Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Harley is a poster child!

Mane training on the "cribmeister"
My wild boy has a mane that likes to go in both directions at different points along his neck. John did a quick braid job to see if we could train it to one side. I know, it's silly and vain, especially since we're not going to a show, but don't we all really want our horses to look their best? And doesn't it set off that lovely neck--with that thick throatlatch from doing what he does best in his down time--CRIBBING! (Check out the flex in that board!)

I had Friday off and took him on a lovely ride. This is my favorite season for riding in the woods; no bugs (or very few), and golden light everywhere. It's also excellent mushroom hunting season for those who know what they are looking at. Fall is such a vibrant time of year.

Regarding Harley's "poster"...I tracked down some photos of him in the winner's circle at Suffolk Downs. Now it's just a matter of purchasing them and asking the photographer if I can post them on the blog crediting his work. Since we're his 4th owners, I feel like I'm filling in some blanks from his past. The photos show him as just a baby, at 2 and 3, back before he had big knees from running too hard, too fast, and (IMHO) too young. But even with his quirks, fears, and moments of bravery, he's still in the winner's circle for me. I know it's blind love, and I'm sure John knows it too, but when you finally get your first horse at my age, it brings out the youth in you--once again I'm 12, crooning over photos of my baby boy and giving him hugs good night.

Our Ruffy girl
John and I took Ruffy and Harley on a ride Sunday. Yet another lovely fall day, but with the low light, I didn't get any good pictures from the ride. We did a reverse loop up to the quarry. This allowed for a nice canter uphill in sandy, soft footing. Ruffy thought this was lots of fun and immediately sped up the hill. Harley trotted a few steps, then realized he would be left in the dust if he didn't pick up the pace. He broke into a canter too and snorted his way up the hill to catch Ruffy. It's fun to see their ex-racehorse sides come to life. " I'm winning, Harley, and you can't pass me!" She's our speedster horse!

Yesterday, they all got their teeth floated. Rolex Girl was the best behaved, although she did roll her eyes a time or two. And, she lost a baby tooth that was just waiting to come out! Ruffy and Harley were pretty good too. I can't imagine what a horse must think when this procedure is done. The folks from Scotia Equine Dental were awesome--patient, kind, and caring.

We got in an evening ride by 5:30, just as the sun was beginning to slide behind the trees. This is Harley's "spooky time" in the woods. Although, I think something was moving about across the beaver pond--turkeys or deer perhaps. Both Harley and Ruffy stopped at the pond's edge and stared across the water. All we heard was a raven cawing from a treetop, but we saw nothing. It was a quick walk home, it always is, with Ruffy speed-walking and making Harley jog to catch up. Heaven forbid he's out in the woods at dusk!


  1. The braiding should work if you keep doing it. I noticed that Flurry's mane stayed on the "correct" side for ages after our last show

    As for your love affair with your horse, doesn't he deserve a Special Human?

  2. Lovely, lovely!!! My favorite time if year as well.
    It can spooky for the horses, with animals preparing for winter in so many ways. Just today , all the horses were in the woods of their runs ....then, they suddenly all ran back to the barn! I went out and heard crunching branches, huffing and grunting in the woods nearby! Things are seeking food, shelter, moving from hunters.

    I know what you mean about the mane, free flowing both sides. Wa's was on the right, with a spurt near the top, flipping to the left. I spend tons of effort to keep it to one side, sometimes letting it grow long.

    Wa had an accident 2 1/2 weeks ago. She ripped her neck on a wire fence. It made her favor the left side. I also got some corrections to my body stance, while riding. I'm more balanced. Wa's mane..now it's ALL on the left! Though, for the mane to be on the right is American, she's gone European.
    It's interesting!

    Well, you take care with the rains..sorry its dark so soon . We've got till Nov till it gets dark that early, being on the West coast.

    It's nice catching up with you!


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