Monday, March 18, 2013

A Curvy Girl Enters the Arena...

So, if you hadn't noticed, Pandora is small. Very small. Like, 13.3h small. And Blake is big. Like, over 200lbs big. And yes, the most well known cutting horse and sire of all time (Smart Little Lena) was only 13.3h, we didn't feel like Blake would be comfortable putting that kind of stresses on his little lady's joints.

September 2011, Blake's great grandma (or just grammy as we know her) mentioned to us that her niece, who had just passed away unexpectedly, had a wonderful paint horse looking for a home. We were told she had been everywhere and had done everything, specifically all ranch duties. We were also told that she was 17h, and solid. Yep, that should fit Blake. We arranged to go check out this new mare, and possibly bring her home.

Mid October, we all drove out to Homedale, Idaho. Blake's great uncle Bob, now in the saddle making history books with the work he did next to Ray Holes, had arranged for the meeting at his house. There wasn't much room to ride, but the big girl showed up and was led out of the trailer.

Well, she wasn't 17h. I don't think even makes the 16 mark, but pretty close. But HOLY MOSES, the girl had curves and bone. She naturally stood like she was set up for a halter class. She could definitely carry Blaker. We both also noted that it was kind of strange how he led her out with the lead rope wrapped around the back of her poll and through the bottom of the halter. We saddled her up, and Blake hopped on and walked her around. He just rode her around in a bosalito. And she was awesome. I hopped on too, and automatically liked her, even though I could barely walk and trot her around. We talked over some stuff and called it a deal. But until after we drooled over the handmade rawhide beauties and leather work that decorated his workshop.

It was time to go, and our new girl Lucy was a little hesitant to enter the tiny cave of our two horse trailer. But after a little coaxing, she got right in. Once we got home, she had a hard time backing out, and it was obvious she had never been backed out of a trailer before. We finally had to call Eugene to the rescue, and the scary red man came over and scared her right out of it. Damnit Eugene. Blake and I both noticed that she was really weird about her head though, and was easily flustered around her poll. We could fix that though.

The next day, we lunged her, and she picked up on it perfectly. What a smart ranch horse! And a nice, smooth trot to boot. But, it became really obvious that she had never loped around much before. She had no idea where to put her legs or how to use herself. But, I had never seen a horse learn so fast. I was excited about the new girl, and Blake was too.

Monday, March 11, 2013

The One Where Pandora Becomes a "Big Girl"

Year three for Pandora proved to be rough for her. Maybe more so for me. But it included her having to actually haul me around for a bit. And learning how to accept the bit. And how to steer and stop and make some transitions. But you know what? She did pretty well considering.

This was the first horse I had started so I was a bit concerned. But Blake had saddled her a lot and done a lot with her on the ground, so she was pretty OK with me being on her.

We didn't do too much. I didn't want to put much strain on her little legs, so most of our sessions were about 20 minutes long. I am really hoping this year we can get started on more, and actually throw in some reining crap. She is already listening to my seat, so I know this girl has a sliding stop in there somewhere. She is quite difficult to train because she thinks she already knows what we are doing once we get started. So, that makes it very hard to progress when the little fart thinks she already knows how to do the rollback because she already did it once.

I think I forgot to mention that Pandora is also a mastermind at escaping. She knows how to open gates, with or without chains, and busted through the wooden fence before. Luckily, she never runs and is easily captured. The neighbor found her down the road at 4am once, and put his arm around her and walked her back home. The time she busted through the fence, I went home sick from work luckily and pulled up to the little roan horse running in the road. She recognized my truck and followed me down the driveway. I wrapped my sweatshirt around her and led her into the arena.

She has probably released herself from her "prison" about 10 times now. A few times she ate herself a whole bale of straight alfalfa. Them smart horses sure are hard to figure out...
Angry cowhorse face!
Whoa Pandy-Lou!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

I'm a Cowhorse of Course!

Who's in the house? Pandora!

Sooo remember when I said that the evil lady we purchased Pandora from said she would send out Pandora's info to get her papers that week? Yeah. Didn't happen. Didn't happen for MONTHS. Actually, it didn't happen for about a year. For those of you who don't know, as the age of the horse increases, so does the registration fee. It was closing in on the increased fee date, and this lady decided to stop responding to our emails and calls about the papers being sent. I really wanted to hurt her. And Blake. Well, Blake doesn't handle people very well, especially rude lazy people. So he left the lady a nasty email giving her one more shot before he went back to her house in Payette to deal with her face to face.
Spring roan!
She didn't like that one bit. She told him that he was not never speak to her like that again or she would never get the papers sent.

Can I help you?
Needless to say, Blake was about ready to burn her house down for the rest of the comments she put in the email. I calmed him down, and wrote her an email back. I told her we would provide every other detail, I would mail her the papers, and all she would have to do is sign the damn things and send them back. I'd even give her the envelope and stamps to send them back. No response. Took a shot in the dark and sent the paperwork. And after a year of excuses from this lady, she finally took the 5 seconds to sign the damn papers.

Enter: Lil Badbadger. That had to be the perfect name for this horse. Because if you could see this thing rollback, and cut on a lunge line, and try to cut the dogs, you would understand. She is little. She is bad. And has the temperament of a badger for sure. But she sure does love her daddy.

We didn't do too much her 2 year old year. She came to a couple of shows, and participated in one. She did pretty well again! We also started saddling her up, and at the end of her 2 year old year, we were
sitting on her. The first time I got up on the saddle, we side passed all over the arena. That was about all she wanted to do, so I went with it.
On a lunge, she would go forward pretty well. But we ended the year pretty happy with her.