Lucky is too big for the B.O.’s trailer! We had a loading and tack-fitting clinic today, and I volunteered Lucky for loading. Mostly out of curiosity. I’ve never had occasion to put him on a trailer, only unload him when he arrived (the hauler used a stock trailer, too, so no divider and no ramp.) The B.O.’s trailer is a little two-horse bumper pull, and when I say little . . . I’ve been looking at it parked, and thought that from the outside, there appeared to be no way Lucky would fit.
The trainer (Amanda again) did get him most of the way on. But he was clearly not going to fit comfortably, as in ears brushing the roof. And he is NOT tall. I’m looking forward to trying with the Brenderup when I have the chance (it needs new tires.) It’s much higher, much lighter inside, and the ramp is a lot bigger and gentler sloped. Yeah, yeah, it’s also HEAVY, but it’s not that bad. I can close it alone. However, the B’up needs new tires. Plus, Dad’s car to haul it. Theoretically, my car could. But that does not mean it should. On Monday, trying without the tapping on the butt with the “extra arm” got a foot on the ramp, but Lucky, being a master of Ghandi’s passive-resistance method, simply decided he could stand there longer than I could. A bop on the butt with a riding crop was “Oh, you’re swishing flies for me?” (There WAS one of those stupid B-52-size horse flies buzzing us. I hate those thing.) He even considered falling asleep (“If I close my eyes and droop, the world will go away.”) I think a bit of food bribery (hay or grain in the manger) will get the job done, though, and a bigger trailer with a shallower, longer ramp will be less like asking him to walk into a very small dark hole.
We also had tack-fitting talk. I am in search of a Western saddle for Lucky, and trying to find one that is not too expensive, not too wide, and above all not too heavy (I don’t want a repeat of the eye-bugging “OH MY GOD WHAT ARE YOU PUTTING ON ME” with the Aussie saddle–he took it, but he was clearly stunned by how big and heavy it was) is a long, frustrating process. At least I am reassured a semi-QH bar will fit and I don’t have to search for the elusive narrow-gullet vintage saddle that’s still usable or still in good enough shape to be rebuilt.
Monday, besides trying the loading again, I tied him to the trailer and groomed him there. It occurred to me, looking at show bills for local shows around here, most places are one-day (or I would only be going for one day) and he would need to tie on the trailer to be groomed and tacked. Righty-ho, probably something we ought to practice, as I doubt he’s ever done it, and I never did it with my old horse. The trailer is blocked up in the ring for practicing, I have my own trailer ties with panic releases, sure, why not. I hadn’t counted on the crop-duster! Though Lucky, as always, was unflappable. He’s seen it before, of course, but not while being tied to the annoying box on wheels and pestered by flies (seriously, anyone have foolproof flyspray? Homemade doesn’t even slow them down and they barely are given pause by the alleged kill-on-contact wipe-on.) But it he ignored the VERY low-flying plane and was only mildly annoyed by not being able to reach his head back and bite at the bloodsucking flies.
I cannon wait until it’s cooler, I really can’t. Partially because I don’t take the heat well, partially because the flies need to die.