Say Good-Bye to That Snaffle, Boyo

I have a little trail here at home. It’s just across my driveway and winds through a stand of mixed pine and spruce that was planted in the late 1950s by my Great Aunt (all by hand with a little garden spade). As the trees have grown up, the lower branches died off naturally due to lack of sunlight. So they are rather wicked-looking spikes. I’ve gone through with a pole saw and cleared the trail up to about 12 feet high. But you do have to stay on the trail to stay safe. Crashing through the underbrush would likely take out an eye or two. We try to avoid that.

King is staying in for the day to eat his flake of hay. He finishes that pretty early and then has to stand, sadly starving, for the rest of the day. It’s his diet plan. Sort of combined with his melanoma protection plan of staying out of the afternoon sun. By the time I get around to riding him in mid-afternoon, he thinks he’s going to pass out from hunger. It makes him a tiny bit attitudinal sometimes. Of course I myself get a bit attitudinal when I’m hungry so I feel his pain.

Today I could tell that he was particularly starving. He kept diving for branches and odd weeds. So I took him into the spruce trail where there is absolutely nothing tempting to eat. It winds quite tightly back and forth between the trees, but there is a section of it that is a bit more open and he can usually trot nicely through that. So I let him pick up the trot. It turned into a canter one stride later. And as he wound through the trees he used each lead change to power up. The push off seems to give him some sort of turbo boost. It took about five strides before we were screaming out of control, King snorting happily with every speed boost. He was having a grand time. I was having visions of impalement. “Whoa! WHOA! God DAMN it! KING! Whoa!” He stopped at the end of the stretch where he usually stops. And politely walked down the little hill at the end. “See? I stopped. What’s the problem?”


2 Replies to “Say Good-Bye to That Snaffle, Boyo”

  1. Hey Deanna — have you thought of putting his hay in a net so that he can’t gobble it up so fast? I’ve been using Nibble Nets for years now, and absolutely love them.

    On another note, was talking to a patient today who is a salesman for sporting equipment (he is a hockey player), and he has gotten involved in this amazing new fabric that reduces fatigue, decreases lactic acid buildup, increases circulation, and increases recovery time. I immediately thought of you and King! Its not on the market yet, will be around January, I think. I told him he needs to market to equestrians particularly endurance riders!

    1. Oh, yeah… it’s a good idea. I have actually been thinking about getting one of those slow feeder bag/net things that you use with your guys. In fact, I’ll probably get a few of them and use them for King, Nik, and Twister (when he gets home). I just have to save a bit of money right now… too many vet bills lately! I could probably just use his hay bag from the trailer for now though. It would at least slow him down a little bit.

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