Sunday, 26 September 2010

A visit from PMG

Peter explaining the Half pass for the 300 time even Danni is listening

Well we treated Danni to a course with Peter Madison Greenwell this weekend just across the road at St Piran's Stud - I'm afraid Charles took some stunning photos of the post and rails with occasional horse just glimpsed in the distance but with a bit of surreptitious cropping I think you can nearly see the horse!!

Peter worked with us on the quality of a true contact with the horse working through an actively swinging top line and making use of those pesty transitions to test the point. Danni likes to drop the contact and float along instead of swinging into his bridle but this weekend he felt really secure in his work and balance and came up more in front. Peter was equally insistent at the end of the session when riding him down to a lowered neck that he remain between hand and leg as he relaxed to a long rein. Peter also pointed out the difference if i didn't "load" his shoulder by tipping forward as Danni stretched so the effort was a lowered and stretched neck but still with the shoulders raised.......................I now ache all over!!

You wouldn't believe how much my tummy muscles hurt................and back muscles...............

this one is from day two - I think you can see more collection and elevation

My efforts at half pass can only be described as abysmal - patting the tummy and rubbing the head doesn't com into it............or is it the other way around? Peter eventually manoeuvred Danni and i into the correct position to give me the feel for the correct bend and balance.
But Peter kindly worked Danni each day too, producing some superb work that Danni is capable of, finishing with some working pirouettes and flying changes to drool over and an overall soft swinging carriage to die for.
Danni was nearly asleep before his supper tonight a very tired but happy stallion!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010


Lizzie's filly foal Sophie this evening

Just a quick snap of Lizzie's filly foal this evening tucked under her haynet. She is being such a good foal - as her mother grew weaker she walked so slowly beside her almost becoming the carer herself. It had been agreed with the vet, that to take the foal away would distress Lizzie more and I think she was her solace as she approached her end.

The vet came daily but the most powerful drugs regime that he could prescribe could not help Lizzie. On Saturday when Lizzie s breathing grew worse we called him again although she had already had her two daily injections and after a large dose of intravenous bute (for inflammation) Lizzie was able to make it to her paddock for a last day in the sunshine.
I watched her in the afternoon as we went to collect them -the cluster of foals with Lizzie.... Lizzie no longer eating but advancing a step at a time as the little group moved forwards, watching over her precious foal as she grazed. Lizzie didn't want her super but as I tempted her with a small scoop of mix, she looked from me to the foal and back to me again several times and I think she knew her time had come.

I got up through the night to check her and each time her ears would prick as i crept quietly in to the yard as she stood immobile and resolute, with her foal standing quietly beside. She was silhouetted against the wall, as she has so often stood before, waiting for her foals to be born in the past. By the morning she was finally ravaged by the disease and too weak to go out although she came to the door with her foal as usual.

I waited a little longer than I should have done before going in to cook the guest's breakfast and so I heard her fall or did she at last lay down but opening her door i was able to let the little foal creep out and gently guide her into the next door box. Such a quiet foal, she waited patiently in her little stable beside her mothers. Lizzie didn't see her go and Charles waited with her for the vet to come and she quietly slid to sleep in her own stable.

In all from noticing Lizzie was loosing a little weight and changing her diet, to her her end was less than two weeks.
Lizzie was only thirteen years old and a precious member of our family always organising us from the gate that looked into the garden. To lead Lizzie through a field of horses was for the sea to part in front of you in a majestic progress, as she with her head raised on her beautiful swan neck held effortless court. Lizzie, who would install herself in her stable each evening to wait for her super and Lizzie gathering all of the foals that she doted on. She was very special.
Lizzie in her first winter with us

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Morwen lissie

We lost our wonderful matriarch Lizzie to liver failure this morning after a short but devastating illness. She was a proud horse and struggled to the end but went down at breakfast time this morning. Thanks to our vets at Rosevean veterinary Practice for coming out daily to attend her and for the final inevitable visit this morning. Her foal is quiet having stood with her mother until nearly the end and is well and strong survive. We will miss Lizzie's strong proud nature and gentle ways.