Friday, February 17, 2012

Sometimes, savvy means knowing when to quit

This week I made the decision that the horse I've been working with for some time now, with interruptions due to weather and life, just is not going to be the solid, uncomplicated trail horse I want. He has made progress from when I got him, has made many good changes, but I have been trying to put the square peg in the round hole and putting too much pressure on both of us. To get to what I want would take much time, time without all the gaps that happen with me. He needs much more consistent time then I can do. And a more skilled, knowledgeable, better riding person would help too. As my instructor said "with someone else who can give him consistent time, he would eventually come through, but probably would still not be quite what you want." She also said that a horse with his temperament & personality can just be exhausting because you never know what horse will be greeting you that day or even moment to moment.

Decision made. And I have been amazed at just how much stress I had. I am looking at him differently now, seeing all the good things about him that make him fun. He has so much personality and is so very interactive that it used to be fun to be with him. Now, I can get back to that. I can just ride and train and enjoy him. I can be happy with the progress he has made-- such as discovering he has a hind end and what he can do with it; starting to think about a puzzle instead of just rushing into it; trotting over ground poles without losing his mind; stopping on my breath & energy; turning off a light aid; and all the other accomplishments he now has. I can go at his speed, which is to go slow with lots of repetition and time to think it over without feeling like I am never going to get him out on the trail with any reliability.

And right after I made my decision, I found out about a Lippitt Morgan gelding for sale only 10 miles away from me. I am going to go look Saturday. And if he is not the right one, I'll keep looking.


Becky said...

What happened with the Morgan you went to see?

CurtsBooks said...

Sorry I took so long to answer. I am not real good about checking my comments.
He was a real nice one. A full Lippitt gelding related to the ones I had.
But--he did not have the training claimed in the ad, a whole lot less in fact. And his owner let him get away w/shit on the ground. He just pulled her around doing what he wanted. At one point, since just dragging her about was boring, he got her behind him, bucked & then kicked. He kicked upwards but I saw the soles of both hind feet. He could have nailed her good. She did nothing & he is thinking "I got away w/flipping you off, so just wait until you see what I do NEXT!"
Not only would I have to do full riding training, but remedial training. There was nothing there I could not do, but I have horses to train. I want one I can bring home & go ride.
He also had an enlarged knee that I would have had to have a vet check out; did not look good although it did not seem to affect him. But would it hold up to miles of riding?
So I had to walk away.