Hello MHARF! I thought you’d like an update on Gemini (now Buddy). He has been a great horse.
My family adopted Buddy in December 2008 as a companion (or “buddy”) horse for my other horse. I never thought that I would enjoy riding him so much! I was unable to start working with him in the summer of 2009 due to a wrist surgery, but this April, I was determined to get him ready to show in the Isanti County Fair. I had a lady help me by coming to my house for lessons, and we progressed great. I found out that Buddy has great turns and stops.
The fair was his first show with me (and the first time in a trailer and off our property since getting him). We weren’t quite ready; we did games but mostly trotted, and he was quite stubborn about bringing his head down, opening his mouth from the bit, and other small things. However, for his first time away from home, it was a lot of fun. My friend rode my other horse at the fair, and they were stalled by each other (Buddy also has “separation issues”..but getting better!) He was not scared from anything, and if you remember, he is blind in his right eye, but it hasn’t bothered him at all. I also showed him in the Sunday WSCA open show of the fair in the 17 & Under walk/trot games—we got reserve high point! I also put a poster on his stall at the fair about MHARF and many people stopped to read it and comment. They were very interested in his story and his blind eye.
I have taken it quite slow, but I want to make sure I get things right. I am a freshman in college now, so I don’t get to ride as much, but when I come home I ride him and he keeps progressing. I attached some pictures from the fair, and as you can see, he is wearing a tie-down and a cavesson, but doesn’t need either now. He gives his head nicely when I ask and doesn’t open his mouth much. I always have ridden him in a simple eggbutt snaffle with a copper middle piece, which he goes great in.
When I come home from college, I know I can just go and get on him without really any problems. He has never bucked or reared. We are still working on the separation—he always needs to know where my other horse is, so that is the “problem” now (not a bad one). I hope to ride even more next summer, and perhaps try some new riding styles with him for fun (maybe dressage!). I also enjoy riding him bareback. He and my other horse are in a wonderful pasture (about 2 ½ acres?) and they get it all to themselves, along with hay and a bit of grain. He is a lot of fun, and I always get comments on how “cute” he is! Thanks again for a great horse.
– Anna Smegal