Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sundays at the Stable ~ first meeting

Meet my friend Jo as she meets Danny Boy.

We have agreed to meet on Sundays, after church, for a Stable day of grooming/ cleaning/ maintenance... and eventually riding!
She and I have known each other for years ( like 22) and though she has not spoken much about her early days of  horse back riding ere now...she began to talk more & ask me questions about doing so and lessons.
 Her interest peaked after her good friend got a horse recently. So, I offered to give her a start and hand her off to a professional when ever she needed .
I have always wanted to offer some sweet horsey days- life- relief- to someone else...but some of the stable's would not allow me to share the fun...too paranoid, or a trainer thought I was infringing their territory. 
 My friend has signed the release and I am being very careful, trying to help her learn good judgment and proper care around these rather large, and sometimes, unpredictable equine animals. I have worked with this Horse  in particular, for a year now.

She began by allowing the stress of the week to transfer out...touching Danny's hide...while His apparent non- stressed lifestyle of rolling in the mud and hay, equally transferred on over to JO!

She groomed and groomed...creating much dust!
 I taught her the Pony club method of cleaning your brushes as you groom the horse. 
Brush with the stronger curry first, then brush the same area with the softer brush. As you do so, use the stronger curry on the  second brush itself inbetween, effectively cleaning it too...and begin again.
That way you don't keep transferring the dirt  right back onto the horse, and end up with a cleaner brush as well. 
One of these Sundays...we'll go ahead and wash the entire brush collection too.

After we got the mud and dirt off much as we could- with out a bath that is...we went on outside to wash his mane and tail...they were quite encrusted. He has more mane and tail than any horse I know!

Now, I must tell you that this horse was freaked out last year by just the sight of the hose...let alone turning the water on! His owner and I worked and worked with him...firstly by having the hose around all the time, then turning it on and just standing there, till he calmed down. He eventually allowed us to wash his feet and then legs and, as the weather has gotten nicer and I have been riding him...I thought to use a treat and my own version of the clicker(my mouth noise) and he instantly perks up and forgets to be afraid!

Though...he loves treats soo much- he is wayyyy to mouthy! So less treats and more praise now works well too.
I did his feet acclimate him to the water..then Jo took over, as I held him.
 I advised her to be aware of his eye and body stance. Also being careful of the drips..sometimes drips are bothersome and stomping or a random kick, I have seen...even with my mare. I told her to stay close to the as a  leg at full speed, would not get her if they did kick.. just the  foiled, less lethal coiled version.

Awe, he put his neck down for her!

He frequently looked around to check in with her too...I love this horse!

She moved slowly and carefully back to his tail~

 He moved- not an inch...good Dan man.

Then the rinsing..he was excellent for both the mane and tail for Jo~

She then took him back into the barn for a comb out...I told her how vital it was that she use a bit of conditioner first...then a LARGE and WIDE toothed comb, starting at the bottom. Having gone to beauty school( where we met some 22 years ago)...she got it. The goal-no hair loss- by breakage! 
That took her awhile! I was tending to my mare and also unhooking the trailer from a ride my PBO went on the day before.

The finished product was a very happy Danny Boy and equally satisfied Jo! 

After they both looked on for a time...we set him free to roll again..but he  seemed to honor Jo and just tried to graze some sparsely sprouting foliage! 

Until next Sunday....dreaming of horses and the charm they have in our hearts~ Sleep and dream well Jo!
Danny Boy awaits to help unlock hidden treasures of the soul~


  1. This is such a wonderful post. Doesn't it make you feel good sharing the feeling you have when you get to be around horses with others who do not know the privilege?

  2. Thanks sweet Sydney! YES-Resoundingly so. I had more fun last Sunday and then making this post up...Today is round 2 and I am excited!

  3. What a lovely thing for you to do! Your friend is going to discover the secret power of living in the moment. It will be a solace for her even when she can't be around the horse. They have so much to teach us.

  4. Kacy, great post! How kind of you to share such great horsey info with your friend. Doesn't it just make your heart sing to share your knowledge and love of horses with others?
    What a sweet friend you are!
    Jane and Gilly

  5. What a wonderful friend you are, Kacy! (I already knew that!)
    You are sharing an amazing world.
    Danny reminds me of Pie. Pie is frightened of water and the hose, but now, it seems, that Danny isn't. Good boy, Danny. Sovereign loves water so his bath should be fine. Pie is going to need some quiet lessons before actual bathing takes place! I hope I can get Pie to be as good about water as you got Danny to be.

  6. Way to lucky is Jo to have you for a friend to teach her patiently!! :)

  7. Horses are the purest of therapy. If I get around one and start to groom a bit, my blood pressure goes clear down to the ground. Any animal does that but horses have something else that was God-given. Wish I could come over on Sunday afternoons.

  8. Even I am feeling more relaxed reading this post. Lots of care and lots of love in these words and photos!

    Nice visiting with you!
    Kindly, ldh

  9. Lovely series of photos and descriptions - your friend seems very wise, and was able to reassure and comfort the horse - just wonderful!

  10. No better gift than you can give than Horse Therapy for the soul...

  11. They seem to be a good match, what a special boy Danny is. Lucky you all get to share in the joy!

  12. what a great way for you to pass on the gift of horses! It must be very rewarding with the warm fuzzy feel good feelings, good for you, good for Jo and good for Danny Boy.

  13. Sharing horse time is such a wonderful gift to give. Wish your place was a little more rational about it!

    Thank you so much for your sweet and supportive comments on my blog. It helps to know I'm on the right track!

  14. Wow! How wonderful that you get the opportunity to treat someone else to some wonderful horsey time. There's just nothing else like it. You describe it so well...I'm sure she was in heaven. Awesome. :)

  15. Awww, you are such a very special friend to share these wonderful horsie moments with. And Danny boy is a wonderful horse for being patient and kind with your trusting friend, too.

    Your photos captured the moments beautifully, Kacykins. I enjoyed this post very much.

    I wonder how Apache will react to the water hose. I can't imagine that she'd a bath in years with her past neglect. She tries to trust and open up, but I know it is scary for her. It will just take time and much patience, I think.


  16. Danny is such a beautiful sweet boy! And thank you for sharing horses with another person - that's how I got into horses, just a few years ago. A friend let me come out to her barn on Sundays and groom her mare and ride and graze and oh! it was wonderful :)

  17. great post kacy!

    you totally inspired me and baasha had his spa day today, minus the bath cuz it's too cold. but his tail got washed twice and it looks like new.

    then the trimming of the hooves took a while, that is exhausting!

    the face had to be curried with one of those face curries and then more and more hair was flying off and i was pulling it off by the handful and he was getting pretty annoyed, giving me that look, "please, stop!"

    then i took him out for a graze on our lawn and then after scrubbing the feet (frogs) he got to go out to pasture. boy is he done with me!

    but he looks much better. he's got summer coat on his neck and chest and hips. still waiting on the rest.

    thanks for the inspiration!

  18. remove dirt from horse and apply to person, a perfect cure for many ills!!

  19. I did a quick once over with the body brush today on all the horses. The winter hair is still coming off of them.

  20. What a great post. I need to mention that I really enjoy all the pictures you put on your blog, you're so artistic!

  21. I enjoyed this lovely story about making a new friend. I felt calm and happy just following along.


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