About this Blog

Meet my very 1st horse, Lazarus.
I couldn't wait for Santa anymore or ask one more time for a pony for my bday (after age 30 it got embarrassing). I took matters in my own hands and I finally decided to pick a pony that needed a new home. Laz found me as I contemplated with this idea. He was sweet yet very sassy, fresh off the track, Thoroughbred (OTTB).
Join us for our re-training, rehabbing from laminitis and testing all parts of mixed up horsemanship and partnership, and luck...

Friday, November 19, 2010


If there was a way to bottle this and stamp an Rx on it, many would be cured.
There is no better siiiiiiigh than your horse's sweet face waiting for you to come get him to be played with...
Yikes though, it was COLD and windy today.  Not HORRIBLE but cold enough that I made a mental note to finally cave in and dig out my thermal underpants for riding.  Laz was a good boy.  We worked on a little Parelli games (A+) and then our figure 8's which are my homework.  I don't fully understand why they calm a horse down, but I have seen almost all the Natural Horseman People use it.  I can assume it has to do with giving a worried horse a mental task to focus on, all the while moving their bodies so they don't feel trapped??? Input! 
Anyway, we did ground work for about 15 minutes and I decided to hop on and ride despite the cold and wind.  Nothing better than a warm bare back and Laz's coat is THICK.  
Not Cushings thick, just 'are you jealous of my mink thick fur coat'
We started out just walking as it's been a week since we rode (what?? Ground work took over) so I wanted to get reacquainted.  He was great.  I could tell he was a bit tense and ready to spring but I just sat heavy, gave him rein support contact, and talked to him.  No spooks.  We worked on some trot work but not too much because he was a bit limpy so I just asked for about 15 minutes of Circle 8's at the trot and 15 minutes of Circle 8's at the walk.  He seemed to be really focused.  I was worried about him getting b.o.r.e.d. but he was into it.  I did feel a difference in him where he was snorting more and extending a tinsy bit more.  It was a good working ride.  He was a gentleman despite some of his worries he never bucked or spooked, until after our ride when I was hand walking him out of arena and he blasted out of the gate TB style...but then stop and  circled facing me like "Shit...sorry, I totally thought we saw a horse eating bear."  

Speaking of extending-he is so chop chop choppy with his trot.  I wonder if he'll ever be able to extend out and give a beautiful leggy action springy trot like so many of your horses give.  
Whats odd is to me, it seems his limited by his front end vs his back end.
Thoughts for when you review pictures and videos-please!

His extended trot (leg leg leg!!!) in Sept 0'9 before laminitis-puh
Comfy YES, flashy no
Major extendo which broke out into canter (ignore my jockey position)..see how his fronts look like they are so limited and don't extend from shoulder?
April '09-pre laminitis-most extended trot I've been able to capture/see
I think there may be a Unicorn in the pine trees too

July 2010

Oct 2010

I wonder if that is from laminitis or is that just him? I see MUCH improvement in his trotting and balance from healing, but I just hope and wonder; as he gets better, more balanced and stronger-will he have a big, healthy, sound trot?
Is there a way to achieve it by building different muscles, exercises, etc?
Maybe just time and we are in no rush.

And for you, our dear readers!
A 15% off coupon from EcoLicious Equestrian for when you spend over $50
I won a free product via their FB page and they said I could post this coupon to all I know, so enjoy!
Coupon is good until Dec 31st and the Promo code is: H3MB
Click HERE for their website...I'm lusting after the Hoof Therapy Serum (hmmm wonder why?!)


  1. Re: trot...patience...he is still not 100% in the rear and that will make a difference. Exercises? YES!!! Jec Aristotle Ballou - Equine Exercises. So often horse owners work with their horse in a certain disipline, repeating the same movements each training, which builds for their disipline. BUT, equate this to our bodies, if we always went to the gym and only did..say treadmill...cardio, lungs and lower body would be great, but...upper body would not benefit. Trot comes from many different areas of the body and how they are carried, abs up with base of neck lifted, but also more subtle areas as well. Develop a workout that does them all, then once the rear is 100%, another deep bodywork, and see the difference. You're making great progress and love that you are doing Parelli games with him it seems to fit him well, so keep up the good work! Hugs to you, Laz...oh and MASON too!

