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Willow Flats

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KLC That's awesome! A working mini. I love it! 😊

I got a new horse on Sunday. He is a 4 year old silver bay minimal pinto gelding with only a month of driving training but I just could not pass him up after I went to see him.
The trainer vacuumed him all over with a noisy shop vac before hitching. I drove him all around the place and out on the road with traffic. He was so good in the trailer and is settling in really well here. He is smart, curious and chill. Trying to get a decent photo of him, but it is hard to see his face with all his forelock!
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Willow Flats

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Now that Rocko has had a few days to settle in I want to start driving him, but I'd rather someone be around for our first time in a new place for him.
I adjusted Kriss' bridle and harness to fit him, but then just ground drove him. He did really well. Went over the bridge no problem. I wasn't sure how he'd be so I ran the reins through the footman loops so I could control his hind end if needed, but I need not have worried because he seems to have a really good mind. If he got concerned about anything he took a good look then carried on. I was relieved he liked Kriss' bit because it was really pricy. Things are looking up around here!
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Cayuse

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Good idea to have someone on hand for your maiden voyage. He sounds like he's fitting in nicely. How big is he? It's a big help when all your gear fits and you don't have to buy new and wait for it to arrive.
Is he going to be for you to drive?
 

Cayuse

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KLJcowgirl, I like the pictures of May. I use Cappy in the winter to pull the manure tubs to the pile with a sled. He's the only one I have that "earns" his keep :)
 

Willow Flats

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He is 35" but needs to get fit. I cannot feel his ribs! I'm going to drive him today be cause my husband is here and then we can make sure the cart is balanced. My plan is for each horse to be switched around and driven by everyone so they are more well rounded. We all three are working on the halt with Annie so she stops right now, not in a couple of steps. I'm taking what the trainer is having me work on for the week and showing them. Let you know how it goes today!
 

MindySchroder

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I love reading about what you all have been up to! I have been missing in action but have been getting some pony time in... we've mainly been hiking lately as I had a friend visiting and only have the one Hyperbike.

Also we had nearly two weeks of big wind storms followed by thunder, lightning and pouring rain, daily. It made hitching up and driving a bit tricky, but just walking was easy enough to fit in between the storms!

I took the ponies up to the mountains for a little unicorn photo shoot on the 4th. That was a lovely way to spend the holiday!

Zorro is super good about water and water crossings. He will always drink from running water on our drives and hardly hesitates to step right in!

Sky on the other hand has struggled with water all her life. In fact it wasn't until she was 15 that I was even able to get her to go THROUGH water! Let alone drink out of a moving stream. And she only did it then because we had big horses in front of us and behind us on our group drive and she felt she COULDN'T stop. However she has been pretty good about water since then. To be honest I didn't think she would walk in this creek as it was fairly close in this spot with all the trees and moss covered rocks. The creek was moving fairly fast and was ice cold. But she didn't even hesitate, just followed me straight in! Then we waded up the creek a fair distance so I could position her in this beautiful spot. Both ponies looked like the 'real' deal in this gorgeous setting! It's such a beautiful spot that it doesn't even look real!

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Of course I did enhance these so the ponies look like the real deal, kind of glowing! It was a fun day. I'm hoping to be able to drive Zorro today!
 

MajorClementine

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@MindySchroder Where did you get the unicorn horn? I'm looking one for the pony that my nieces ride. I love love your photos. How fun and I love how the horses "glow".

@Willow Flats Rocko is a looker! He's almost the same color as my Wally (albeit a lot cleaner), go figure ;) It seems like he's going to be a great driver for you. Maybe you'll be able to drive him and Annie as a team at some point.
 

