Western Hunk

Western Hunk

SO THIS FINALLY HAPPENED.

Raglan is very clearly not a western pony, and yet…

LOOK AT HOW BEEFY HE IS.

It was fun riding western again! Maybe I’ll pick up a cheap western saddle eventually. 🤔

Outdoor Improvements

Outdoor Improvements

Last week when Raglan suddenly started squiggling around mid shoe job, my farrier sent me to fetch a stud chain. Usually I run it under his chin (showmanship style) or I wind it around the noseband of his halter so that it can’t flop around. My farrier, on the other hand, put it over his nose in a more traditional way.

Sometimes a good chain is the key to wrangling a beast ten times your size

A few days later, SundaeO and I decided to take advantage of some sunny weather and go out back. It’s been a while since I’ve taken Raglan out on the cross country course, so I put the stud chain over his nose, snapped a lunge line onto him, and off we went! Surprisingly enough, Raglan was a superstar. He gave me no attitude, outside of insisting that he needed his face in the grass at all times.

“no ma i can trot AND eat too, lemme get da grass”

Raglan hopped over the up/down bank and a couple of small logs without any problem.

Then we walked out farther, to where the tires are. The first time he trotted up to the tires he had a stop, but then his brain kicked into gear and he remembered that the tires were for jumping, too.

Yo Raglan the jumps are down there bro #noscopenohope

The day after that, I took Raglan out back under saddle. He was nothing short of awesome. I’m super pleased with how much his attitude has improved recently! I’m not sure how much of his new found obedience has to do with how I’m using the stud chain now and how much has to do with repeated exposure to the great outdoors…. but hopefully he stays this happy and chill.

Lesson Recap: Our First Bounce

Lesson Recap: Our First Bounce

Sunday morning Raglan and I had a #crashandburn moment. I hadn’t planned on jumping him, but another boarder had a couple jumps set up and she put one down to 2’0″ for me when she was done. We trotted our way up to it, but he was so busy listening to the ducks next door that his head wasn’t in the game and he slammed on the brakes, took a nosedive down towards the jump, and barely managed to scramble back onto his feet at the last second. I ended up sitting on his neck, but otherwise unscathed.

We made it over the jump eventually, but it definitely scuffed his confidence

The next day, TrainerM set up a bounce for our lesson. Raglan’s never been over a bounce. The first was a cross rail and the second was a little vertical, but despite the tiny sizes I had a feeling it would be a big challenge. Still, he warmed up nicely, and he popped over a lone vertical without trouble.

My gut wasn’t wrong, though. Raglan went over the first part, then brake-checked me at the second. My leg wasn’t forward enough and I got thrown over his shoulder. I swan dived straight towards the jump, but managed to kick free and land on my feet before my face could smash into the pole. We got a round of applause, then I knocked the jump over and forced Raglan the Cow to walk over the whole thing with me.

I didn’t get my unplanned dismount on video (booooo!), but TrainerM dropped parts of the jumps down and eventually Raglan figured out how to go over the bounce like a proper horse.

Afterwards I put Raglan on the lunge line and handed him over to TrainerM. We put the bounce up to two verticals and sent him over it riderless. It was a great experience for him! He got to figure out his feet without me there to pressure him. We even put the rails up a couple of holes and he did a great job bounding over them. I want to schedule a time with TrainerM to set up a grid for him to free jump one of these days!

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ohhhhh I DO LIKE DIS 😀

A post shared by Stephani & Raglan (@two.hearts.one.oxer) on

Because of how athletic and savvy Raglan is, it can be hard to remember that he’s really green over fences. There are so many things that he needs to experience before he’s a confirmed jumper. It’s important to follow my instincts and remember that it’s okay to put the jumps down and go back to the basics. It’s easier to set him up for success from the beginning than it is to rebuild his confidence after the fact!

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