Lots of Updates!

I felt like running up and down the aisleway of the barn chanting, "He's sound, sound, sound, sound, SOUND!" But staying silent and a little more sedate didn't make me less ecstatic! During the last month, Guinness and I have been seeing steady improvements and, as witnessed in our last update, lots of snow! It turns out that 23" of snow is brilliant for conditioning, and the big man is starting to lose his flabby chub.

Unfortunately, gaining muscle and being more active seems to be causing and additional weight loss. This means I can again see ribs and a little topline. Of course, ripping apart his turnout blanket and pulling off all the straps so that it is completely destroyed isn't helping much. I haven't noticed him getting cold, but I'm sure that's another factor. I know everyone and their mother seems to deal with the TB weight issue, but seriously! At some point I'm worried I'm driving myself crazy and he is improving from his wormy-ness, but I'm only seeing the negative. Either way, it won't hurt him to increase his feed some.

After looking around for a good option that will keep him rather low-energy, I've decided to add beet pulp. I like the fiber content and the way it meshes with his grain. So far he's liking it quite a bit, though the jury is still out on whether or not he'll gain on it.

As for our riding, it has been getting better with each day. We cantered for the first time last week, and the smile on my face was ridiculous! He felt so good he was taking little liberties (read: throwing up his back legs and wanting to really go), and I was feeling good too and let him. Our major goal right now is to get our connection back. He's chewed a hole in his bit, and I have been looking around for one he and I both get along with. As he is such a delicate butterfly when it comes to touching contact, whatever I needed had to be super light. Plus, with Christian learning to ride I wanted it to be something that could take some beginner hands on it. I ended up with this eggbutt oval double jointed snaffle. Example pictured below:

So far, the big guy's been going really well in it. I'll keep you posted on his transition from rubber to the grown up world of stainless steel.

Now, finding a new blanket has been my goal for the last week. I'm so sick of looking at the word denier, I could shoot myself. Right now, I think this blanket is the best deal I've found. But, my loyalty to Smartpak is going to win out. Hello ... SmartBlue Thinsulate? Oh man. Sure it doesn't match a thing I wear, but I will always pay more for a quality brand with excellent customer service. ALWAYS.

Tomorrow's another ride in the snow and some work in the indoor. I'm a little sick of it, but our basics are improving and we get to try the new bit. Hopefully there will be photos!