MindySchroder

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@MindySchroder, super cute!! It's beautiful country out there!
How did get them to stand still for the pictures with out a lead rope/reins?
I did photo shop the lead rope from my mare, the one with the flowers. She doesn't really listen and is very independent. LOL! But Zorro, my gelding is a professional super model and will stand all day to have his photo taken and be fed treats. So I just unsnapped the long lines and we snapped away! He is wonderful at this and knows that he is to put his ears up and stand pretty!
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@MindySchroder Where did you get the unicorn horn? I'm looking one for the pony that my nieces ride. I love love your photos. How fun and I love how the horses "glow".
I bought these two horns from The Unicorn Maker on Etsy. They are made using a 3D printer and lego plastic so are incredibly lightweight. They are pricey! But I feel totally worth it as they look real 🤗
 

Willow Flats

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Annie is in LOVE with Rocko, which I am happy she likes him so much, because they will be traveling together to playdays and such. She has been acting shamelessly towards him if you get my meaning.

The past two times I drove Annie she was fussy and rushing, especially back to the barn. She is a forward horse but normally easy enough for me to handle without much pressure. I thought it was frustration due to the recent schooling she has been getting.

Today I took Rocko out first and my new trainer/friend was here so she drove him for a little bit after and was really impressed with him.

Next I hitched Annie and she was all go, not listening too well. My friend drove her and she was even worse with her. When I drove her back she was rushing to get back to the barn. I stopped every 10 feet and made her stand. All of this behavior coincides with her new boyfriend Rocko showing up on the scene!

I was hoping my friend and I could start driving them at the same time and switch mid way 2× a week but we decided she is going to have to be driven away from Rocko and the barn until she can behave first, so I'll have to drive them one at a time for now.
If anyone has dealt with this let me know. My friend says she will settle down after a while. I can't believe how nice she is to Rocko. She was horrible to Kriss Kross for the longest time.

Saturday my two new friends are both bringing their minis here so we can all drive together. Finding these new local mini friends has been a real miracle! We'll see how my two do with visitors.
 

MajorClementine

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You can try a mare supplement with her to get her to calm down a little. Red Raspberry leaf and Magnesium are common for "mare-ish" mares. I supplement Clementine because of her mood swings. She worse around other mares but I'm guessing it will help with her behavior in regards to Rocko as well.
 

Willow Flats

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Thanks MC! I have her on raspberry leaf, but will add the magnesium to see if that helps. I've only had one other mare besides Annie and you could never tell when she was in heat.
 

MindySchroder

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The raspberry leaves are meant to add magnesium to their diet, but if they are very low in magnesium I have found they don't do much. The powder is more effective. I feel when they are cycling they tend to be lower in magnesium, though that is only my observation and not scientific in any way.

Also another way to look at this is that she doesn't need to learn to go out with out Rocko but that you can honor her wish of having him join her. It's not a battle for us to win against them, but it can be a time for us to learn to listen and then respond accordingly. If she is feeling lots of angst about leaving him and you keep making her leave him it's very likely that feeling will actually grow and get worse and not get better. Horses really respond to us when we listen to them. Just another way to look at the situation.

My mare Sky was so anxious when I would take Zorro last year. She started to become a danger to herself (and us!) and would race around smashing into fences and gates and falling down on the ground. This started with her whinnying and running around when I would take him out and escalated to her hurting herself. I finally decided I would just take her everywhere with us. So for about 6 months I did that. I have found that now I can take Zorro on a drive or even drive away in the horse trailer and she will whinny but doesn't run around, panic, pace or worry. She just simply goes back to eating. Is this because I honored her worry and allowed her to join us and she found it's easier to stay home? LOL! I don't know exactly and wish I could just simply ask her. But for whatever reason, she is calm now when I take Zorro away.
 

Willow Flats

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That's an interesting thought Mindy and something worth trying! It's so hard to figure out because I took Rocko out first yesterday and she was not the least bit upset. I'm also wondering if she is experiencing physical discomfort with her heat.

I started he on the mag restore too after I read MC's comment so I'm willing to try anything. At least she's not screaming out to the neighboring horses like she did for two days straight last time.
Feel bad for her. Raging hormones are not fun!
 
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Marsha Cassada

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When I first got Midnight she was a little crazy around Dapper Dan. I guess because he was a new guy. She settled down in a couple of weeks. Once in a while she does a "mare thing" around him, but not often. She gets anxious left behind or going without him, but doesn't lose her mind. I usually take her when I drive DD.
 

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