The most frustrating part of owning a non amateur friendly horse, are the days where you just can’t get out to ride it and then you come back to a dragon. It’s hell. With Dandy, even with him being in full training (so technically not sitting in a pasture, getting worked, all that jazz) I couldn’t take a single day off without having to deal with issues and temper tantrums. It was one of those temper tantrums resulting from me not riding for a few days that ended up being the final straw in me keeping Dandy.
With Gus, I had no idea what was going to happen. He ended up having almost two weeks off after his show due to getting bit on the back by his bff and then my own vacation plans. And during that time, I received a video of GusGus having a grand old time in his pasture.
So I didn’t make any real plans for my first day back out to the barn. I said “If he’s good we’ll do a bit of work and then a trail. If he’s bad, we will just hack, hack, hack.”
I was shocked that not only did Gus get right to work, he was actually better than he had been at the show. It took me a few minutes to remember that I had switched to a single link baucher and that probably had something to do with his willingness to seek contact. However, it cannot be overstated that even after almost two weeks of just hanging, with heavy machinery working just behind the trees, and with not really that much harsher of a bit (just different), Gus was still good. Perfect even.
This is an amateur horse.
It felt so good. I was so happy. We did some trot work (including going over the fun contraption in the picture below), some canter work, and then went on a trail. And even on the trail Gus was an angel. Calm and confident like he never has before. Not that he’s ever been bad on a trail but this was a different attitude. The break was good for him.
But mostly, I am just so happy that I have a horse that I can leave for a while and come back to with a good attitude. I don’t have to worry about spending days getting back on track. It is the best feeling.
Which is a good thing because now I am giving him another week off! This was unplanned but I went to a wedding over the weekend in my hometown and decided to stay and do some wedding planning of my own.