Lets Just Talk About Everything

So after my post last week, I gave her some time off while I was home.  Got back to see her on Wednesday, and lo and behold, the mare looked normal again.  Now most of you are probably thinking, “Thats awesome Shelley, you should be super happy your mare is sound.”

But to that I say, should I be happy that she keeps having this weird issue?  Should I be happy she is sound now, only to have her potentially be unsound in a month or two of more work?

Let the vet know she looked good, with no sensitivity anywhere on her lower legs, and his response was to work her normally until she shows lameness again.  But not just shortness.  He wants her head bobbing.  LAME lame.  Now I understand that for him, he can’t diagnose something when its hard to see any lameness.  And even when shes short, its evenly short, on both fronts and only on concrete.  But to me, the horse owner, the one who loves the animal, its kind of nerve-wracking.  I don’t WANT to push her to a breaking point, and I don’t WANT her to be head bobbing.  I WANT her to be happy doing her job.  Dang it horse!

So since shes comfortable, and not showing any signs of distress with regard to her gaits, her back is another story, is back to business as usual. 

Gave her a quick walk/trot ride on Wednesday and she felt fine.   Good even.  But I was too nervous to push her so I kept it quick.

Thursday I couldn’t make it out to the barn so my trainer gave her a school on the flat.  Received a text saying she felt great, a bit strung out on her right lead (but I figured as much, especially since she’s been super cold backed recently).  But overall trainer said she felt awesome.  So yay!

Friday picked up a two week supply of Regumate to start Lib on to see if that gives her some relief.  Vet says I should see a change within two weeks, so if shows any signs of making a difference with regard to her comfort, I’ll get the big supply.  If I see no difference I’ll be taking her off of it and seeking other options, if there even are any.  Started her on it Saturday and thankfully she doesn’t seem to reject it entirely. 

Friday and Saturday had some great flat work schools.  Due to some ridiculous amount of rain we’ve had lately, our ring is flooded so I’ve been riding her out in our paddocks.  I’ve been working on a lot of shoulder-ins, leg yields and turns on the haunches/forehand.  Shes felt pretty awesome, so that makes me happy.  Today just had an easy ride since shes worked so hard the past couple of days, and I’ll have a lesson tomorrow morning. 

We’ve also been able to use a new barn toy the BO recently acquired.  Libby took to the Theraplate immediately.  Only been able to use it twice, so I’m not convinced yet that its actually worth the full 5k+, but we’ll see.

Onto another subject thats entirely different.  As most of you may know, at the end of August I move back in with my parents down in South Florida.  So that of course means that I need a new place for Libby.  In the beginning of my search, I turned up nothing, especially since the area I used to ride in has turned over so many barns and trainers in the past couple of years, I know absolutely no one left in the area.  Add to that that my old trainer moved to Welly world, and while I would never go back to him, his prices are now on par with Wellington prices AKA through the roof.

But through my contacts in the area, I’ve found two places that are options. 

Option 1:  Beautiful property, and great care, but a bit farther then Option 2.  Has trainer on property, whose young, but I’ve only heard glowing reviews about him from EVERYONE I’ve asked.  And I mean everyone.  Not one single person has had anything ill to say about him which is good.  Even his old boss, another trainer in the area that he was a rider for, had good things to say about him.

He’s been in this facility for two years, and doesn’t have any plans to move.  The facility holds some shows on property, which sounds fun, but they also go to all the major shows in Florida and surrounding states.  But that being said he doesn’t require anyone to show.  They have grooms if needed, but I wouldn’t use them.  Cheaper board then the other facility, and hes on property so I wouldn’t need to haul Libby anywhere to get lessons.

Paddocks are small and most have grass.  Spoke with him about night turnout, and he said thats fine, but that most of their horses go out for a couple of hours during the day.  Any food and grain is fine.

Like I said before facility is gorgeous.  Almost 200+ acres, with two full sized riding rings with new footing and complete show quality courses.  Barn is beautiful with European style stalls and deeply bedded stalls.  Fans in each stall and barn is nice and breezy.  Professional staff on property at all times. Air conditioned tack room, bathroom, and lots of storage.

Option 2:  Newly renovated facility, that will be really nice when all the updates are complete.  Small property but well thought out. Sixteen stall barn with airy wooden stalls, fans in each stall.  Well bedded but not nearly as deep as Option 1.  Owned by a horsey mom and daughter pair, who were fed up with the boarding options in the area, so they decided to buy their own.  While they own it, they are fully giving the reins to the manager who lives on property, whose actually a friend of mine that I went to high school with.

Paddocks are small, but each horse gets their own paddock that won’t be used by another horse, so they can get turned out whenever the horse needs.  Brand new GTI footing ring with a full course purchased from WEF.  Any grain/hay is fine.  No trainer on property, but manager friend has multiple trainer friends that shes hoping will either come in or that we can ship too.  Including trainer from Option 1.  Two people have trailers on the property for lessons and emergencies.  

Closer to me by like 5 minutes, but way more expensive.

Now if you had asked me three days ago which one I was leaning towards, I would have told you Option 2.  Even though its more expensive, its closer, and I don’t know a lot about the trainer from Option 1 so I was a bit nervous about moving to him, even though I’d heard such good things.  But about three nights ago, I got a call from my best friend who was still with my old trainer in Welly.  She told me pretty much everyone had had enough of said trainer, and had packed up the horses and moved.  To where you might ask?

Yup, they ALL moved to Option 1.

So you see my dilemma.  One of the girls has been there a good two weeks now and has nothing but great things to say about him.  Even told me the trainer has already helped her make major strides with her adorable problem horse.  But this is the honeymoon period so who knows what they’ll say in a month or two.  So as you can tell I’m conflicted. 

Since I’m the most indecisive person ever I need your help!!  So bloggers, what would you do?


9 thoughts on “Lets Just Talk About Everything

  1. I say definitely Option 1 🙂 Five extra minutes isn't far at all, it's cheaper, and entirely positive reviews in the horse world is so rare. Plus, option 2 says they have options for trainers, but what if it takes a little while to get a lesson schedule established? Or think of those days where you get to the barn and just really wish you could have a lesson/set of eyes on your horse. Or the option of trainer rides if you can't make it that day. Just my thoughts 🙂


  2. 5 minutes in the grand scheme of things isn't that much. Depending on the cost that would make the choice for me. If trainer 1 is on site and is respectable and the the board is less that's a no brainer. No hauling out, less board? Seems good to me. When do you have to decide?


  3. Thats what I'm leaning towards as well. I'm hopefully going to do the drive this weekend when I'm home to see how close it is, but other then that… Option 1 it is!


  4. Until the middle of July I think. I'll be moving her the first week of August, so I need to let them know. I think, if were still going, they'll just be taking Libby back with them.


  5. Option 1, definitely! Better bedding, trainer on-site, an extra 5 minutes away isn't a big deal at all, and apparently everyone loves it so much that they all moved there. I vote for Option 1 🙂


  6. I'm a bit of a penny pincher as it is, but I love the idea of boarding somewhere that hosts shows. Cuts down on shipping and other show fees. So I guess I'm putting my vote on Option 1! Either one sounds like a great way to go though.


  7. If I were going to a place with no trainer I would expect to be paying a lot less, honestly. I think if I were just shipping out for lessons I would not expect to pay show barn prices for board nor would I want/need a facility that could house a show barn. Since you still want to show/lesson, I would go with option 1 as well. Can you at least take a couple lessons with the trainer on another horse to decide if you like his style? I would also show up when he is schooling horses and watch him.


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