  2. his trot in the video looks funny i can't pinpoint why. i'm not sure if he was planning to break to the walk but right before he takes off cantering he looks lame to me. How does your saddle fit him? From the pic from '09 he can clearly extend and an ill fitting saddle can and will cause a horse to not want to use his shoulder. these are just my ideas as i am by no means a professional. also i would have your farrier watch him trot the next time he/she is out.

  3. Laz looks good to me in the photos/videos now and then. He is where he is. You are doing so well with him - he has a "happy, healthy Laz" trot right now. It may seem choppy compared to a horse that hasn't been through what he has, but so what? You are helping him heal and you have come so far. I say, celebrate your journey and where you are now and as long as he isn't hurting, then his trot is perfect! You don't want to be so determined to reach a supposed "perfect trot" goal that you push him too hard and end up going backwards. You are making such strides in his confidence and your confidence. The "perfect" will come or not, but it isn't something that you should rush. You are doing so great with him now! Enjoy!

  4. He'll get there. His hind end needs time to build up muscles to support his front end. Have you had bodywork done on him? (I can't remember!) It seemed to work wonders for Denali (pre...well, you know.) Getting an extended trot out of a horse is an art I still can't manage 100% of the time. It's my next goal when I find a horse to ride.

    <3 ya!

  5. Yes, he's had bodywork and it DID help him out TONS. He will need another few sessions if I can't help him out (I have a video for some moves).
    I'm not wanting to rush him for any sort of perfect trot, just curious if there are exercises that will help him out as a whole...I love walking away! :)
    I think he's doing amazing too :)

  6. I'm not sure if he's ready yet, but going over ground rails or slightly raised cavaleitti (even at a walk) is SO good for the hind-end and core. And I'm sure more bodywork would be very beneficial (but I know it's $$$!).
    Have you had any X-rays done lately? It would be very interesting to compare recent ones to the X-rays you had done last fall. (Although, again, I know that's expensive!)

  7. I was also thinking about ground rails or cavaletti, if your vet/farrier gives the okay I think that will help him get stronger. It's so good that you are taking your time with him, that's really what he needs the most. He's looking better and better all the time!

  8. Oh yes, cavaletti's we did all summer long. At the walk only but they were on stands so about 6" off the ground. I think I may need to drag those out and keep doing them at the walk. Too nervous to do at a trot.
    I have not done xrays yet...I hate xrays and they scare me. Ignorance is bliss for now, but I've talked to Cliff (our Barefoot trimmer) and he's game to take Laz up to Dr. Bowker's facility in Spring per my BO's recommendation and compare xrays IF I can get old ones from vet.

  9. Yes, you can ALWAYS improve a horses trot. If you watch videos of a Grand Prix horse early in their career and then watch them later you will see their trot gets bigger over time. That is because riding with collection puts the horse really on their hind end, allowing them lots of shoulder and knee action up front. The stronger a horse gets the better their gaits should get. With Laz's injury I am not sure if he will ever be sound or not. I do not that if you ride him back to front as they say and he gets stronger and stronger his shoulders will swing more creating a more dramatic extension.

    Can I just say that I love that I can write this comment? I am so happy Laz is doing so well! Do you still need boots? Gen has been doing AMAZING bootless so he would be happy to send along a pair of SMBs or Pegasus boots to his cousin Laz. Just e-mail me if you want them.

  10. Kristen, you might want to look into the Hill Therapy exercise. Also, check your saddle for shoulder clearance. You can find a lot of info on correct saddle fit and Hill Therapy at parellisaddles.com (look under "download" for several, very informative print outs). Figure 8's are great to calm down a horse, because a. you are in charge of direction (which puts you in a leadership position), b. your horse moves more than you do (again puts you in a leadership position) and c. the horse can moves his feet and use up his adrenaline. Having a strong leader, will help your horse relax and feel safe!
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

    Petra Christensen
    Parelli 2Star Junior Instructor
    Parelli Central