Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The Changing Lens: Part 1

I came across some questions that are circulating on horse blogs.  I thought I'd take a stab at answering some them (since its too wet and cold to ride these days) -- but with a twist: I've noticed a change in my approach to riding and horses from when I was younger, so I'm going to focus on that a bit.

1.  Mares or Geldings?
When I was a teenager, I was fortunate to have a horse to ride.  She belonged to a family in town, who's children had left the nest.  She wasn't getting ridden and I was dying to do just that.  Her name was Charohanas -- or Charco for short.  She was a grey QH/Arabian with a snarky attitude.  I adored her.  I rode Charco almost everyday after school, all through high school.  I didn't care about boys, or dances much.  After swim practice, I headed for the foothills where Charco lived in a big pasture.  I rode her bareback; sometimes with my best friend and sometimes alone.  Before and after Charco, I always rode geldings and liked how un-snarky they are.  And then came Lucy.  Yes, she can be a prima dona and a jealous witch -- but I feel more connected to her than I have with any other horse -- except maybe Charco. 

2.  Green broke or fully broke?
When I was young, I thought green broke was fun.  I liked the clean slate and the opportunity to have a horse without baggage. 
Now, I like fully broke.  Especially after Winston -- green broke can mean my body gets broke.  I'm not flexible any more and my balance is definitely not what it used to be. 

3.  Would you own a "hot" breed (i.e., Arabian or TB)?
I've always been attracted to sensitive forward horses.  Arabians were my favorite breed when I was young, followed by thoroughbreds.  I'm too tall for Arabians but I would own another TB.  ... you also can't beat a sweet QH face, and they have the best brain.  When I was shopping for my first horse, I looked at a lot of Appendix QH (half QH and half TB).  When I sold Winston, I was looking for any breed.  Actually, when I bought Winston I was also looking at any breed, and any color, that met my needs. I was looking for attitude, willingness, and sensitivity.  Fortunately, Lucy has all three of those qualities so I'm not looking anymore. 

4.  What was your dream horse growing up?
I don't think I had a dream horse.  I read a lot of books; many of them with horses.  I think each horse in each book (or short story) was my dream horse.  I just wanted a horse.  Any horse.  Short, tall, fat, thin, sound or crippled.  I didn't care.  I just wanted a horse.

How about you?  What do you prefer?


  1. I def. prefer geldings. I started turning on the advanced search options and selecting geldings only when looking for horses for sale.

  2. Easy question: Four legs and a tail, that's all I need, although tail could be optional.

  3. I love those questions. My friends and I talk a lot about the mare/gelding thing--most prefer geldings. I did, too, until Beautiful Girl and then Leah. Before that, I had all geldings--first two horses in my teens and all the way up. I'm still bonded with Cowboy, a gelding, but Leah is really getting into my heart--as is Beautiful Girl. Most people who have mares say they bond deeper. As for green or broke, I prefer broke, however, Leah is green (from the days I preferred green) and so is BG, so I have some work to do. And, I can say, it has been a lot of fun to work with a green horse again in the saddle. I prefer QH's--always have. The western horse was always my dream horse.

  4. I've had great mares, and great geldings, and really have no preference. That said, my relationships with mares tend to be more intense, I guess I would say, although my geldings and I are also very closely bonded. But it's just different with mares.

    I've always tended to like very forward horses. Dawn and Red are quite hot, even though one is a TB and the other is a QH (although performance bred - there are hot QHs too). Pie is much more lively than when I got him, and can be reactive at times. Missy is a very solid, calm mare, and the older I get - I'm in my 60s now and solid and calm is a lot more appealing than it used to be.

    I don't mind green broke and am happy to do a lot of my own training. But there's a big difference between green broke and a horse with baggage (as you're well aware) - a horse with baggage/problems due to prior handling/training is a whole different thing and much more of a challenge. I wouldn't mind a well-trained horse that wasn't messed up.

    I've always loved all horses, ugly, fat, big, tall, you name it. Don't care about the breed or color, but do care that the horse have decent conformation and a good temperament.

  5. Oh my gosh, I was like National Velvet (in the book) I wanted a different horse to ride for every day of the week!


Thanks so much for commenting! I love the conversation.