No two ways about it, it’s freaking hot. Not just hot, also humid. 95 degrees with 55% humidity is just disgusting. It seems like summer is here to stay now, and we’re all looking a little bit ragged and sluggish. I’m quite certain that I’ve been sweating out at least 5 gallons of water a day… it’s rolling down my back before I’m even done grooming my horse.
With the change in the weather comes the usual change in Henry’s general outlook and temperament that I’ve now come to expect every summer. He’s grumpier, like a 25 year old school horse that has been woken up from a lovely nap to cart an overenthusiastic little kid around. Mare glare is fairly permanent. Not that those things aren’t pretty normal the rest of the year too, but they’re definitely more intense when it’s hot.
There are also a lot of things he Simply Cannot do, including but not limited to:
Trot and poop at the same time. He stopped dead in the middle of trot sets to have himself a nice long poop. Like screeched to a halt and blatantly refused to move until the last turd was expelled.
Contain his drool. He spends his afternoons licking his salt block and drinking water. This is awesome, because he stays super hydrated. But it also means that he oozes out of his mouth like a faucet when I get him out of his stall. Combine the salt and water drool with his cookie drool and he’s a bit gross.
Anything that requires a hint of effort. When I tried to jump him last week he was so quiet I had to ask Bobby to bring me a stick. (Side note: never say that exact phrase to Bobby, he’s very immature. Also he doesn’t know WTF you’re referring to unless you specifically call it a crop.) Leaving all the rails in the cups is optional while jumping, because it’s too hard to clear just a couple more inches of height. And after our lesson I practically had to drag him out of the crossties to put him on the trailer to go home, because 45 minutes of dressage with a whole bunch of walk breaks was obviously too much. Nevermind that as soon as we got home he popped out of the trailer like a whirling dervish because it was DINNER TIME. Drama queen mode, fully engaged.
Keep his shoes on. This one is a problem. How he managed to get through our entire wet/muddy season with his shoes, yet keeps pulling them off now, I don’t understand. Probably has something to do with the whole lack of effort thing, he keeps stepping on himself. He’s lost two shoes in two weeks, the second of which he just trotted right out of during trot sets. And of course, when the farrier came out yesterday to put it back on, he accidentally nail-quicked him. He caught it immediately, pulled the nail, and poulticed the foot, but I’m not sure that he’s going to be sound for the show this weekend. We’ll see how it looks this afternoon. I’m gonna be pretty sad if we have to scratch Henry’s first Training.
Physically, he’s handled the heat pretty well so far. He never gets super hot, he’s sweating great, and he cools down really quickly. He’s fit and looks good. But mentally, he ain’t into this summer thing and he’s not shy about sharing his opinion.
Summer Henry is right, working in this weather is hard. I’ve been running in the mornings before work a few times a week and by the time I get home from the barn in the evenings I’m about ready to pass out asleep. Just a few more weeks (20 days, but who’s counting) until we get to hopefully escape from this misery and go hide out in the mountains. I think we can hang in there until then, albeit very unenthusiastically.
Now I just need his foot to be better today…