Bob Day

Bob models his new saddle

Kim decreed this morning that today was Bob Day. And indeed it was! We grabbed some sandwiches from the store on the way to the barn and away we went.

Abiding Acres is a very pastoral place, as I have commented before. So, we just had a mini-picnic on the wicker chairs outside the barn. We were entertained by the chicken flock and the nameless duck. Then it was time to track down Bob. We only had to play Guess If I Am Your Bay Horse once this time.

Bob was in the southwest field with the herd, happy as could be. We stood and watched him for awhile to see how he was doing with the herd. He was grazing next to Jamocha, a paint gelding that is in the stall next to his. He was doing just fine. Apparently he finally had some words with the bullies!

We weren’t sure how he would be to catch and halter, as we had never had to do that with him actually getting along with his herdmates, so we hatched up our plan and I prepared for a horse that didn’t want to be caught.

There was no need. Bob saw us and ambled right over to us. What a good boy…. There was no drama with the rest of the herd, either. Kim haltered him and then led him back to the barn, where she groomed him. I stupid-vised and offered (mostly) useful bits of occasional advice.

Mostly though, I watched Bob. He had a nice bite from sometime in the last few days that was healing nicely, but otherwise was doing well. He continues to gain weight. You can still see ribs, but they are slowly getting filled in, I think. I will weight tape him tomorrow. The real test of herd behavior came when Sunny and Beau came over to the gate by the cross-ties. A week ago, Bob would have been very anxious to have them behind him. Today? No problem!

I put Bob’s new saddle on him and spent a few minutes fussing with the pads. I don’t have any shims to make fine adjustments yet, but I was able to move the pads around a little to get a halfway-decent fit. I hadn’t been sure about the color, but the black saddle looks good on him!

Kim did some groundwork with Bob and we called it a day. A pleasant one, too.

About Mike

Michael Heggen is a horseman, maker, and thinker who lives in Salem, Oregon with his wife, Kim, and "three to eight cats". He stays quite busy riding, driving, and caring for their three horses, Boulder, Shasta, and Bob. Among other things, Mike has been a fencing coach, police chaplain, computer consultant, aspirant to the diaconate, computer salesman, box boy, carpenter, computer technician, typesetter, church youth leader, copy machine operator, and network administrator. His other interests include juggling, reading voraciously, and (pretty occasionally these days) cycling.
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