Cornelia is one of our two “foals”. You can’t really call them foals anymore because in June she will be 4 years old. Time to start her training.
She didn’t receive much of a training yet. For several reasons I didn’t do much with her which has not been very smart from me. These are the reasons why:
- First one is that because she had to grow I just left her in the field. We can catch her and put a halter on and for me that is the most important thing.
- Then she is mean. She has her mom’s character. Breeding her mom with a sire which had a 10 plus for character, and it is a sweetheart, didn’t help.
- She has also not much respect and thinks she is the boss over everybody, also her mom. We always have to keep an eye on her to be in time to put her back in place when she attempts a coop again.
- She thinks she can solve all her problems with kicking. No problem as long as you are at the front but getting to her back legs I have to do it with extreme cautiousness.
- She is also huge!! She is already taller than her mom. Her mom is 16.2 hands, her dad 17.2. She has her dads build.
- Last one and the most important reason is swollen joints of her back legs.
When she was 10 months old her joints in her back leg started to swell up. Weaning her slowly and taking her off the mothermilk didn’t help. There was not much more I could do to bring the swelling down. She was outside 24/7 so she could move around. She only got hay. Not more she needed. Supplying her with even more nutrients would mean she would even grow faster and that was the last thing she needed.
I used some essential oils on her to reduce the swelling and the pain but even that I could not use that much. Take away all the pain and she will overuse the joints and make it worse. The only option was to let her grow and hope for the best.
Now she is almost 4 and her legs look a lot better. The swelling is almost gone. So this summer I will start her training. Riding her I will postpone till next summer or even the summer after that. Joints of horses grow till they are 6 years old and starting to put extra unnecessary weight on them isn’t a great way to give them a long life.
I just start her with teaching her the basic commands. Learning to accept a saddle, bridle, blanket, etc. just anything on her back. Learning to stand still to be brushed and to clean her feet. Learn to follow me and accept me as her leader. That will take a summer for sure because it doesn’t look like she is one of the smartest horses around. But that is alright. I am not in a hurry.
Eventually she has to become my dressage horse. Time will learn.