First hack with saddle!

Jane&Ziggy

Jane&Sid these days!
Apr 30, 2010
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Surrey Hills
Having got the All Clear on Monday, we went out early while it was cool for our first little hack with a saddle on.

Sid was a bit anxious and arsy about being girthed but he settled when I assured him I was only going to do it slowly. I'm sure he picked up on my nerves (I did have some nerves). He stepped away from the steps once, but after I repositioned him he was good and we were off up the lane.

The hack was nearly aborted for disobedience when after only 5 minutes we encountered a waste-food recycling bin (one of the little ones) broken open in the road, with the food waste spread everywhere, probably by a fox or badger. Sid insisted that a horse could not possibly walk past that. However, I insisted harder, and he gave in without me even getting off and leading him. After that there was no more funny business.

We met a friend on the lane and stopped for a chat, and he is just the loveliest horse to do that from - tilts one hoof, stands perfectly still, and dozes until I've finished. We had a few trots up the hills on the lane and he was responsive and smart, he has a lovely horse trot not at all like Ziggy's little sewing machine! Once we got on to the Heath and the sand tracks I was bold enough to have a little canter up one of the short slopy canter tracks, and he was very happy to go. His canter is big and swingy, very comfortable, and although he was quite geed up he slowed when I asked and walked when I asked and stopped when I asked. So refreshing!

Another chat with a dog walker on the way back, and again he was so laid back he was practically horizontal. Afterwards he wanted to walk slowly, which usually means his feet are starting to bother him, so as we were only 10 minutes from home I slipped off and led him the rest of the way. He was super good down the lane, stopping in all the lay boys to let the rush hour cars past.

Gosh he is great. I can't get over the way that he slows down and stops whenever I ask, even on the way home! Poor little Ziggy never entirely got over the instinct to rush for home. Sid takes longer to look after, because he is very sensitive so I have to be sure there is nothing on his saddle patch or girth groove that might bother him, and afterwards I have to wash him off and reapply his fly cream and do all his feet and feathers etc, but he is definitely worth the effort.

The trimmer is coming in a couple of weeks so he will let me know if we'd be ok to go out for longer periods. I don't want to overdo it on newly barefoot feet!

*biggrin*
 
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