To summarize my ride on Sunny over the weekend I have prepared a series of GIFs for your enjoyment. Can someone please tell me what it is that I am doing so wrong?! No, never mind, it’s not even worth it. I should just probably stop riding in general for the benefit of equines everywhere.

Here, we are “warming up trotting” after lunging and a walking warm-up:


When told to continue trotting after that mini-tantrum, I finally got more effort…just not in the way I wanted:


After being circled for bucking:


He also doesn’t like cantering:


Here is the rarely caught on camera “Sunny stomp” his patented evasion move is to go super behind the bit and stomp/hyperextend with his right front while trotting. It is a little hard to see but it feels really weird:


Is he sore? Broken? An asshole? Totally normal so stop being a baby about it? I don’t really know.

You more advanced riders deal with this stuff like it’s no big deal. How do you fix this behavior? I have just been riding it out and hoping that I am not hurting him or causing any irreparable damage. I come from exclusively riding school masters and well-mannered, good-natured, forgiving horses who rarely to NEVER pull this shit, so it really makes me feel like I shouldn’t be doing this.

I guess I should be pleased that I actually did get more than a few non-fussy walk-trot transitions in a row (an issue Sunny and I have discussed on more than one occasion). But in general, he was braced, hollow, draggy, uncomfortable, and obstinate for the majority of the ride.

At this point, about the only thing that makes me happy about this whole situation is that I’m not paying anything to ride him and it is going to be over soon.

Awww yeah!!!! cue the world’s smallest violin,

playing the world’s saddest song just for me!Ā 




I apologize.

Thanks for listening.

ugh….just go cuddle all those truly good ponies out there and give yourself a nice little pat on the back for not ending up this pathetic.



10 thoughts on “WAAAAAHMBULANCE

  1. First off, the GIFs are very cool. Second, are you confident that your saddle fits properly? Have you changed anything like a new pad or riser? I had a terrible explosion (rearing) with my previous horse several years ago, turns out I bought a breast collar thinking it was going to keep my saddle in the proper place but in actuality it was making his saddle fit worse (found out after having vet out). Also, has anything changed in turnout situation (or lack thereof)?

    • Haha thank you so much for being a voice of reason and calm in my otherwise ridiculous and dramatic world at the moment! I am NOT at all confident that the saddle fits properly. The owner says that it has been properly fitted and that the fitter really liked this saddle for him. (no idea how long ago this was, and his back is just so darn short that it really precludes me from riding in a saddle that fits ME better- so maybe that’s the crux of it) Nothing has changed from his routine but he did go barefoot after repeatedly pulling shoes and stepping on a nail back in June. His hooves look good though, and that doesn’t appear to be the issue. Owner’s suggestion is to crank and spank…and that just isn’t how I ride. Perhaps it should have been more of a red flag to me that no one else at the barn was willing to ride him. It’s just depressing that he was just fine when I first started riding him and now…just supplying me with an endless source of bucking GIFs.

  2. I’ve never seen a horse stomp like that! I can’t tell what kind of contact you’ve got going on, but maybe his teeth need done? I’ve seen horses react very strongly to having a sore mouth. Might be something to look into.

    • The stomp is very bizarre but he’s always done that. The bucking is fairly new though. I hadn’t really thought about teeth- he probably really needs a good once-over from a vet to help rule some stuff out!

  3. I would second getting a better idea of saddle fit. My horse get SUPER grumpy last winter and would cow-kick and not want to move forward because his saddle didn’t fit. Got a new saddle and VOILA! issues fixed.

    There are some fitters who can help via the internet too — Trumbull Mountain comes to mind or you can always post on the COTH forums too.

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