Friday, October 26, 2012

Real 1 Month Photos!

Wow! Just Wow! What a difference good feed, good hay and structured turnout can do!

This mare has totally blown my mind in the past couple days. She is now letting me pick up all 4 feet with NO PROBLEMS at all. No tugging, no pulling, no flying backwards. She stands super quiet on the cross ties and lets my 3 year old daughter, with supervision, lead her around the barn. She has not offered to kick or be nasty in the last 2 weeks. Her temperament is wonderful. Very quiet, very in your pocket, very loving.

I am going to try to find my circingle that is somewhere in Mom's barn...wish me luck on finding it! I need to start building up her back muscle before I put anyone on her. I am really hoping to get some good training on her and get her on the market in the spring. Gwen has asked to ride her...we shall see how she does with some training. If I still have her by show season next year, maybe Gwen can take her in lead line!!!

One last set of pictures for you to compare.... These two pictures really brought it home to me!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Poor Little Tia's Butt!

Sigh. Well, I was supposed to take brand new, wonderful, full month pictures of Tia tonight, as well as ride the Mocha Man... that didn't happen.

I got to the barn a little before it got completely dark to feed. The girls are all out in the ring while the area around the new pond is being seeded. So, I go in and put feed in everyone's room, lock up the goaties in their room and head down to get the girls.

Ber first, Mia second, Tia last. No issues. I bring Tia in her room and leave her halter on because I want to take pictures of her after she finished her dinner. I give her a pat on her expanding neck (yay!) and turn to leave...but wait...blood? Sigh. I go to investigate...again...sigh.

I leave her to eat and then decide when she is about 1/2 done that I can't handle it anymore and bring her out to inspect her thoroughly. This is what I found...

The above pictures are after I cleaned and put meds on her cuts. I'm honestly not sure what the devil happened. She has a few cuts and scrapes on her legs as well. I'm torn between thinking that maybe she got cast while out in the ring, or maybe she messed with one of the girls and they told her about herself. Either way, she is a horse, they do this kind of thing all the time. We may never know what exactly happened. I am not upset with anyone, human or horse. It happens!

That being said, her and I had a discussion while doing my inspection. I really needed to look at her back leg. Yep, the same back leg she has given me issues with before. The dreaded back right leg. Every time I went to touch it she would pick her foot up real fast and swing her hing end towards me. Nope! We aren't playing this game. Swat! Again..Swat! This time she swished her little painted tail and cocked her foot at me. That got her not only swatted but growled at..which ended with licking and chewing (for non-horsey people that means "sorry Mom") and me running my hand up and down her leg.

In the end, all of her cuts got antibiotic ointment as well as as a good spritz from a cut and wound spray. There doesn't seem to be any major cuts..the one on her hip had me concerned until I got a good look at it, but all in all she is ok and was very good for me while I poked and prodded her.

I did get a few shots of her on cross ties to see how much weight she has put on. They aren't great, but you can def see a difference in her. I am transitioning her to only be on the LS feed for a while. Every time I see her, I see a difference in her. I am also seeing lots and lots more of her personality. She is def an alpha mare but she is becoming very aware that when I am around, I am alpha mare! Ha!

That being said, here are a few photos of Miss Tia. I will try to get real photos sometime this week. As you can see by the below pictures..Tia was super excited about the photo opp!

Very little U neck left!!!!!

Really filling in through her belly!

Pawing! Mom let me go finish dinner!

(How do I make the sound of someone sticking their tongue out at me???? lol)

Really filling in in her butt! And look at that hind end! 

 Have a good evening!!!!!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Part Of The Herd!

Tia has been really coming along! Thursday, when we had our session, she showed me just how horrible some of this Parreli training can be. The crack of a whip was basically her signal to stop and stare at me. So, the retraining began. By the end of our session, she was going nicely on voice commands at a walk/jog and whoa. I am going to have to get my lunge line from my Mom's place that has the chain on it tho. She pulls...a lot! And, when she decides she is done, she will turn away from you and leave...quickly. My shoulder cant handle that. But, we ended on a super great note. No more putting her butt towards me! I could walk right up behind her with no threat of kicking, she just stepped to the side so that I wasn't directly behind her. Considering before, when you walked up behind her she would bunch her little tail and threaten to kick, I believe this is a sign of improvement.

