I think I might like Isabeau better for her, but we will see…
As you know, I lost 3 horses in a very short time in tragic and unusual circumstances. I’m not complaining, this is all part of horse ownership. But I think I had been really lucky to not have many premature deaths in my herd for many, many years. So, I was quite unsettled to lose 3 in 6 months.
I guess it set me up to be a softy.
And that’s how she came to be.
You see, I had been going back and forth to Loomis Equine hospital, and many of the vets had been making trips here. So, we were becoming very familiar.
During one of those trips to the hospital, I met a 14 year-old mare who had no owner. Not sure the circumstances, but she was left there.
Anyway, the main point was that she had no home.
Then I showed up, all weepy and sad… and missing two of my mares…
Well, you can kinda guess how it went down.
Basically, I heard she didn’t have a home and well…
… she has Morgan eyes…
so without really putting much thought into it, I said I would ‘sponsor’ her.
Sponsor? That really made no sense because sponsorship on that level, where I took on all of her feed and board responsibilities – is basically ownership. Which they all knew – but it took me a while to come around to that.
I wanted her, even if she didn’t know if she wanted me. So after a month of sponsorship, I took over as her owner.
The great trainers at the equine hospital (they have a hunter jumper facility there) had her in the ring and was trying to use her as a kids’ horse (she’s small) but that wasn’t working out too well.
So, they took her on trails – and she killed it!
Aha! Perfect. So I decided to ride her around the trails at the hospital.
She wouldn’t let me. She’d race sideways unless someone was holding her. After I was on, she was fine… but, (with my tender new hip, I couldn’t hold her and stand on the mounting block and do what I needed to do to train her myself.
I took her to a local trainer who we all love. Jerily worked with Isabelle for 3 months and loved her. They had worked through the mounting issue and were having a nice time on several trail rides!
I came out and rode her on two trailsides. I liked her! She wasn’t lovey or friendly, but she was very enjoyable to ride. So, I prepared to bring her home.
Uh… and then, the third time I was going to trailride her, she did the same thing – she ran 50 feet sideways. And then she did that for an entire week with Jerily.
We figured she was cycling. (We did a full medical workup at the Equine hospital so I knew it wasn’t her legs, back, feet or teeth.). Hmmm. I purchased some herbs, waited a week and tried again.
Just yesterday, we took her on a trail and I walked her for about a mile before getting on – and she settled down and was perfect!
In August, she is going to a trainer who will ride her up in the forests of Tahoe for 2 months. Then she’ll come home. If she still has the mounting issue when she comes home in Oct, it will be cool enough for me to work with her in my arena, and I’ll be healed enough to not worry about her shooting sideways.
All in all, I feel that she is a worried mare who has not been treated well in her life. I think being here and decompressing more, will be helpful. I know that when I was walking her on the mile trail, she was very different… softer, more engaged. She liked me leading. She liked not having the responsibility. She liked chilling and knowing that whatever was going on was not demanding.
I think she has work anxiety. Or she works herself up and cracks under pressure – but once she knows the drill and that everything is OK, she settles right in and is a joy. I think she settled in at Jerily’s and was contented to do her daily thing.
And/Or, she might have a horrible cycle…
I will find out… and truly, if she doesn’t work out as a riding horse, she will be Dalton’s mare. He needs a mare.
I did her DNA through Texas A&M (I hear dnamyhorse.com might be more accurate). It came back as half MORGAN (yeah, I knew it!) and half Standardbred. STANDARDBRED?! But it makes sense if you saw her.
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