Sound the trumpets! We have a new horse at the farm and he’s quite a character. He likes to lick people like a dog and is very fond of people in general. Indy is a joy to interact with. My property is perimeter fenced and when it’s time to bring the horses in off my pastures, I just open the gate and they all run to their separate grain eating areas. The first day I called them Indy came galloping as enthusiastically as everyone else.
The girls each ran to their stalls or paddocks to gobble up their grain. Rather than picking a paddock Indy stood in my courtyard looking at me with a confused expression, “Where is my spot?” I called him over and he easily walked at liberty through the property with me until I showed him the paddock with his grain. Most horses would have gone barrelling into ANY location with all the excitement, but he looks for guidance and accepts it.
Indy belonged to my neighbour, Noreen, who I had met while teaching her a few ground lessons. She wasn’t experienced with horses and decided it would be best to find a new home for the very sporty 10 year old warmblood x Quarter Horse, Indy, that she had recently purchased. I suggested that I would take a look at him for a capable 12 year old student of mine. I asked my working student, Maddie, to do the riding since my back isn’t always up for riding.
Indy had been off for some time and he requires an experienced rider and handler to get the best out of him. He liked to leave the mounting block as soon as his rider was astride as if he was employed in the Pony Express. He also carried his head like a giraffe and gawked about him so much that it actually slowed his front feet down, even as his back feet continued pushing forward in their haste. When he wasn’t gawking he was very forward and could get heavy in the bridle. Like many horses he travels crooked and unbalanced, preferring to look to the outside of circles and fall in with his body.
We decided that he was too much horse for my younger student, but Maddie and I fell in love with Indy and we brought him home. Maddie intends to rehabilitate Indy’s body and bring his training back to where it was when he was younger. We have contacted a previous trainer of his and found out that he was a great guy to work with and competed over fences. We also plan to use ground work to improve upon his earlier training and balance.
Noreeen had put weight on Indy, but he still has more weight to gain. You can see his ribs at this point. He also had the Thrush, a fungus, deep in a crevice in his left front foot (to learn more about thrush read Nicole’s bl
og http://twinkletoeshoofblog.blogspot.ca) which was causing him to put excess weight on his left toe to avoid the pain. He applied most of his weight to his right front foot and consequently he has one upright foot and one flat foot. He’s like a lady walking around with one high heel and one ballet flat. His nutrition was very out of balance and it’s easy to see in his hooves the positive change in the structure since Noreen bought him. We consulted Nicole and she felt that his feet would continue to improve with proper care.
We’ve had Indy here for a couple of weeks now and seem to have eliminated the Thrush, but it will take some time for his hoof to grow back healthy.
He’s loving his liberty lessons and is also starting some mild work under saddle. We plan to use some horse yoga to improve Indy’s way of going.
Stay tuned to the blog and watch Indy’s rehabilitation unfold.