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Sunday, 15 February 2015

Louie's First Party

If you've been reading our recent posts, you'll know that we've been taking Louie out most weekends to lots of different arena for lots of lessons. But the one thing that you don't get from lessons is working in different places while in amongst lots of other horses. Plus, I wanted Louie to meet the white dressage boards ready for when we really do want to compete.

The downside of four lovely white socks - cleaning them the night before! But with the help of a couple of products, we were done in about 30 minutes, & with overnight bandages, I hoped they would stay that way until the morning. Louie was plaited, and used his new Shires Stretch Hood with full face to help keep them in and himself clean!

I wasn't sure what to expect from Louie - whether to be dragged all over, whether he'd be overwhelmed, or whether he would get very excited and I'd be in for an interesting ride! I needn't have worried on any count - he excelled in the way he behaved. Yes, he was keen to have a look around, and he was bouncey in the warm up, but he took everything in his stride...

Times were running ahead, and the organisers of Todburn Equestrian Centre very kindly let me go in ahead of my time, and use the time to show Louie the white boards. After walking around once each way, he was settled, albeit a little tense, but not spooking. Excellent. We started our test.

He went lovely, even if a little tense, but very obedient and did everything that was asked. The main thing was he was forward all the way. Shame I forgot the test & went the wrong way!

I decided to leave Louie in the warm up after the test to really get used to standing and being in amongst everything that was going on. But due to some no-shows, I was offered a place in the next test in ten minutes time.

Louie was tired, but it was in a different arena and another chance to go around, so we did. He put in a nice test, but much flatter than previously.

Taking Louie back to the wagon to untack and give him a wash down, I thought it would do him good to stand on the wagon for a little bit of time. We've always headed off straight after lessons, so it's good practice really. He stood happily munching his haylage while we grabbed a hot drink.

I went to collect my test sheets, and was amazed to find that not only were our scores very pleasing, that Louie had also brought home a 5th place in his first class and 3rd in his second! I was over the moon with Louie - his first party and two ribbons!!

It was a great morning out, and Louie enjoyed a well deserved roll in the field when he got home. We'll look forward to telling you all about the party we go to!

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