Friday, I was just feeling to terrible to work with her. Saturday was incredibly hectic...believe me when I say I am paying for it today! I hate being sick.

Sunday morning at 8am I met Becca at the barn to introduce Tia to the herd. We walked Tia and Mia to the riding ring together  The guy was there to work on the pond, so we decided the safest place for them to be was in the ring. This is what we got between Tia and Mia.

So, with absolutely NO squealing, kicking, running, racing, chasing or generally asinine behavior, we gave Tia and Mia about 10 minutes to themselves before bringing Ber down. And this is what we got when we put Ber out...

Again, no kicking, no squealing, no chasing..nothing. It was pretty uneventful....which made me very happy. It makes my heart happy to see Tia out with the other girls. I am hoping all stays calm, so far so good.

I am headed to the drs in a few minutes. No feeding for me tonight. I feel like poop!

I hope everyone has a great Monday.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Little Miss Independent!

I got a text yesterday morning from one of the girls who is helping with feeding Tia during the day. At first, the texts were good news! She had let the other two mares out into the big field, which caused Tia to have a conniption fit! Bucking, running  throwing her head, screaming her head off! All good signs that her energy level is back up and she is ready to go out with the herd. We made plans to let her out with the big girls on Sunday morning. End of good texts.

Got a text a little later. Tia felt it necessary to try to take Nikki's head off. She went in to feed her, she turned tail and came right at her, squealing the entire time. This ... pissed... me ... off! I don't care if someone has apples tied to their pants, I don't care if someone is poking you with a stick, I don't care if someone is actually pulling your tail... I have two MAIN rules. No KICKING and No BITING.

Now, I get it. She wanted to eat...again. I don't care. Kicking is unacceptable and dangerous. I almost told Nikki to throw her out with the girls and not give her lunch. She would learn real quick that kicking only gets you kicked at back. But, Nikki did the right thing. She chased the hell out of her until she showed submission. Exactly what I would have done. Only then did she get to eat. (Lunch time feedings stop on Saturday by the way) Luckily, Nikki wasn't hurt. She just grazed her thigh. My thoughts for the rest of the day revolved around killing the pony and just how many ways I could accomplish such a thing.

So, the decision was made, after I decided killing the pony would be counter-productive, to put her into book camp a bit early. So, last night Gwen and I headed to the barn to feed. Gabs met us over there. She wanted to watch the first session. I was able to get her to take pictures and video. (Waiting on pics from Gabs)

After the first few minutes of lunging, I can see why the previous owner was a bit scared or apprehensive of the mare. She is definitly more of an alpha mare. She will test everything you do when you ask her to do something. She starts off sweet and innocent and then BAM - witch mode. Its ok tho. I enjoy working with horses that give me a challenge. My first show mare, Majic, was the exact same way. I still remember, in vivid detail, the day I chased her tail around the pasture with a pitch fork because she felt the need to kick at me while I was cleaning the fields...every time I cleaned the fields. Tia reminds me of Majic in a lot of ways.

So, we lunged...and lunged....and lunged some more. When she finally figured out that I wasnt about to back down on what I wanted her to do and that it would be much easier to just follow my instruction, we had a great session. Im pretty sure we both got a good workout!

I did notice that she was off here and there, but it wasnt consistant. I am hoping it was just the ground being a bit hard and uneven. We will have another session tonight as well as tomorrow. I should have the good camera with me tomorrow so I can get some better video. My phone takes crappy video and pics sometimes.

Here are a few photos from our session. Hoping to get the pics from Gabs as well sometime today.

Thursday, October 11, 2012


I will keep this one short and sweet as I really don't have anything to report..other than....

