Would have been the day to take pictures, but I needed both hands. We headed out early at the vet's where Rufus is staying. The farrier had agreed to come by and put shoes on him then, as he'd run out of time earlier in the week. Rufus has been sore-footed on the gravel lately, and Saturday when we stopped to check on him he was a bit camped out in front. Sure enough, the farrier found a tiny abscess blowing up from a stone bruise.
Other than that, he complimented Rufus on having very good feet. With the abscess pressure relieved and a shoe on, Rufus was a whole new horse. (Somehow, I don't think it's fair that T's turn at the foot-soaking penicillin routine comes in the nice weather, though - Sunny's nail incident was January and the warmest it got was 5' that whole two weeks!)
With Rufus shod, we hooked up the trailer and collected Sunny. Then it was back to the vet's to sort calves off cows. We saddled for that, and Sunny was a trooper. I was interested to see his reaction, as he's been pastured with cows but I've never actually chased anything with him.
He caught on quick - no idea if he'd actually be cowy, but he was definitely all for making them run away, and tracked after stragglers with every indication of interest and enjoyment.
After we finished working cows we loaded up and headed down to ride along the James River a bit east.
Did I mention the wind was blowing around 35 mph (sustained) with gusts into the 45-50 mph range? No need to worry about no-see-ums today! The wind actually wasn't a problem, but Sunny's lack of withers was.
Grrrr... I really thought I had the saddle thing nailed finally, as he's been working comfortably in this saddle/pad combination all summer. But we haven't tackled any really big descents, and the first long downhill with any kind of slope to it, it was really apparent that he wasn't comfortable. The saddle doesn't slide forward badly, but it moves enough to bind under his front legs, and I can't cinch any tighter. I think there's going to be a crupper in his future....
So I did a bit more walking than I planned, but at least I got my exercise for the day. The other three careened up and down the draws and generally had a good time. We skirted the edges and Sunny got a lesson in being lone horse. Not that he cared much. He was pretty sure he knew where the trailer was, and didn't really mind the rest being out of sight. We did get a couple of nice loping stretches in, and determined that Sunny can stretch out and trot as fast or faster than the QHs with us could lope.
Truly funny? Buddy, the vet's big QH must stand 16.2 - I used a height/weight tape on him last time we wormed Rufus, but on dirt, so it's only ballpark.
Sunny's all of 15-15.2 on a tall day.
So loading them in the trailer two by two, and Sunny's in next to Buddy, who's a good 4-6 inches taller, and a good two feet longer. Sunny looked like he shrunk in the wash - either that, or Buddy had a Mini-Me, as they're both bright red chestnuts.