Last time Renee was out I decided it was time to get started with Mick and Milo. I wanted to see how she did with complete greenies so that I can turn her loose on her own and not feel like I have to be standing there watching all the time. That theory went down the drain when we saw how well Mick did.
He longed like he’d done it a hundred times before. Not like he’d done it correctly, but like he’d been run in circles for hours on end by some idiot or another. He didn’t understand WHOA or WALK, but he knew perfectly well what a circle was and was content to do a nice steady trot forever.
Which made us wonder… hmmm.. he’s three, he’s been here for about 8 months… maybe he was broke as a two year old? So Renee stopped him and put the saddle on him. He didn’t care at all. He acted like he’d been saddled all his life. He stood perfectly still while she cinched him up, then stood still again while she stood on the mounting block and leaned over him. He was just as good about taking the bridle and barely chewed on the bit at all.
Combine that behavior with the small white spot on top of his withers, indicating an old sore from ill-fitting tack, and we thought for sure he’d been broke already. Renee mounted up, eased into the saddle, and Mick stood there while she adjusted her seat and got her feet in the stirrups. We were all smiles and congratulating ourselves on having yet another broke horse when Mick decided to take a couple of steps.
Once he started moving and felt this weight on his back moving with him, he exploded into a bucking whirlwind and sent Renee into the fence seconds later. Then he tore around the ring like his tail was on fire, almost ran me over, tried crashing through the fence in several spots, and terrified poor Milo who was tied to the outside of the round pen patiently awaiting his turn.
We let him run himself out, then caught him and waited for him to calm down. We walked him around the ring a few times, then back over to the mounting block. We had to end on a good note, and his bucking frenzy was definitely NOT a good note! Renee just stood on the block while I held him, patted the saddle, and leaned on him just a bit. He did fine and was relaxed again, so we untacked him and let him go.
Next time, back to square one! But at least now we know for sure what we’re dealing with. :)