Sunday, January 4, 2009

Taming the Woolly Wild Pony

Well, taming her fur that is. ;-) Dreamy did not grow a winter coat the first year I owned her. So I always have blanketed her. And the last two winters I have clipped her anyway, so I never really knew what kind of coat she might now grow. This winter, her hair became woolly and shaggy pretty quickly in late fall....hmm amazing what good nutrition will do! I knew with my job I would not be able to ride as much as in past fall/winters, so I opted to just leave her be and see how she did. To me, a horse's natural winter coat is better than any blanket I can buy.

Then I finally got a lesson scheduled for today that I really thought we would be able to actually have. The forecast did not call for snow. LOL! Unfortunately I had to cancel it a few hours beforehand, as my instructor let me know it was VERY cold at the indoor and with Dreamy's respiratory issues, it would not be a good plan to ride her there. I was bummed and almost just said the hell with it, since I want to have a lesson SO BADLY. But I know in my heart that I have to do what is right for my horse.

Anyway, yesterday I got really worried that her long hair would make her sweaty to the point that she would be a mess. I hate when a woolly horse gets overheated and the sweat makes them all foamy and such. I knew I would not be working her that hard in the lesson, but being in a new place and being trailered sometimes can make a horse a little nervous and then sweat. Dreamy is usually laid back, but still, I just KNEW that if I left her hairy, it would be an awful mess.
It did not take that long, nor did I do a great job. :P My blades were a little dull, so the clipper marks make her look as though a mouse gnawed on her a bit. Oh well.....it is only hair and will grow back in. I don't care what anyone thinks since she is more comfortable! Here she is with her high trace clip today, one day after the clip. I did do her neck and chest too, but for some reason you cannot tell in these photos. I groomed/tacked outside because it was much warmer in the sun than in the barn!



Now, I hate the actual job of clipping. It is so messy and I usually end up halfway done before I realize I am wearing a polar fleece jacket, pants, or both! (Yes this happened one year!) Plus now I have to watch the weather even more closely and dress Dreamy appropriately. Now the last two winters it was no problem to change her clothes several times a day (mostly in the spring) because I was home full time. Now with school, I have no idea how I am going to swing this. We shall see.

However the one good part of clipping? The cool clothes! I love blankets! I would like everything to match of course, but that is just not always an option. And blankets tend to be blue or green. :P Oh well. Here is Dreamy with her cute exercise rug.

And anyway, I did end up riding today. It warmed up pretty well outside in the sun so I rode for about 25 mins. in the snowy pasture. The footing was OK for some trotting. Nothing that exciting but I at least got to ride.

1 comment:

  1. I'm totally on the same page with finding out halfway through a clip job that I'm wearing VERY non-clipping-friendly clothes! D'oh! So long as it zips all the way up the front or has a high neck we're all good, though -- I can deal with hair on the outside. Down the shirt, not so much!

    Willie was trace-clipped twice so far this year, but I may have to do a full/hunter clip soon because the unclipped parts are WAY too hairy and he gets very sweaty on the warm days. He was born in Vermont and he gets very plush, even when he's blanketed from early on.

    Schneider's (sstack.com) has a bunch of nice blankets in bright colors for cheap (1200D for under $100) and I think Dover and VTO both have some on sale, too! I also love to coordinate everything, between the eventing and racing influences it just HAS to be done!

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