So I (a) found my password and (b) have something to talk about.

The damn horse is FINALLY SOUND AGAIN and BACK IN WORK.  I am stunned.  I had sort of resigned myself to the idea that it was only a matter of time before he headed to Paradigm Farm and walked around for the next 25 years or so being shiny and begging for cookies.  But no, completely ignoring him all summer except for turning him out daily seemed to be the magic cure.  He’s fine now.  He flex tested fine.  His x-rays are fine.  I’m also super happy that his feet look like they used to again after a year of barefoot.  I am far from being a barefoot-only person, but in this case, this horse needed to be barefoot so that his feet could regain their natural shape.  My vet swears she has some farrier suggestions for me that won’t screw him up, so I’m going to put some front shoes back on him now so that we can trail ride. It’s pretty rocky here and I don’t see the Princess being able to hack it barefoot.  I have Cavallo boots but they always seem to cause rubs – any thoughts on that from those of you who use them?  At any rate, I’m beyond ecstatic that I can ride him again, because he really is one of the best darn things I’ve ever sat on in my life.

My other piece of exciting news is that his first son, Bullwinkle (aka Caddis Cool Dorado) is under saddle!  Bullwinkle was an oops from a night of freedom the Big Yellow Money Vacuum enjoyed the year before I purchased him.  He turned three in May and his first ride was yesterday.  The trainer reported no spook or buck, acted like he’d done it a million times.  I said, yeah, chip off the old block for sure.  Conformationally, he has a better hip than his sire, but a worse neck.  Sort of what I expected from looking at the dam.

That’s Bullwinkle, above.  I’ll have to add a picture of the dam, Ima Cool Success, later, but basically he has her conformation with the Big Yellow Money Vacuum’s color.  She is a really calm mare, too, although no one will ever know how she would have ridden as she got hurt young and was unsound ever since.  The nice thing about having a better hip and worse neck  is that you can’t change a hip that much, but you can change a neck a lot – or the appearance of a neck – with work.    Then there are things you can’t change at all, like the shoulder, which thank heavens is pretty darn nice.  I suspect he’ll be as much of a couch to ride as his dad.  You can sit the BYMV’s fast trot without even trying, a big plus for people like me with crappy, chronic lower back pain!

So that is about the update for now…Thanks for all the messages about missing my writing on the Fuglyblog. I will probably write some guest blogs. I have a topic right now I’m dying to attack – trainers thinking the client horses are THEIR horses and forgetting those horses HAVE an owner who ultimately gets to make all the decisions about the horse.  That’ll be a lively one, won’t it?  😉




Published in: on September 9, 2011 at 5:28 pm  Comments (19)  

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  1. YAY!!! The blogess rises! 🙂 I love how happily you have termed the VLC a BYMV. If the shoe fits, hey?

    I can’t WAIT for updates on the big gomer. I hope he does well.

  2. Yay fugs! are you rethinking showing him, then?

    • Yes, LOL.

      I swear it’s like what they say about childbirth…the pain has faded (well, the financial pain, LOL!) and I finally got his win pic from ABRA World (I will scan and post, though it’s scary because I was about 18 pounds heavier than I am now, ha ha) and I’m like…oh maybe we’ll just throw another season into him.

      I definitely do not think he should do any WP again…I just think it was too physically hard for a big guy like him. If he goes back, he’ll go hunt seat only. Maybe trail, just because he was good at it…well, unless there was a HAY obstacle!

  3. Yay! And maybe someday we will see more VLCs? IF he earns them. 😉

    Oh! And I had my very first ever lesson Tuesday! My friend/coach put me on her “beginner” horse, the lazy Percheron mare whom the rider has to work at getting to listen. It was fun, and she said I did surprisingly well! 😀 My next lesson is Friday, and my first walk-trot show will be on October 1st. 😀 She’s having me learn Western, so she gets to “mold” me. 😉

    • Okay, guess not. 😛 😉 Still, great to have you back. Can’t wait for the next update!


