It figures, just when I'm all prepared to go just have a nice standing session with Gabe (ha!), it rains like mad. There is mud and puddles EVERYWHERE! It's gorgeous out, sunny, a bit chilly, and very muddy.
What I wouldn't give for a nice, all-weather outdoor arena. I don't even need an indoor, I'll ride in just about any weather, but I won't ride in the slimy, slippery, deep mud we get around here. *Sigh* There is so much I want to get done on my farm, not enough in the farm funds to get 'em done any time soon.
The ponies got their feetsies done Saturday. Calypso has shoes again, she is the only one who gets shoes at the moment and she is SO much happier walking on iron than she is barefoot. I'd keep her shod all the time if I didn't think she'd slip and fall on the ice during the winter.
Gabe was apparently a complete ass for the farrier. I was absolutely mortified when I found out how bad he had been. Mortified. Kind of like when your kids do or say really bad things and you are MORTIFIED that you raised them! Same with Gabe.
Saturday was a busy day: the farrier was scheduled and the hay shed needed replenishing. My appointment with the hay guy overlapped the appointment with the farrier. Of course, when I asked hubby what he wanted to do, he chose to stay home and hold horses for the farrier. I got to go pick up hay. Yay me! Every time he has stayed home to hold horses for the farrier Gabe is a jerk for him. The last time he held him Gabe bit him and bit him hard enough to leave marks. This time, he wouldn't stand still and behaved like an unbroke baby.
Every time I hold Gabe for the farrier he behaves very nicely and stands still, but I expect him to and I absolutely require him to. My husband, bless his heart, knows just enough about horse handling to handle the well-broke ones with ease. The ones that like to test you, like Gabe, he is at a loss about how to make them behave. I don't know if he's afraid to make him behave or just doesn't know HOW to make him behave. I guess that's something I need to work on with Robert and probably with Gabe, too. He should be able to handle Gabe without any issues at all because he really isn't that difficult....if you know what you're doing.
Gabe likes to test you and if you don't pass his tests, he keeps pushing and getting brattier and brattier. He's one of those, who, if in a boarding situation, would develop a reputation for being a bad horse. Not necessarily because he's bad or entirely mannerless, but because he tests and pushes the limits if you don't push back and remind him who's in control. Usually all he needs is one good smack on the shoulder, a sharp, loud "NO!" or a quick trip walking backwards across the pasture on the end of the halter. He is always contrite after punishment and straightens the heck up.
I am the "boss mare," he respects me because I take NO crap from him. None. He's not even allowed to look at me funny and he is definitely not allowed to get mouthy or be wiggly. At all. Ever. He knows I'll "bite and kick" if he gets out of line. (I don't literally bite or kick him, you know what I mean!)
Robert is merely a play toy to the big guy because he has figured out that Robert won't push back and make him behave like he should. *sigh*
On the bright side: My pastures are a gorgeous emerald green. The rain has really pushed everything into overdrive on the growth front. Yay!