Our two newest guys, Teak and Harlow, have now truly settled into life on the farm. It is wonderful to see them out with their new turn-out buddies, fattening up on all the grass and really relaxing into their new routine. The physical transformation that has taken place in only two months time is striking, and it is so exciting to see these boys’ new expressions: bright and curious.
Teak and Harlow have now had several weeks of light work in the roundpen and on the lunge line, and have taken walks around the farm in-hand. Both lucky boys have now had several massages, as we want to learn about any particular issues or sore spots they may have before we begin work under saddle. They absolutely loved their massages, and seemed to appreciate and enjoy the contact and attention. The good news is that both appear to be overall in good shape. Teak had some lingering soreness in his front feet, and as an x-ray showed no deeper issues, we had him shod upfront with pads to provide much-needed cushioning. He is looking nearly sound and much more comfortable now, so we have taken the next step of lunging him in a Western saddle. As he has clearly had some solid training in the past, we hope to soon begin taking him out for easy trailrides–both to build back his muscle tone and to remind him that riding is easy and fun.
Harlow is proving to be a very sweet boy, but he is not yet as confident as Teak and becomes a bit nervous when separated from his friends. Once he has a task to focus on, Harlow settles nicely- and we will continue to take it slowly with his training to help him understand that we will never push him too quickly or hard. As he is only 9 and had certainly been bounced around from the racetrack to various dealers, it’s not surprising that he would need extra time to fully settle into his new life. It is great to see Harlow snoozing in the field with his friends and steadily gaining weight. We will continue ground work with Harlow for now, and plan to soon introduce him to the joys of hacking out by ponying him behind a calm, steady pal.