Thursday, September 8, 2016

A little Less Magic - A little More Dust

The beautiful thing about an actual trial period, is that it gives both you and your new partner a chance to settle in to each other.  The first few days were magical.  We were both on our best behavior and neither one was asking much of the other.  Much like the early days of dating.

"Do you want Thai food or steak?"

"Oh, either.  I'm just happy to spend time with you."

"Do you want to watch Harry Potter for the umpteenth billion time?"  (this, by the way, is me.  I don't know why but I've watched the first three HP movies a ridiculous amount)

"Oh, sure."

Fast forward to a few dates down the line....

"Do you want Thai food or steak?"

"Actually, I want Italian food.  In my pajamas.  Pizza.  I want pizza.  I don't need to shower do I?"

"Do you want to watch Harry Potter for the umpteenth billion time?"


So, the pony and I have been politely asking questions.  Until three days ago when he decided to bring out his inner Jersey Shore personality.

"Yo, yo.  There's food over there. I don't care that it's an empty grain pan OUTSIDE my turnout, I need to get there now.  Get outta my way lady!  Seriously, lady, get outta my way!"

As I had already taken his halter almost all the way off and had mistakenly thought that we were 'together', he was free to rear up, spin around and run to the corner where he could lovingly stare at the grain pan.

Then yesterday we were out for a ride.  I thought we should take a left.  He thought the direction of his stall sounded better.  There was some circling and backing and even a mini tantrum involving front feet leaving the ground for a moment.  Basically, the problem was that he was trying mansplain to me which direction we should go and I was trying to gently and kindly explain that I didn't need a man to give me directions.  Yeah, like that ever works.  So - now that we've realized that - I've stopped trying to treat him like Enzo and started to deal with the horse I have.  The stubborn "I want to be in charge" horse.  I've added "Yo, Vinnie.  Knock it off!" to my vocabulary.

Though this may seem like bad news, it's actually great.  I wanted to see what the real pony was like, not pony on his best behavior.  Now that I know what I'm dealing with, I can create better boundaries for him.  And though my long term goal is to get to a place of passive leadership with him, I need to create safety for both of us first and that may require more of a dominant attitude for a while.

Vet came out today and did his teeth (he had sharp points and mouth ulcers..poor kid) and so he's going to rest from that for a day or two.  He was also back sore, but that may be from being ridden in a frame without using his body properly.  He holds his ribcage *perfectly still*.  My acupuncture/chirporactor is coming out Monday to take a look.  Otherwise, he now has a super clean sheath (yeah for sedation!) and a clean set of hock x-rays.

I have a few more weeks and plan on putting him in some serious work to see how we gel.

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