Tia's Coggins came back NEGATIVE!!!!!! Yay! I wasn't to worried about it, but it is definitely nice to know for sure!

She will go on twice a day feedings this Sunday. I am hoping to also be able to put her out with the girls very soon. The barn I am at is in the process of putting in a pond, so I don't want to turn everyone out together just yet for fear of someone falling into the big hole in the pasture if chasing commences!

I really cant wait for her to be out with the other horses. I think I may be more excited about this than she is!

I hope everyone has a great day!

Monday, October 8, 2012


I have noticed more and more that sweet little Tia has had more and more energy each evening. I have gotten reports of her pushing people around on lead line and pushing on the gate when she feels she should be fed.

Now, I understand wanting to come in and eat. I get it. I like food too. But I refuse to let her push people around and be disrespectful. Skinny or not, she will understand that I am alpha and that she will respect my space as well as everyone elses. I have made it very clear to Roo and Gabs that regardless of her past, she is with us now and she needs to know that respect is a huge issue. I will not be putting a chain on this mare. I don't think she needs it and I am pretty sure that even if I put one on her she would just run away backwards in fear. All it really takes with her is a swift growl and a good pop on the lead rope and she is right as rain.

This evening, after I brought everyone else is, I looked out to see Tia...trotting around like a maniac. My first thought..Yay I can get video! Then she started pushing on the gate...My second thought..Damn. Its gonna be a slight training session.

So, down to the riding ring I went, camera in tow. Went to untie the gate, she is steady pushing on it. I growled at her, she backed off. I untie the gate, walk in, retie the gate and go to put her halter on. She takes the opp to swing her head away from me, which earned her a growl "Mare!". She brought her head back and let me halter her. Un-clip lead rope...walk away...very confused mare. I turn and ask her to move away from me and walk on. She moved away alright. Right to the gate...with her butt to me. That's a huge no no.

So I asked her to move on, swung the lead around a little, no response. Swung faster and harder - got twitchy ears. Gave her a slight pop on the butt - And Here Is Our Kicker Ladies and Gentleman! Now, before I go any further, she is what I call a "But I" kicker. It lasts just as long as you can say "But I" and nothing really happens. It was more of a bunny hop threat then a kick really, but anytime a horse evens threatens something like that, its Boot Camp time!

I'm pretty sure the neighbors thought WWIII was happening. There was a lot of Cut It Outs and Huts and Ha's going on in a rather loud grouchy tone. She only offered to do it again about 10 seconds later when I tried to push her forward again. More grouchy tone and she decided to just behave.

The more I worked with her, the more I realized that this mare is super green. I'm talking maybe a 3 year old training level. Like, pulled her out of the field at 2, broke her, rode her for a few months and that was it. Which honestly adds up to her story which was she was broke at 2, they rode her for a year, bred her, let her sit, tried to ride her, she became grumpy, they shipped her to the feed lot. This mare needs time. That I can give her.

She is a super cute mover. The video below is of tonight. All I had pushing her on was my voice and a lead rope. I apparently didn't upset her to badly..after "chasing" her around the ring she stopped and came right back to me just as happy as could be. This Saturday  she will start boot camp, which for her will be a watered down version of my normal boot camp, but she will still get worked. I am restarting her from the ground. Hopefully, when I am done with her, she will be good as gold!

Friday, October 5, 2012

3 Weeks

Yesterday, was three weeks since Tia came into our lives. I say "our" because it isn't just me taking care of her. My husband, my daughter, my Mom, Becca, Gabs, Emily and Nikki are all a huge part of this whole undertaking. There is no way I would be able to do this without any of them!

I do think she has gained some weight, but I haven't had a chance to tape her. Her worming is all done. Panacur every night since Monday. She did very well. By Wed night I started having to put her butt up against a wall to keep her from walking backwards. She is much more tolerant of a spray bottle. Tonight I showed no pity and sprayed her everywhere, not just on her mane, with Healthy Hair Care. At first she was not to happy with me. Just a bit antsy and giving me the "Mom...Come On!!" look. I picked up 3 of her 4 feet. She has some swelling in the back right leg. I couldn't get a good look at it to see what it was, but there was no heat in the leg or the hoof. She let me touch her hoof and leg but she just didn't want me picking it up. I have asked Becca to call me in the morning if she is still swollen.

