday 14 April 2012

Time to Ride

Recently we cleared an area of the orchard that had plenty for the horses and ponies to graze so I haven’t had to spend time moving the equines and fence around, which means I get time to ride. Here’s a shot of Niko and I, he has his grumpy face on but he loves it really ;)

Here we are doing some trot I find it very hard to tell if I’ve got Niko in the correct head carriage, as you can see in this photo he is not in correct carriage. If you look you can see his head is ever so slightly below the vertical and his poll is not the highest point. For those of you that are unsure of the correct carriage his head should be on the vertical not below or above and his poll should be the highest point, that said you don’t what to be riding your horse like that all the time, because he should be flexible and also you're likely to cause damage to him if he works in such a high level of head carriage all the time.

Anyways here we are having some fun in the canter Niko really does love to canter and fast too. But check out how nice he looks with his bling, you might also notice he’s grown an ok tail but he does look a mess sadly because he is really starting to moult now. On the bright side he’ll be able to do more work with out getting too hot when he looses his winter coat.

In other news I’ve got a post on War Horse and Pippin that I want to do but that’s all for another day.

Wednesday 11 April 2012

Bling and Other Horsey Stuff

Hello everyone I hope you are all enjoying your April and that you all had a great Easter with plenty of chocolate eggs ;) On a different note look at what Niko has; BLING! Admittedly it is not a great fit but I still really like it, to be honest it’s just a cheap rubbish one compared to some you can get but its still bling.

I have been finding it hard to get time to ride as we are nearly constantly having to clear new ground for the horses to graze, there is so much cutting back of the trees that needs to be done and then it takes quite a while just to set up the portable fencing. It really is a pain in the behind as I want to start riding Madeline more too and see if I can get her to be more accepting of the bit.

In other news we’ve decided that Pippin will get the cut, because realistically we don’t have the money to start breeding horses and on top of that I’ve checked out the market for gypsy vanners and there is very little point in it. So to save little Pip all the frustration of being a stallion but not being allowed to do what a stallion does I feel it best he gets the cut, now we’re just waiting for my father to cough up the money for the gelding operation.

Also I’ve been doing something new with Murphy it is called horse agility. Some of you might know what it is and for those of you that don’t here’s a video of someone doing horse agility but they are seriously good at it unlike me. Murphy and I have only done two jumps both very small but then he is quite a small pony. As it is oh so rewarding to have your trusty equine jump something with out any lead ropes or head collars I even gave it a go with Niko and Pip they both did one jump each with nothing on like lead ropes or any of that stuff and then I called it quits.
Anyways that’s about it from me I have been trying to keep up with all your blogs just not commenting on them, speaking of your blogs I thought this post on Hopeful Jumpers blog about an Exotic Feline Rescue Center was very cool and interesting, I really do love to see big cats, click the link to take a look for yourself Tiger Anesthesia Day.

Saturday 24 March 2012

Bentaiga’s Beautiful Tack

Just a short post today about some truly beautiful tack. Take a look at this saddle, as you can see a lot of work has gone into it’s creation but I think it’s safe to say the work paid off, this is probably the fanciest saddle I’ve ever seen.

And take a look at this double bridle, it too is very fancy even the bit is crafted with beautiful designs on it, and personally I rather like the horse head bust the bridle is displayed on too.

Very small photo I know but I think you can probably get an idea of how nice these stirrup irons are too.

If you liked the tack you saw here why not check it out and lots of other beautiful tack here at the Bentaiga website.

Wednesday 21 March 2012

Niko’s Back in Business

After a very long holiday Niko has finally returned to work, he’s been back in work for a bit now and I’ve mostly just been doing flat work with him but the other day I did jump him a little but more on that in a moment.

Here are a few photos of Niko and I on day two of Niko’s return to work, I was really happy with how well he behaved.

Here you can see I am leaning back too much but I still rather liked the photo, Niko certainly has a lot of energy in his canter work at the moment, perhaps too much.

After a few days of work I took him into the big paddock to do some work and it went very well. But, he did do a very big buck, which I was not expecting in the slightest, so off I went over the front and under the hooves. I am quite bruised now but nothing is broken and I had a lovely ride and popped back on after the trampling and it all went very well.

Also I’ve done a little bit of jumping with him, it started very well and then went down the plug hole so to speak and was absolutely horrible, but we finished on an ok note so I shall be happy with that.

 In other news I’ve got a load of the rings fitted to the stables so I finally have somewhere to tie my horse :)

And everyone is feeling their feet now spring is here.
Anyway that’s all from me now I hope you are all enjoying the nice weather.

Thursday 8 March 2012

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

I recently watched Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, the most recent of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies and I can say it did not fail to please, with a great cast of new characters and of course a few of the old ones it really was good.

While it isn’t a horsey movie it did have a few of our four legged friends in it, with a very exciting chase through the streets of London, after Jack Sparrow.

Here Jack Sparrow was making his escape atop many different carriages, I won’t say anymore so as not to ruin the movie for anyone that may have not yet seen it, but I would say it is well worth watching.

Seeing this movie reminded me of Heath Ryan’s freestyle dressage performance, which was inspired by Pirates of the Caribbean with its music.

2010 Bates Australian Dressage Champs - Heath Ryan wins FEI Hamilton Island Grand Prix Freestyle from Peter Haynes on Vimeo.

Take a look, he is certainly riding a “black pearl” of a horse ;)

Wednesday 7 March 2012

March So Far

I’ve been a little absent on Blogger lately. I hope you’ve all been having a great March so far and that the rider’s that follow my blog have been getting better weather and a chance to enjoy some nice riding. I haven’t begun riding again yet but I hope it will not be long now.

Recently our suppliers of scented shavings ran out of them, but had this Bed Soft blend, so we got it. I was very pleased with just how much there is in a bag and it’s really nice as well with no dust.

We had a little snow storm earlier in the month and a lot of rain while the weather has improved greatly it’s still a bit damp. I put Murphy in his Newmarket fleece for a bit while it was cold but sadly couldn’t get a decent photo, which reminds me I never got to use my Newmarket ride-on rug this winter, oh well I am happy with the better weather.

I also recently did fat scoring on all the horses and ponies. For those of you that don’t know what fat scoring is, this is it in basic: You check your horse/pony over in three different sections the front, the middle, and the rear, you score each with a five point system were zero is emaciated and five is obese, you score each separately because equines just like people carry weight in different places so scoring each section gives you an overall idea of your horses weight.

I am happy to say Murphy, Madeline, and Tipper are just about perfect. Niko is a little on the chubby side, oops. And Pip is a little on the skinny side. Both of them aren’t anything to worry about, just not perfect, Niko will probably soon lose the extra fat when he starts working again and Pip is getting plenty of food so I am putting his weight down to the fact that he is young stock and is prone to growth spurts that generally cause weight loss. Here is a link to a blog with loads of videos about fat scoring.

Also on another note I am very happy because all our equines have been through the winter without even spending seven day’s in all put together. Anyway I think that’s quite enough babbling from me, hope your all having a good March.