My riding history spans twenty years and a few continents, and there have been many horse and human influences over that time. Somehow it’s brought me here: an aspiring eventer who owns an injured-but-recovering-I-hope senior pony and leases a gigantic green Thoroughbred gelding with two left hooves and a heart of gold.
Domino is the pony. He’s been a part of my life since late 2007. He is a 20 year old 14.2-hand grade pinto gelding, and also the best pony on the planet as far as I’m concerned. We started out in Virginia, spent a few years in Ohio, and are now back in Maryland. Domino really deserves the majority of the credit for making me a confident rider and horse person. And also for finding me the most awesome friends ever, and helping me be successful in school, and lessening my mental health issues, and generally making me a better human being.
We started to really focus on eventing together in 2012, and – with the help of my outstanding trainer – he was fantastic.
After a year learning the ropes at beginner-novice and putting in a lot of work with our dressage, we set a goal to move up to novice in 2014. Horses never let things go according to plan. In February, Domino came up mildly lame during one of our lessons. We thought abscess or bruise, but after a month of soaking and wrapping and no improvement, the vet was called in. Sticking to the theme of making sure it’s never too easy, Domino did not change with flexion tests, did not respond to hoof testers, and had clean x-rays. Ultimately, the issue blocked out in his heel. Bute and lots of rest didn’t help, and I got a second vet involved. Finally, we settled on the consensus that it was a tendon problem: shockwave therapy, acupuncture, a tendon/ligament supplement, and more rest, followed by slow rehab.
And that’s where we are now: slowly rehabbing. It’s been complicated and frustrating, but we’re getting there. My hope is that he’ll come back well enough to at least continue hacking and training in dressage.
In the meantime, I started to miss riding with goals and training and competing. In August of 2014, I began leasing Tebow, who is Domino’s physical polar opposite. Really. He is a five year old 17-hand gray Thoroughbred gelding who the aforementioned outstanding trainer had been bringing along. This horse is unbelievably genuine and honest. There is not a mean or tricky bone in his body. I have just been riding Domino for so long that it’s been great to work with a different horse with different buttons and quirks. We’re just starting out together, but so far I’m enjoying him a lot.
I have started this blog as a place for me to track and share my thoughts and progress and setbacks and life in general with these delightful animals. Thanks for checking it out!