Monday 11 March 2024

There and Back Again

 I'm getting to be not so great at this blogging thing this spring.

I was having such a good start to the year, then of course we had a sore backed pony which led me down the inevitable rabbit hole of saddle fitting, tack issues, hormones, maybe we need a vet, maybe a smaller jockey, maybe the ulcers are back etc etc etc. That one can spiral fast (and of course I let it and went to Level 10 Worry rather than 'maybe we just overdid it on the day' :/)

It's still pretty early in the year, but our little detour did still impact a few of my plans and our calendar is clear through mid April. Which is fine, because the spring feelings are strong in the Banana Pony and the chaos levels are higher than ideal in all the creatures inhabiting our little backyard Ponyville.

Not helped by the beginning of March bringing absolutely ridiculous weather and leaving snow on the ground for a week.

Sophie's 'let me outta here' face. She gets out to graze most days but it's just so wet and everything is so muddy it's pretty limited right now. We've had numerous windstorms too, so it feels like it's been a part time job picking up all the branches and fixing fences.

I did of course have Sophie's saddle checked (it got a thumbs up which...I hope is true, lol I have no faith anymore) but I also added this thinline pad because I thought it might be the safest thing that might help but also not impact the saddle fit. I went down the rabbit hole of looking for actual science on any of them and came up pretty empty, but here, take my money anyway, I guess. She also got a new (Stubben Equi-soft) girth which is kind of a 'meh' for her currently, but I think once summer comes or if I clip her it will be a win (she's annoyed by her winter coat getting caught/laying the wrong way in it so we're sticking with her sheepskin crescent girth most days). It's actually slightly fascinating how loose you can leave the Stubben girth though and still have it doing it's job. 

Doing something about that fence behind her is my other current part time job. It's horse safe, but it's on it's last legs. As you might be able to see in some of my pictures, the neighbours on both sides have a lot of stuff piled or built right up against us. We've been slowly reclaiming the space and replacing fences and planting hedges. That rock pile behind her is also a work in progress, I would like to get them installed before we put the ring footing down.

Kitty Judge at E

The obvious of having the vet take a look isn't as obvious as you'd first think because the vet visits us once a month and is very busy in her own practice, so I'm looking at mid April for non emergent appts. But, fingers crossed Sophie seems pretty happy (and has a bodywork person coming to take a look in a couple of weeks) so I'll let it wait.

No turnout plus windstorm meant I had some regrets this day.

Speaking of vet visits, the terrible twosome are in need of gelding. I might actually take them over to the vet clinic on the island for a special trip rather than wait the month or two for a local appt. Buck continues to be a pretty standard baby cob, my guy though is giving signs he'll be a much nicer gelding and that we should get that done soon-ish. Even if the cocky boy thing just who he is, being able to turn him out with adult horses (hopefully Sophie can do the job) will be a win for keeping him in check. I can't even believe I am implying there is any scenario where Sophie would bring chaos levels down, but I think we might have found one!

Fingers crossed for group turnout this spring

I thought the potted plants would look nice, but we're on version 2.0 of 'horses definitely wouldn't eat this plant (RIP expensive palm trees)' and yet they live to tear them apart and pull them out of the pots.

Been keeping track of how much they're growing. This isn't super accurate, just a weight tape and trying to measure height on a non level surface, but you can see the trend.



  1. that's reassuring that the saddle checked out ok!! also love the kitty judge at E lol!!

    1. I think Barn Kitty has decided to stay, she is always waiting for me by sleeping on top of the hay bales in the mornings and happily follows me around all day.

  2. The saddle fit being good is a positive thing and the girth looks interesting. But the saddle looks like it’s tipping back from her whither. But I am no expert.

    1. Thank you for saying this and validating my feelings! It creeps forward when I longe with the old girth, which OK could be a forward girth groove on a round pony thing. Even so, longeing with the 'fancy' girths, the saddle stays put and looks level but when I ride it still feels like the balance is off, slightly tipping me back. I'm in a bit of a predicament where I feel what I feel but no answers so I'm trying to organize another opinion.

    2. The balance *does* seem off (okay, from one picture, so take that with a pinch of salt). This would be more of a rider-unbalancing than a horse-back-hurting problem, but I see what you see, too!

    3. Once you see it you can't unsee it! In the fitter's defense, if I use the girth she recommended the saddle doesn't creep forward and tip like in the picture, but also S hates that girth, and I still feel pushed to the back of the saddle, so....;)

    4. Are you using a point billet by any chance? Round ponies often benefit from a point billet but I echo that oddness of it being a little high in front in that photo, and maybe it's just that photo but it seems way too far forward. Sometimes it helps but I've been lurking in a group on FB called Saddle Fitting Answers. It is based on photos only, and it is a FB group but it's a thought. In that photo I can totally see it pushing you backwards if you sat in it, to put you at the center of her gravity, the saddle slides forward and you end up sitting way in the back seat

  3. Ha, ha! Barn kitty judge at E. Made me smile. And that's a neat idea to keep growth charts on the boys. It will be fun to look back on that someday. Glad you are getting some saddle time too despite the see-sawing weather. It never ceases to amaze me how much the weather adds or detracts to the horse experience.

  4. I adore all three of your ponies (And Bridget too). They make me smile whenever I see a new post from you. They entertain me from afar. The boys are growing up fast. Good luck with saddles. I DESPISE saddle shopping and fixing :)