I did get to take some 3 week photos. Gabs came out and hung out with me at the barn and helped take photos. I have put them together in a collage type setting to put them side by side. I can see a bit of weight from behind and her topline is starting to fill in. I know better than to put to much weight on her to fast, but a huge part of me just cant wait to not see bones when I see her!

She is super talkative and loves any and all attention. I am starting to have to really correct her on some things. Patience is apparently not a virtue to her! She feels that she should just be able to push her way through a gate, or you, to go about her way. On one hand, I am super excited that she actually has the energy and want to do something more then mope, on the other hand, I know that if I don't correct it now, it will only get worse. So I make her wait, I make her stop and face me, I don't let her pull on me and I don't let her push on me.

I have bantered on for long enough. Here are the comparison shots from 9/20 and 10/5. Tell me what you think???

You can see the swelling in the back leg in the above collage. I will update if its something funky.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


While this is definitely a blog for Tia, I may, every so often, sneak in a little bit of something else from time to time...but I will try to keep it all about Tia, or at least centered around her!

Yesterday, all three girls were left inside for the day because of bad weather. Yep, we totally baby our horses. With Tia, my concern is that #1 her rain rot isn't completely healed yet and I don't want to do anything to make it flare up again and #2 the last thing I need is for her to be out in the rain and wind and end up with some weird upper respiratory thing! Her immune system just isn't there yet, and I don't want to risk it.

That being said, Gabs went over to feed Tia her lunch. While she was eating, Gabs did what any normal horse person would have done. She checked everyone elses water. Good on Gabs right! Right! Well, apparently Mia had other thoughts. Mia and I are about to have a come to Jesus meeting about personal space and respecting it! She saw the door was open and took the opp to not only push Gabs aside, but to push open the door the rest of the way and LEAVE the barn.

Now, Gabs has been around horses since she was little so she isn't new to horses. And thank God she wasn't hurt by the fat evil pony when she plowed out of the stall. Now, if it had been me, things wouldn't have been so nice afterwards. Gabs just nicely walked out and got her and put her back in her stall. I, on the other hand, would have taken that moment to remind her why I have my space and she has her space and that because she violated my space she now gets to work....or sit on cross ties while I slowly clean her stall and the other stalls and make feed for the night and talk to the goats and call my insurance agent and wash my get the point???

Sigh. Gabs did absolutely the right thing...Mia just makes me want to strangle her sometimes!!! (Just in case you are is Mia)

Now, on to Tia! Last night was incredibly humid. I am the type of person that if I am going to sweat like I have no sense, then I had better be in a barn! And sweat in the barn last night I did!

When I first got there, I pulled Tia out for her 2nd dose of Panacur. Just a halter and lead rope, let her smell it, she knew what was coming...she wasn't quick enough. I have had my fill of horses that HATE being wormed. If she thought she was being rude, I have news for her...."I laugh in your general direction" (Yep - say that as John Cleese and you will understand!)

So wormer done, gave her a treat, put her on cross ties for the first time and walked away. Now, before anyone stones me to death, I walked away for a reason. I was told by her previous owner that she would pull back until the leather snapped on her breakaway and then just stand there. I don't have time for that ridiculous nonsense. I don't use breakaways, partly because of that exact reason! So if she was going somewhere, it wouldn't be the halter that broke..the ct's would quick release and she would go right back in them. While she stood there like a good girl, I cleaned her stall, emptied her water, threw her new hay and talked with Gabs a bit. When I was done with her stall, I then asked her to continue to be patient and let me brush her. No problems. She moved over when asked and when pressure was applied to the cross tie I politely asked her to move forward. We then sprayed her mane, with the big scary noisy sprayer, with no problems. She then got to go eat her dinner.

