So today I was looking forward to seeing my sweet angel boy!
Work has been stressful and it's nice to sometimes just loose yourself in your horse. As I approached Laz to halter him up, he walked off really poorly. His leg and hoof seemed strange. A little like...disconnected? He was limping a bit and definitely showing signs of favoring it and not wanting to move as he typically has been. It's been pretty dry here and his paddock area has gotten a bit more firm so perhaps that is why. Even the BO said, "Let's take him on the grass where it's cushy" so we could have him stretch out and walk/loosen up in more comfort. I thought that seemed like a good idea being the grass has moisture in it too. He did walk better and with each step it looked better so we continued after thinking that maybe I wouldn't push it.
So we walked around the property next to the round pen, near the house, along side of the arena and towards to front where the dirt road is-all on the grass.
Everything was fine until we got to the front by the dirt road, where Laz hasn't been in about 8 mths, and my sweet little TB, turned into a monster OTTB who was flighty, sooooooooo tightly wound up that he was jigging, farting, head and eyes were up and blazing and he did several jump back, side flinging moves. There was a tractor across the road but oddly enough he didn't seemed worried about that..he was worried about something we couldn't see next door and was acting like a stud, untrained idiot that could be dangerous.
THANK god my BO "C" was with us and she talked me through the entire hour we spent with him out there.
It was nothing short of scary and a few times I felt like 'this is going to end with someone getting hurt'. Lazarus a few times looked like he was going to rear on top of me, or side jump and trample (ugh) but thankfully we worked through it and I remained controlling him through his temper tantrums of wanting to spook and BOLT. We kept walking, leading and talking to him, talking to each other, and reminding him to "WALK" when he acted up in my bear voice which in the end he responded to and would lick when given the command. I don't know if his little OTTB brain gets overloaded and then he just looses it, but when he gets like that, it's so hard to be the brave leader I need to be for him. BUT...I did it. Now, that isn't to say that I was brave. I wasn't! I even told "C" that "I think we should stop" because I few times, I felt so out of control but she reminded me that I can't reward his bad behavior and I have to work through it and not quit. So we did. We kept walking him around the front lawn, in between the pines trees, around the arena, around the garden with me leading him and being a bit more in front of him to 'guide' him. She is teaching me to be his leader. Often it's so easy to hand the horse you are struggling with to someone else but sometimes it's best to have the guidelines/help next to you and do the work yourself. Not easy that is for sure. I think "C" has the ability to know when I'm scared and talk me through it as well as Lazarus, lol and adjust the lesson to fit that, so that he and I can work together and communicate.
Around we went, and when he acted up (and I mean UP like a 20 foot tall, veins pumping, coiled TB energy and body shaking with "RUN") I just would say in my bear voice "WALK LAZ!" and check him in his roped halter/lead and then to keep on walking and leading him. When he responded well and walked relaxed we would stop and reward him with allowing him to graze in the 'scary' spots. It worked well. It was scary and I was scared but I did it and now feel a little better of having another side of him come out, and handling it.
Needless to say, no pictures...are you kidding me, I had a dragon that I was leading around! :)
So, now I think we are going to be working in the lawn area a bit more so Laz can extend his brain to 'trail riding' and not go nuts. He walked great during his antics and didn't do anything to hurt himself.
I took him back in his pasture where we worked on ground tying while I groomed him. A couple minor reminders and setting him back in place but other than that he did great. After his grooming, I put him in the round pen for a brief 15 minute grazing and he did move off a bit stiff for his few steps after standing still for grooming. Something I'm keeping my eye for now....any changes.
Cliff comes out next Friday and I'm always so anxious to have his eyes on Lazarus's feet.