  4. Oh I’m so thrilled you found your password and posted! I was nostalgically wandering through the internet wondering how your progress was with the big ol’ yellow school bus of studness and missing your snarkiness on fugly. Many sympathies lately, as I’m building the mental fortitude to pop on a 10 year old yellow saddlebred stallions back. He has stunning color and comfortation, but has only been lightly backed. Should be fun!

  5. Well, here I go out of the closet. Long time follower of the other blog, and I happened to swing by this one to reminisce, only to find that you were posting an update! It’s funny, I just saw a neat post about a mustang stallion called Padre, and it reminded me of your VLC, and the fact that stallions CAN be used and loved for more than breeding.
    I wish I could give you advice on the hoof boots, but unfortunately I’ve never used them– it’s a rather large outlay of money on the off chance that they ‘might’ fit, and most of the businesses that sell them around here are pretty sticky about fitting horses into them– I suppose they don’t want to risk ANY wear on the boots. Maybe I should open up a ‘boot fitting’ business?

    I think pasture rest is frequently the best single way to fix those pesky mystery lamenesses, and I like that you are going back into showing but avoiding the western pleasure part– I always did feel bad for the really big horses in those classes.

    As for trainers and owners, I guess we will never fix that basic problem– if the trainer is in it to make money, then they are going to try to get their way. If the owner wants a winner, then they are going to frequently turn a blind eye to the reality of their horse (“Ma’am, have you considered training him for saddleseat?”). The best relationships are a balance of a trainer who is frank about the horse’s abilities and the trainer’s goals, and owners who listen to the trainer, and then express their wants and desires just as frankly. With the little bit of training I’ve done, that has always resulted in the best horse and best trainer/owner relationship.

    Long live the VLC!

  6. The story I want to blog is about a trainer who actually thinks HE is in charge…like he has, on more than one occasion, resisted the owner trying to remove the horse from the premises. In one case, the cops had to be called to get the horses out. I mean, really?

    (I tangled with this person recently – I moved the horse, on the customer’s request, and got quite the screaming-at, although no cops this time — of course, being me, I thought it was really funny and just wanted to ask him if he was three years old?)

    • Oh my. Reminds me of a barn owner years ago who refused to let someone remove their horse from his barn. He actually came out with a gun– horse owners had to call the cops, big dust up, pretty sure the barn owner was even arrested. A few cogs slipping there, because let’s face it, if someone wants to take their horse, how exactly ARE you going to stop them? “Hello, police? Someone is trying to take their property off my property….”

  7. Fugly, I wasn’t sure how to contact you but since you have also had personal dealings with Randy Byers and know how ridiculously awful he is, would it be possible for you to do another blog post about him?

    He’s been all over ‘western dressage’ the past while and during the summer tried to train and hold clinics here in Canada… Illegally of course! He just got deported but I’m worried that since people around here don’t know the full story about him, they will be conned into fighting for him. I can assure you from my own eyes that he and his training methods haven’t changed a single bit.

    I think you can probably see my email? If not, let me know how I can contact you! (:

    • Yeah, I was told he was in jail. Hey, feel free to discuss here… I was hoping he’d stay in jail!

  8. Well, I’m a little late to this party, didn’t know you had resurrected the blog. I hope you do some guest posts, you are missed, though I love Mugly and think she’s great too.

    OMG I hope you say something about trainers who think they are gods. I just did something stupid and took my green colt to someone (well known) who rode him, mentally abused him, threw him into a total panic attack and meltdown, verbally abused me…yada, yada, yada. I may be the village idiot (yes, he called me that during his rant) but I know you can’t train a horse to do something new when he’s totally panicked. It took me over a week to get his mind restored to it’s former state. I ain’t no BNT but I could ride my horse before, walk, trot, canter, nice transitions, good back up, calmly and willingly. After that ride, I couln’t even get on him. What was it all about? Vertical flexion. Dammit, he’s green, he isn’t ready, and even if he was you fuckin’ jackass, you don’t force it, abuse him, and then claim he’s a dangerous horse and you’re a godamn horsewhisperer.

