Wild Horse Goes Walk-Trot, Alabama Fun Show #3 2018, Heathermoor Farm

Photos by Bryan Pope, @thebryonpope

ASHAA Fun Show
Saturday, September 8, 2018
[Show Report]

Strollin’ along.

Could he be more pleasant?

Winning never gets old.

Obligatory ribbon shot. Milton fails to see the point.

Milton rides totally different than he looks. Even I have to admit that in photos Milton seems a joy and a delight. There is no trace of the horse who is counter-bent, staring with alarm at the world outside of the ring, uninterested in contact, and equiped with green horse point-and-shoot steering.

Whoa there, wild horse.

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

9 thoughts on “Wild Horse Goes Walk-Trot, Alabama Fun Show #3 2018, Heathermoor Farm

  1. Beautiful shots & glad you had fun! Milton looks like the picture postcard hunter! How are those cute kittens doing?

  2. “Milton rides totally different than he looks. Even I have to admit that in photos Milton seems a joy and a delight. There is no trace of the horse who is counter-bent, staring with alarm at the world outside of the ring, uninterested in contact, and equipped with green horse point-and-shoot steering.”

    I’m riding a recently gelded, six year-old green boy and this certainly describes him! His barn personality is Ferdinand the Bull. Everybody loves him and he gives snuggles and hugs as good as he gets. But he rides different than he looks. The point and shoot steering and sticky feet show up a lot, but then he walks right through a pretty big stream and I’m totally impressed. He keeps me on my toes! Super nice to see you riding your boy. Keep up the good work!

  3. “… sticky feet …”
    I love this. Suitable to so many occasions: riding, jumping, loading, generalized don’t wanna ….

    Kittens remain adorable. Cats remain dubious.

    Milton the hunter … noooooooooo!

  4. He has the WORST case of, you-saddled-me-up-so-now-I-can’t-MOOOVE …. ever. We try going left. We try going right. We try backing up. There’s really only so much room in the barn isle to play this game. It’s kind of become a joke. And since he’s proven that he can suddenly implode if pushed too much, I’m trying to keep my sense of humor and my patience. But sometimes I just want to put him on a slow boat to China … as if I could ever get him up the ramp … pfffft.

  5. I’m sure you’ve thought of tempting him forward with treats, checked his saddle etc. Are you in a position to sit up there with a book/phone & wait him out? Keep us posted.

    1. Yes, treats. Have to be super careful with that as he can get a little pushy. And he’s learned how to give jusssst enough to get the treat, but not an inch more. (Smart, and a little lazy.) Saddle fit was checked and re-checked. I finally caved and removed the rear cinch just to give him the benefit of the doubt. (He’s been ridden/broke with a rear cinch. Removal didn’t help.) He’s been vet checked for pain, spinal issues, etc and is fine. It’s not so much the standing still that’s the issue, it’s that when he finally does start to move, he gets weird. Scoochy. Hoppy, as in a “pre-buck” kind of way. Like something isn’t right. It was suggested that he might be cold-backed. Never had a horse like that before, but I guess it helps to ground work them a bit first, then saddle, then ground work some more, then mount. I’ve had moderate, albeit inconsistent improvement with that. He has some other oddities. Like, when free longed and asked to up the pace, he kicks AT me. Feisty? I dunno, but I don’t like it one bit. I’ve had all kinds of responses, confusion and high octane energy with other horses, but this is a totally new one for me. I’ve been trying to find his “sweet spot” with the asking and I’m starting to make some gains there. (Less is more, but he’s kind of lazy, so it’s complicated) Basically, he doesn’t like to feel pressured and his response to pressure is to push back … sometimes really rudely. (Shall I mention that he was only just gelded in Dec?) So … do I stop and back things up? Go slower? Push back he realizes it’s his job to do what’s asked? For normal ground work things like working on leading, backing, turns on the forehand and haunches, he’s pretty clueless and green, but he really wants to please and gives a lot of try once he knows what I’m asking. I’m seeing good progress there. Sometimes even feel a little bonding going on. In the barn he’s just as sweet, gentle and calm as can be. No quirks there at all. But longing or free longing if you push him to move, even gently, and he can get offended. He won’t give you his eye and he cops what I can only describe as a “make me” attitude. And he will push back if you push on him too much. The sticky feet when saddled … very odd. Once we get going he’s typically very good and willing. I’ve put a lot of trail miles on him this summer and been very impressed with his try. He’s been exposed to many new things and has taken almost all of in stride. I’ve asked several to weigh in on our conundrum and the barn manager/trainer who either rides with me almost daily or is around when I ride is a bit perplexed too. Ulcers? I dunno. Lyme? Maybe? I’m not sure if I’m ready to go down those roads yet. (Does it ever end? IMO, no) The vet comes Thursday for fall shots. Clearly, we’re going to have a long conversation.

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