Saturday, December 12, 2009

Guess What Tika Did?


The temps have begun to rise. It was nearly almost not freezing yesterday! That was good news, because I left my hose outside in the cold and it was frozen. And while the water tubs had a good, solid layer of ice on top, the mustangs are ice munching maniacs and managed to chew and lick their way down to the water below.

If you were here yesterday, you may have noticed the photo of Tika. Did you see what she was wearing? Darling's English saddle! I know...didn't I just say I was going to wait until she stopped dancing around? Well, I figured the hunt saddle was less intrusive than the Western saddle pad, so opted to haul it out there with me on Thursday. She really didn't put up much of a fuss, and she's not at all concerned about things tightening up around her belly. Naturally, I've already had my long, trusty rope around her and pulled tight, just to see how she would react.

Tika's biggest issue is me being down there beneath her. Still makes her kind of nervous. It took a couple of reaches for the girth, but I managed to get it and once it was pulled up around her middle, she simply stood there. Some horses make me nervous when I saddle them up the first time. What if they blow before the saddle is secure, and it slips underneath their belly in the middle of a bucking frenzy? No such problem with this girl, and I hadn't anticipated there would be.

So Tika's worn a saddle. Then yesterday I thought I'd bring out an old sheet to see how she reacted to that. Again, something big and floppy going over her back was not on her hit parade of things to do on a Friday afternoon. I didn't think she'd have any problem with me slipping it over her head (I never unbuckle the you?), but I didn't want her to suddenly lose it when the blanket hit her back on both sides. So I unfastened the front, rubbed it on her face, neck, and down across her shoulder before sliding it over her body. She thought it a bit odd, but didn't panic.

This sheet is old. No back leg straps and even one of the belly straps had been ripped off at some point. But she wasn't bothered by on her body, so I fastened the one belly strap (and yes, the chest was secure at this point as well), got her a little bit of grain and left her happily munching. When I returned an hour later, the blanket had been pulled up around her girth area and was dragging on her right side.

Hmmm...desenstizing without the hard labor. I don't know if she was worried about it hanging down there or not when it first happened. She didn't appear to care one way or the other when I got there. I unbuckled the belly strap and pulled it off over her head. Enough training for the day. Neither Steve Holt! nor Sandy would have allowed that, even a month into training. Heck, it's all Sandy can do to tolerate things going over his head still!


Isn't she cute?

Now, there's a little matter of a prize for the book, Shadow Horse. I'd asked earlier in the week for what you'd be willing to do, or what you wanted someone else to do, in order to get a copy. Kathy M posted a story of her being wedged into the bars of a round pen panel. That's an image that has left me giggling the past few Kathy? You win, girl!


Pony Girl said...

Tika is SO beautiful! I am glad to hear she wore the saddle and blanket with such ease.
Glad to hear it warmed up a they are saying a chance of snow for you tomorrow and Monday. But rain is on it's way back.....hate to say it, I'll be kind of glad to see it, LOL!
Congrats to Kathy on winning the book, I know she'll enjoy it!

Becky said...

That little girl has one of the prettiest eyes I've ever seen on a horse. They're almost My-Little-Pony in size (remember those tiny little plastic had with GREAT big eyes?) She's lovely :)

Dusty Devoe said...

I agree with Pony Girl. She is BEAUTIFUL!

Tracey said...

Thank you, ladies. I always said the next horse I got was going to be a cremello, because I wanted a blue eyed horse I could photograph. But Tika is just so photogenic! Her eyes are nothing short of incredible. Kind of wonder if her baby is still down there at the corrals, and what it may look like.

Shirley said...

She is coming along well; that big soft eye does tell alot about her personality. I like working with mares.