    Thank you. I feel a little better now, though I could use a forum where i could say the F word a few dozen times a day. My horse seemed like his old self last night and worked like a dream, but I may never get over this.

  9. I’ve never used the Cavallo boots, but I know a lot of endurance people like the Renegades. They’re designed to be used on feet trimmed according to barefoot principles.

  10. Haven’t visited in a while, but It is good to see you are still blogging. Regarding the Cavallo boots – I have 4 pair of them and if they fit too tightly they will cause rub marks. The pastern wraps help a little bit, but the VLC probably has huge feet and cavallo doesn’t make wraps large enough for the big boys. If yours are rubbing you might want to try the next larger size.

    I also have an update/story to share about one of your favorite asshats from 2008, but it is going to have to wait a few weeks until the dust settles.

  11. I have a pair of cavallo boots. They work well on one horse and rub a little on another. So it probably depends on the horse. It does help to use gaiters with them. I just have old mac gaiters for them (since I also have old macs). So try some gaiters. Make sure his he’s super clean and good luck 🙂

  12. Yay! I’m so happy that you are (were? Last post was back in Oct I noticed) blogging on here again. I just popped over after reading what’s going on on FHOTD now partly out of nostalgia and partly hoping that maybe you’d remembered your password . . .

    A friend of mine has a rescue tb mare who’s foundered a couple of times and has thin soles. She was just telling me that she’s saving up to get her some boots that I think she said were semi-custom? I’m not sure about the brand or how the semi-custom works, but maybe if you google around you can find out more?

  13. You can try the Easyboot Glove boots. They are great, no hardware to break and fit quite literally like a glove. They are great and relatively inexpensive compared to most other hoof boots. You do need to measure closely, and I recommend you get the fit kit to get the best possible fit. I do endurance and the highest level endurance horses are competing in the Easyboot Glue-on, which are the Easyboot Gloves but without the gaiter.

  14. I’m really happy that your horse is feeling better. I remember suggesting you to go barefoot in the comments of the fugly blog may be a year back. I probably got not credit for you going that way, but I applaud that you’ve tried and succeeded.
    I’d say if is doing good barefoot, keep him that way. For the boots, I would look into Easyboots, they have a money back guarantee if it does not work out and endurance riders do hundreds of miles in them so they are probably not too bad. Putting (human) cotton socks or tights under the boots generally work to prevent chaffing. I would also look for a Pete Ramey trained trimmer, they are the best. I would be wary of any trimmer taking away sole or frog as this can make your horse footy.
    Good luck 🙂

  15. Cathy, It’s awesome to see you writing about the VLC again. In truth, as an older scaredy rider, I looked forward to these more than fuglyblog. I am happy to see that you are considering stopping WP training with your boy. I too am seeing some improvement in the training of these horses but the way of going is just too hard on any horse’s body and they will not stay sound. Well maybe post legged horses would. I’ve gone on to learn a lot about how horses’ legs and feet work and if they aren’t striding out and landing heel first or at least flat footed, then they are hitting toe first, which pops the DDFT and over time causes navicular. If you watch WP classes, you see lots of dust clouds in front of the toes and that is just not good. A good farrier or natural trimmer who uses boots for rehabilitation for thin soles or other foot pathologies should carry boots in different sizes and be able to properly fit your horse for you. If you are still in the LA area, you shouldn’t have a problem using boots that fit below the coronet band. Easycare and Renegades are the boots of choice for most pros (farriers and endurance riders). They are more pricy than Cavallos but should last you a very very long time.

    I know you have ruled out dressage for the VLC but, if you look at good dressage horses ridden on the buckle, they look just as low and relaxed as him. So if it’s something you think you might enjoy or something he might enjoy mentally, don’t rule it out just because he may not make a name for himself by doing it. In the long run, you should both just be happy- and of course if that is trail trial or competitive trail or ranch sorting or hunter under saddle then so be it. I’m looking forward to the next update! 🙂

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