Emma

A forum for discussion of training in dressage
demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Tue Jul 25, 2017 1:25 pm

I'm so glad others are enjoying Emma's progress! It is slow, for sure, but i am still hopeful that she will let me enjoy some of the more advanced dressage on her.

The Texas summer is hard on her. She has bug/fly allergies and rubs her mane, tail and ears. The heat/humidity/strong sun makes the itching worse. Last summer I kept her in her stall/paddock situation more and with the auto flysprayer and fans, she seemed to do better. This summer, however, I am giving her 24/7 access to her 1 acre pasture in hopes that the movement will help her joints. She does roam around a lot and having my other horses on two sides keeps her busy. I tried to keep an ear bonnet on her but she takes it off. I do fly spray her and keep her pasture mowed short to help keep the bugs down. I keep the poop picked up every single day. I also keep her very clean and roach her mane. I put salve on the hot spots, mostly on her crest and top of her tail. She wouldn't let me near her ears so I've had the vet out a few time to tranquilize her and medicate the ears. The good news is that I've been working on getting the ears touchable and she is much better about it. By next summer she may be toughened up to the climate.

By September the weather is usually much better and I'll start the hill work with her again.

piedmontfields
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Re: Emma

Postby piedmontfields » Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:05 am

You have a tough climate. A new boarder recently moved in from Houston area. During one of our hottest weeks of the year, I pointed out that this is about as bad as it gets here in summer. She laughed and said It feels delightful! Good luck to Emma in the remaining month of hard summer.

For a fly mask with (big) ears that stays on, I am a fan of the Smartpak Classic Fly Mask. It is even on sale now:
https://www.smartpakequine.com/pt/smart ... mask-11109

Other fly masks can be removed by Emi in minutes. This one stays on 95% of the time. And did I mention it accommodates big ears?!

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:28 pm

Thanks for the fly mask suggestion, Piedmont. It looks perfect so I just ordered it. She does have a pretty large pair of ears!!

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Fri Aug 11, 2017 3:29 pm

flying nun.jpg
flying nun.jpg (43.84 KiB) Viewed 3331 times


Emma's SmartPak fly mask! She removed it in less than 24 hours. The other masks she would just hook on the fence to remove, but this one she had to wedge her head between two big tree branches to pull off. I am glad to know how clever she is because when I start training her again, it will help me to see her from a different perspective.

Really, perspective is part of good dressage training. I am using this time off to work on the friendship perspective. She shows some Thoroughbred mare tendencies, some of which are very nice qualities. One is that she has a keen awareness her surroundings and is becoming very interactive with me, and DH, too. She has access to a one plus acre pasture 24/7 and although she spends a lot of her time outside, the minute I, or DH come into the barn, she comes into her stall to see what's up. Maybe she'll get a cookie. She is happy with just a minute of hand scratching, too. She has been very protective of her ears since the bug problem started but after showing her that I just want to help her with her ear problem (cleaning out the scabs, putting on soothing ointment, inspecting them, etc.,) she is now letting me handling them. She gives me the eye the whole time, and is ready to pull away in an instant, but she KNOWS that my intention is for her benefit. When I finish, she lets out a sigh, and gets a soft look in her eye. We are communicating.

So, when I start training again, I look forward to better communication due to our closer bond.

piedmontfields
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Re: Emma

Postby piedmontfields » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:47 pm

Awesome picture. I impressed by Emma's stripping talents. Your low pressure time together this summer sounds very fruitful.

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:37 am

Emma is on hold. She is not happy with the sweet itch and the hot weather makes it worse. She is not an easy mare for me to figure out training wise, so I not going to start working her again until she shows a big improvement in the sweet itch. She is just too fussy right now to even think about getting any good work done.
Image

Also a pic of Emma and Rocky together. Rocky is in front. I love them both dearly, but Emma is so much easier to keep balanced with her weight shifted back. I am not complaining! I am glad I have Rocky to ride while I wait for Emma.
Image

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:39 am

and her tail... it use to be so full and luxurious. sorry for such a large photo.
Image

Silverado
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Re: Emma

Postby Silverado » Mon Sep 04, 2017 2:06 am

I really enjoy reading about your journey with Emma!

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Mon Sep 04, 2017 12:48 pm

I'm so glad you enjoy it, Silverado!

calvin
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Re: Emma

Postby calvin » Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:43 pm

OOOOOOH - thank you SO MUCH for posting the ear photo. Here I am, far north, and it's been a pretty good summer but this year and last year, my horse developed that exact ear "look". I thought it was just bug bites, followed by scratching - but it looks terrible and bothers him. Thank you for pointing out what this really is! He will NOT let me deal with his ears (never has) without a twitch, so until the weather cools, I guess we shall just wait this out. Poor Emma!!

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Mon Sep 04, 2017 6:40 pm

I'm glad the picture helped. I am not sure what it is, and may be a combination of things. Check out the veterinary forum under the sweet itch thread that Silverado started. Lots of good information over there.

calvin
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Re: Emma

Postby calvin » Mon Sep 04, 2017 7:06 pm

Shall do - and thanks again. Love Emma's progression (I know it has been side-tracked by weather, bugs etc. recently) - but her lovely face just makes you melt. Her feet are so improved, and soon I am sure she will be feeling MUCH better.

piedmontfields
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Re: Emma

Postby piedmontfields » Wed Sep 06, 2017 12:40 am

Oooh, I am just writing from Emi's POV (and mine) to say "poor poor Emma ears!". That must be awful for her.

