So I was happily posting away on COTH the other day when someone was all, “dude. Need. Blog. Updates.” And I was like, “blog? what blog? Oh… THAT blog… oops!”
Needless to say things have been a bit busy lately. I’ve moved, my girth has expanded to an uncomfortable level, and I can’t walk like a normal person anymore. My horse is living the life out at the layup farm with the CANTER horses, scarfing as much grass as he can through his devilish grazing muzzle. I’ve had a trip home, a ridiculous number of doctor visits, and am really, really, missing riding. Especially the first rides on goofy TBs, which are my favorite rides of all.
Seeing as I haven’t been doing a lot directly with the horses, it’s sort of hard to update the blog. I will have some new horse pics and intros coming up, the recap of our annual visit to Maryland Million, and also my other favorite, success stories 🙂 First up is a nice Happy Ending Story about a horse purchased from our trainer listings. Unbridled Gold went through a couple sets of hands before landing with his current owner, but she had first seen and noticed him on CANTER’s site, before finding him (and liking him) in real life.
Here, in Jan’s own words, is the story of “Moose” and some pictures:
I found Unbridled Gold (aka Moose) first through CANTER Mid-Atlantic, when I was playing around with the idea of an OTTB. At the time, I just bookmarked his page, thinking he was cute and I liked his eye. A few weeks went by and I disregarded him since I’d seen some I thought would be a better fit.
Then, in May, I found a cute little OTTB, at that time called Mufasa, through an agent, who was selling him for a girl who’d found him but didn’t need him for anything, she just thought he was worth helping out. When I saw his registered name on his sale contract, I realized he was the same horse I’d seen on CANTER! Funny how things work out, isn’t it?
When I purchased him, he was not very trusting and was scared to have anyone near his backend. He didn’t like to be caught, in the field or in a stall, and generally tried to avoid people. Fly spray and grooming scared him (which was kinda funny, because NOTHING else did… ambulances, dogs, car horns, firecrackers, nothing!), and he wouldn’t let anyone near his right side. I gave him a little down time, about a week, and during that time we worked on ground manners, longed a little, and just started getting him to trust again. In that short amount of time he went from a scaredy cat to a total lovebug!
Undersaddle he was extraordinarily willing right off the bat, which was one of the main reasons I purchased him. He doesn’t ride “crooked” for the most part like a lot of OTTBs do, and was very good about picking up the correct lead on the flat and over fences. He’s a careful, but brave and scopey, jumper and almost always finds his own distances and adjusts himself. We did (and still do) have to work on his speed, since he will occasionally get a little quick, but he doesn’t try to bolt off or race other horses if we’re in a group.
Before I purchased Moose, I was a skeptic about Thoroughbreds, and more-so about my ability to handle one. I’d heard countless horror stories about the breed, and being young, I’d been written off by several people as “crazy” and “rushing into it,” when I said what I was getting into. I can say now, though, that the great George Morris was certainly right when he said, “The best of any breed is the Thoroughbred horse, and the best of that breed is better than any other breed.”
The immense heart and willingness Moose possesses is astounding, and the bond I have with him is like nothing else. He has more love and try than any other horse I’ve ever ridden, and I count myself lucky–blessed, really–to have him.
When I purchased him, I thought the name Unbridled Gold was kind of silly–I mean, he’s bay, not anything close to gold!–but, from where I stand now looking back, I think it was almost a foretelling of what he is now. He truly is gold, and I absolutely love every minute with him.
Jan reports that Moose is (obviously) a fantastic jumper with lots of potential to go over some pretty large obstacles. And, as of when we chatted last week, Moose is 2nd in the country in the New Event Horse standings despite only one show.