Saturday, December 11, 2010

Training Log: schooling day

I wasn't sure about riding Jackson today.   He's been squirty in the bowels and sore in the jaw.  We buy hay once a month.  We don't have room to store more than that and it is so darned expensive here ($23 per square bale for orchard grass hay) that we get it in bits throughout the year.  Jackson has a sensitive tummy so if the hay changes from month to month in terms of quality it takes him a few days to adjust.  This batch was definitely different -- good, just different -- so he was doing the cow plop thing instead of nice and neat balls of green.  Then he had his teeth done and, well, I'll save you the description.  Let's just say I've been washing his tail and hind legs every day. 
So, I debated riding.  Sometimes, work improves his gut and he was looking at me over the pasture fence with a "lets go" look on his face so I tacked him up and off we went.  He was awesome!  He took the bit readily.  He was very light, obedient and accepting of the contact.  AND, he was balanced and happy happy happy.  Me too.  We did a lot of trot and canter work.  I wanted it to be fun for him since he's had a crummy few days and it ended up being fun for both of us.  I couldn't believe how little leg I needed in the canter.  He wasn't falling in or out hardly at all.  He was pretty darn straight.  ....and, get this, my boot zipper stayed up!!!  I think he must have been really uncomfortable in his mouth and that was translating to resistance and, somehow, his balance. 

4 comments:

  1. Wow - bummer about your hay prices!

    I've been complaining about $9.75 for squares of orchard / timothy. ($13 when you figure in the six hour round trip to pick it up) Is that the usual price out there? We had no last cutting here due to drought, so all the suppliers are jacking the prices...

    Sounds like a ride was just what Jackson needed. Glad the dentist visit made such a difference :)

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  2. By square bale, do you mean the #100 ones you can pick up with your hands? I hope not. I pay $40 for an #800 round bale of Timothy. This year, the hay crop was so good, I paid $120 a ton (delivered) for second cutting alfalfa. But a couple of years ago, I was paying $240 a ton/delivered. So, prices have come down half in my area.

    We used to buy month to month, too, when we boarded, and we paid much more--especially as it got further and further away from hay season.

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  3. Unfortunately, it is the 100 lb ones that we pay $23 for. All our hay is trucked in -- the orchard comes from northern California. We used to feed Timothy but it comes from Oregon and was up to $27 a bale. I wish we had room to store more. The quality really varies depending on the time of year.

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  4. Ugh! I'm so sorry! I do remember the days we had to do that--and the quality was hit and miss. :(

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