In the meantime, Emi just continues to wound herself on blunt objects. I think she is itchy and misjudges. Tonight, she had a chunk out of a cheek. Very tidy work, but not necessary my mare! It is possible she had help, but she is in solo turnout and not inclined to lean over the fence to her neighbors. At least the boo boos are minor and easily healed.

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:37 pm

Emma had her teeth floated by the vet dentist Tuesday. Her mouth was in very good condition. I asked the vet what he thought about the double-double dosing of ivermectin for neck thread worms and he was against it (my regular vets were also against it but I wanted another opinion). He did however give me a prescription salve that he said is practically a magic potion! He has had very good success with it, especially for the ears, which is Emma’s biggest problem.

So this year I am armed to the hilt against the sweet itch/NTW invasion. I have a new fly sheet, two new fly masks with ears, another set of fly leggings, the new prescription salve, Ecovet fly spray (which I used last year and this stuff is super), special shampoo, and a no-itch oral supplement (in addition to Farrier’s formula which is super for skin and coat, plus 1/4 cup canola oil). I have a turnout plan that, while labor intensive for me!, I hope will minimize the exposure to culicoides and any other flies or bugs. Also, I am treating her with ivermectin every two months.

I have started her back to work with in hand stuff.

My dressage progress is slow even though I have two horses...

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:53 am

Image

Emma is ready for fly season. It has already started here in Texas. She will be on limited turnout, 11 am to 4pm. I also ordered a fly sheet with a neck cover which she will wear for turnout.

She took a long time to recover from the sweet itch last year. By January of this year she had finally stopped fussing about her ears, her mane and tail started to grow back and I started light in hand work with her. We were doing just twice a week but last week I did three times, adding Parelli NH stuff. I am now going to try for 4-5 times a week.

Emma will be 15 years old this year. She is in good shape for her age and since she already knows dressage thru PSG, I am still hopeful that she will get back to that level again...I have to think positive.

piedmontfields
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Re: Emma

Postby piedmontfields » Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:02 pm

Emma looks very smart in her kit! I am hopeful for you and her, too.

We have only put fly nets on once so far in 2018. It was back to 50s and brisk today. Colder later this week. Miss Em is in full season silly-ness, though.

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StraightForward
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Re: Emma

Postby StraightForward » Mon Mar 05, 2018 4:17 pm

Cute! Miss Pickle has the exact same sheet. I hope Emma is able to stay more comfortable this year.
The UDBB member known as AQHA Hunter

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Fri Apr 06, 2018 1:52 pm

So a month ago I found Ashley, a talented 21 yr old NH trainer, (she graduated from Clinton Anderson's course and then spent a year with him). I hired her to work with our old gelding who has serious vision problems. I was so impressed with how she handled him that I asked her to try Emma.

I've gotten to know this young lady a bit and yesterday when we were on a trail ride we had a relaxed talk. She said she is working on a personal project that requires discipline and her reward to herself will be "English" lessons! I asked her what she thought about dressage and she said has always wanted to learn it. We talked quite a bit about it and I decided to offer her Emma if she would like to take lessons with my trainer. She said she'd love to! She is a very natural rider with long legs and a soft way with horses. I am thrilled. I haven't even asked my trainer if she can take another student and Ashley wants to work with Emma some more before she has a lesson, so...we'll see. This would be so good for Emma.

I'll ask Ashley next week if I can post a vid of her and Emma on this forum. Emma, who was terrified of whips now stands, untied, while Ashley swings a whistling dressage whip all around her. Emma loves the attention and seems quite proud of herself.

kande50
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Re: Emma

Postby kande50 » Fri Apr 06, 2018 4:36 pm

demi wrote:So a month ago I found Ashley, a talented 21 yr old NH trainer,


Fantastic! Sounds like a win-win all around. Looking forward to pix.

demi
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Re: Emma

Postby demi » Thu Apr 26, 2018 2:18 pm

Emma’s sweet itch is under control so far this year even tho we are having a terrible fly season already. She gets turnout for 4-5 hours a day with her mask, leg shields, flysheet and Ecovet spray. HOWEVER, I have decided to retire her from riding. Tough decision for me but she is really happy as a big pet and I don’t think she minds not working in the least. I know very little of her history and at 15 yrs old, she is still a “lot of horse”. I am afraid that if I continue to ride her I may get hurt. I thought it would be good to let the young trainer ride her but that turned out to be more money and time then I care to spend.

Emma is happy and that’s the most important thing to me.

piedmontfields
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Re: Emma

Postby piedmontfields » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:45 pm

I'm glad Emma is much more comfortable this year. She is lucky to have you as her person and caretaker.

Ryeissa
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Re: Emma

Postby Ryeissa » Thu Apr 26, 2018 8:04 pm

Yes, happiness is so important! thanks for sharing your journey with us.


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