I have no idea how I got this lucky with this little girl. She amazes me more and more everyday. I have started testing her boundaries with walking behind her and bugging her while she is eating or just hanging out. She honestly seems to just enjoy the attention. I'm sure that once she is back up to weight she will present me with some interesting challenges, to say the least, but for now, I am enjoying my little Tia girl!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

DeWormers, Spray Bottles and Feed! Oh My!

Well that week was super short!! LOL! I guess I just cant resist bragging on this beautiful little girl!

Traffic was a nightmare last night which resulted in my not getting to the barn until around 7pm. All of the girls were out, so it wasn't a big deal. This week starts our Panacur Pac week. I have to admit that I was def a little apprehensive about worming her. I didn't know if this was going to be a "hold on for dear life and hope to God that a little stayed in her mouth" type of worming or if it would be a "staples button That Was Easy" type of deal. Just to be safe, I expected the Hold On For Dear Life scenario and got The Staples Button Deal. I was very impressed. Let her sniff it, she gave me the "Really Mom?" face, in it went, and done. No hissy fit, no fighting. She got lots of love and an apple for being such a good girl.

She then went in to eat her grain for the night, which apparently is taking her forever to eat! In all honesty, I would much rather it take her forever to eat it then have to worry about her choking on it because she is wolfing it down.

While she was eating, I took the time to take my brand new spray bottle and fill it with Healthy Hair Care Moisturizer. I love this stuff. I always get amazing results when I use it. The main and tail grow in thicker, fuller and softer. Its amazing! (sidetracked...sorry) So I sprayed my hand with the conditioner first, which resulted in a sideways glance and a step back. Its def the sound of the sprayer and not the sprayer itself that she is apprehensive about. So while she ate, I quietly sprayed and massaged the moisturizer in her mane. She loved every minute of it. I am hoping that it will grow in nice and full!

No pictures today. Roo left everyone in today because of the rain, this evening should be interesting to see how she does spending 24 hours in a stall.

I am really enjoying the barn work. While I am not getting home until after 9pm most nights, it has proven to be pretty beneficial to my mental state here lately. Sometimes, I feel like I am running and running and have No Clue where I am supposed to be in the end. Since getting Tia, I know where I am running to. The Barn.

Monday, October 1, 2012


This past Saturday, the 29th, Tia got the opportunity to go out with Mia and Ber and the two evil goats! I can not tell you how excited I was for this to happen!!

Tia will remain in the riding ring until I get her weight up, while the other two horses will go out in the pasture right next to her. They were supposed to go out first this Saturday morning. That didn't happen, which I am actually grateful for. I kinda wanted to be there to see her reaction to the other two right there with her.

It was pretty uneventful! I let the two girls out and my Mom starts telling me to hurry up! (She was standing at the gate with Gwen) Tia actually cantered to the other end of the ring and then did a little trotting!! And I missed the entire thing! Ugh! And all because Mia decided she needed to break through the gate and have a look at the new feed bags in the feed room. Evil fat pony! But, Mom did say that she looked cute, other then being a bag of bones.

It may be wishful thinking, but the girls and I are starting to see some improvement in her weight. Not a whole lot, but enough to make me feel better!

I went to the feed store before heading to the barn on Saturday to pick up feed for the next month or so. She was on Blue Seal Senior, 2lbs 3x a day. She is now on BS Senior, 2lbs 3x a day and BS Performance LS, 1 lb 3x a day. If you aren't familiar with Blue Seal Feeds, they are phenomenal  I also picked up a Panacur Pac to get her wormed this week. Good Lord that stuff is expensive!!!

Anywho, here are the pictures from her first time being out with the other girls. Enjoy!

Oh! And on Friday night, Tia got to meet Lauren! I used to ride with Lauren at my trainers barn years ago! It was so nice to be able to catch up and just hang out!

I hope everyone enjoys their week! I may or may not have anything to post/update this week. But, you can be sure that if there is anything I will update!

Erin Jo