12 September 2016

Horse Fair

How has it already been more than two months since Horse Fair?!  I'm woefully behind in sharing updates, but I will be working to remedy that as well as attempting - yet again - to get back into the habit of updating/journaling/etc on a regular basis.  Maybe this time I will be successful. Only time will tell!

All the photos from fair can be found on my Facebook page in this album

We missed Scout so much during fair.  Or at least I did.  Carus did have working with DJ to distract her. She did break down during senior night where they were reading speeches written by the graduating seniors, who wouldn't be back the next year, and a couple of those kids thanked their first horses as being the reason they fell in love with horses. It hit her right in the feels and she said that she worries he won't make it to her senior night. I've reassured her that 4 years isn't that far off and he's still doing well so we can be hopeful.  She's planned out how he will be the one that takes her into the arena for senior night - walking together or riding. I hope that she gets that.

If you missed it - Scout is now retired from shows (mostly).  He was diagnosed, officially, June 1st with sidebone (click here for Google search for sidebone where you can find all sorts of info if interested) in his left front foot.  He's on daily pain management as well as some joint supplements and he got a whole month off.  When his month was up and I let Carus ride him at a slow walk around the arena for 10 minutes I held my breath hoping so hard that it wouldn't cause him pain and make him limp again.

It didn’t.  They can walk and trot and play together again, and he really tears it up around the pasture with Dusty! Yay! 

For Fair, Carus was able to borrow DJ, her 4H leader's horse, a 25-year-old Quarab (Quarter horse and Arabian horse cross) who was a drill horse for many years.  He likes to go-go-go and can do so all day long and then some.  Carus worked hard for the 2 months leading up to Fair to get used to him, him used to her, and keep him calm and listening for the slow work that would be required of them for fair.

We are so proud with how Carus handled herself during fair in so many ways, but first I'll explain how so with DJ.

DJ is what one would call a hot horse.  He likes to go and go fast because that is what he was trained to do.  Carus would take him into the arena and ask him to stand still for a moment and he didn't understand why because usually when he got into an arena he would be moving until he left that arena.  She still stuck it out, kept her patience, and tried her best.  She never left one of her classes defeated by a less than perfect outcome. After her trail class where he did a bunch of pawing at the ground, trying to run off course, and even a little crow-hop, she left the arena laughing and said, "Well, that could've gone better."  She didn’t get any blue ribbons this year, but still was very happy with her efforts and so glad to have the opportunity to work with this adorable little energizer bunny horse. DJ taught her quite a bit in their 2 months together.

This was also our first year with the new 4H group as last year's group disbanded.  Carus was the only member this year with prior 4H Horse experience.  The other two members where younger than Carus, in their first year of 4H, and in their first year of showing horses.  (There was a fourth member, but she ended up dropping out mid year.)  Carus was supportive of them, a great leader to them, and helped them at a drop of a hat without complaint (mostly) even though we got close to 100 degree temps (again) and the days were long and busy, occasionally feeling like they were never-ending. 

4H is about to start up again this year, and Carus has a few goals to work towards.  She hopes to show Bailey the mini-donkey this year, show a horse (which is currently planned to be Dusty if Dusty can handle it), become a better rider, maybe show in some English classes, and she wants to earn the most points.

(Each horse 4H member is required to earn 100 points to be allowed to participate in Horse Fair. They get those points by participating in 4H activities, other horse shows, educational clinics and competitions, and community service/volunteer work.  Last year the winner got 470ish points and Carus wants to get 500 at least.  Since we have a limited number of shows we can attend - which does limit her earning ability a smidge - this can be a bit of a challenge, but we'll try.)

More to come. . . 

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