Sharon & Archie, Battisford

Last month I visited a friend at her new yard in Battisford, with her horse Archie.

Previously a flat racer, this chestnut thoroughbred has bags of character, and has certainly set Sharon some challenges over the years. Like many of us, Sharon has experienced some confidence lows, particularly after a nasty fall, and some rather excitable antics on Archie’s part since. They have done a wonderful job of building their relationship from the ground back up again, and it was fantastic to see their bond is stronger than ever.

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Archie is a very loving horse, often whinnying hello as Sharon arrives on the yard, and more often than not he’s very happy to stand for cuddles and scratches. He soon realised what we were up to on the photoshoot, and the ears popped forward, which made my job much easier!

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Having walked down the road to get some shots on a local farm track, we had a heart stopping moment after Archie reared up and caught his lead rope with his leg. In what seemed like ultra slow motion off he went towards home, and very luckily made it in one piece. I hope he’s OK now Sharon and has gotten over his little moment!

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We kept within the yard boundary for the last few images, and caught a little of the sunset which was beautiful to see. Thank you so much for letting me come and catch up with you and your handsome boy Sharon, I hope you love your images!

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Rio’s Recap #4

Hi everyone! You won’t believe the week that I’ve had… Mum’s been having real trouble deciding on what rug to put on me during the day and overnight with all of this muggy raininess, and chilly overnight, and flies, and who knows what else! On Tuesday we were expecting some light showers but for it to be warm enough that my fly rug would do the trick. Luckily she left my fly mask off, as those showers were downpours and I got soaked through.

Mum turned up on Wednesday morning, and I saw her panicking as I shivered my way over to her, rug stuck to me. I tucked into my breakfast and mum set about getting it changed into a 50g, and as soon as she undid the belly flap the water spilled out. I was so cold. Apparently my ears were like ice blocks to touch. Mum had someone check on me a little later as she had to get to work, and I started to warm up a bit. Auntie Millie came and took my 50g rug off mid afternoon but by then I was a bit toasty… My tummy didn’t feel too good.

People say that a cob is easy. Someone forgot to tell me about this, I don’t like to make things boring. If I experience extreme stress, get enclosed in a space I don’t like, eat anything that’s not a natural horse feed (including carrots, apples, parsnips, any horse treats…) then my tummy hurts. If my tummy hurts, I can’t think straight. Luckily mum knows my signs now.

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I don’t think she was too surprised when she got me out of the field that I literally couldn’t help dancing out of the gate. That massive pile of stuff in the corner was definitely chasing me. I don’t think she was too surprised that I jogged down to the school once she tacked me up, and although she was amazed when I stood nicely to let her get on, she certainly wasn’t surprised when after 10 minutes of us riding shallow loops at one end of the school, she had to get off. The wind was gusty, the barn looked terrifying, and there was so much going on there was no way I could concentrate.

I got all snuggled up Wednesday night, and on Thursday had a day off, to try and get everything settled so we could ride out on Sunday on a long hack. My feed had my extra tummy supplements in (L glutamine, black cumin seeds & aloe juice in case you’re interested!) On Friday I was feeling a bit better, and mum turned up after lunch with one of my favourite tummy fixes – my Quick Fix paste! I practically tried to chew the syringe out of her hand. We went out for a nice walk around the block in hand, and I was really brave even when a big construction lorry drove past us on the track, only a foot away.

On Saturday, mum brought my new friend to meet me! Have you met Raspberry yet?

We had a short session in the school, and did a good amount of trotting. I felt much better, and mum even rode me back up to the barn as I wasn’t dancing around everywhere today. Our long ride was on for Sunday after all! We set off with Megan and Mel just after 8.30 and mum kept seeing people she knew, so it was a bit stop and go, and I was a bit sluggish at the start. We ducked and dived the overgrown branches down the byway, and about an hour in Mum snapped a twig off; I decided I better start walking out.

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It was all going really well and I was being really good leading the girls. We got to the canter tracks, and I was quite merrily going along until…

Mum managed to stay up there – although I think she nearly lost it! We carried on once the walkers were out of the way, but when we got to the next bend I decided it was safer to trot it just in case anyone else popped up. Mum laughed and we had a bit more of a canter up the last straight. The ride was good fun, except for the scary motorbike that Buffy didn’t like much, and the walkers, we had a lovely time. I was super happy I got to canter out up front for a change again too!

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When we got home, I had my first bath and got all shiny white. Herbal Essences – thanks very much. Rosehips and jojoba are not my thing. This is what I thought of it all. Boy was it nice to have a good roll in the dirt and the sunshine.

See you next week!

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