angry lil bit

 

Have you ever wondered…..
 
We all have our dream horse. Mine was always a chunky, shiny, black horse with a flowing black mane and tail. I follow that closely with a buttermilk buckskin.
 
Do you ever wonder if a horse has a dream rider? Maybe they dream of a woman with light hands, or a man with subtle leg cues? Maybe they dream of a rider that understands the fine art of fitting a saddle or that is savvy enough to know that they hate this dang bit?
 
I (one of the HOP officers) work for a public riding stables and the mare pictured is the one I was assigned to ride. Boy was she a hot mess for the first few weeks I worked there. Manageable, but nervous and antsy, wouldn’t stand still without flopping her head, ran from me when I wanted to catch her. You could tell she wasn’t loving life.
 
I have ridden Lil Bit for 2 years now. She is very far from my dream horse. She is actually kinda not well put together and has funky eyeballs.
lil bit
 
But I think we have become each other’s dream team. You can see in the pictures she has her ears up and just looks a heck of a lot more relaxed under my hands, seat and equipment. She isn’t antsy any more and is no problem to catch. Unless we are standing still in a parade, she doesn’t flop her head and even that is getting better.
 
And folks, I know. She is wearing a Tom Thumb. And horsemen in lots of places consider them an awful bit. But trust me, I tried her in the snaffle, I tried her in a straight, mild shank curb, I tried her in about 8 different, “nicer” bits. But Lil Bit and I are partners, and partners take each other’s feelings into consideration. And she told me herself she was happier in this one so I suck it up. She neck reins and stops like a dream horse now anyways.
Lil bit river
 
(And she has recently changed her address to my farm btw)
 
So ask yourself, do horses ever have a dream rider? Do you think you are it? Do you want to be a passenger or a partner?
 
I hope you are lucky enough to choose the latter. It makes riding a lot more fun!