We had a few days with really nice weather, so Pie, Red, Missy and I got to do some riding outdoors for the first time this year. Pie and I took a walk down across the mare pasture (no mares in there after bring-in) so he could drink from the water tank - he much prefers tank water to bucket water and will often ask to go out and drink from a tank after we're done with our ride.
Missy and I had a lovely ride in the outdoor arena. She'd never been out there before, but was as calm and nice as can be, and we even did a little cantering just for fun - that needs more work but we've got more to do on trot yet. The outdoor is adjacent to the mare pasture and several hundred yards from the barn.
And Red and I rode around a bit in the mare pasture with another boarder (and her very calm horse) - he was a bit nervous. Afterwards, we went back inside and worked a bit more. Then Red decided he was interested in trying outside again - the other boarder was still riding around out there - so out we went again and he was much calmer. Then the next day, Red and I had a great ride in the outdoor arena - I was especially proud of him since he was alone, a long way from the barn and could only see other horses in the distance.
I just got my new ground driving lines - they're wonderful, very long but light and soft. I tried them out with Pie and he did great in the arena. Pie and I may try some ground driving on the trails near to home to see how he does with moving objects like joggers, bicycles, people walking dogs, etc. - our local trails are multiuser and very busy. Red and I may try some ground driving around the big pastures for a start - he's the most reactive of my horses but is also clearly interested in getting out and around. Missy I'll just try out under saddle on the trail as I expect she'll be fine. Dawn and I will stay in the arenas and barn pastures - I'm not chancing her on the trails - she's very reactive and can make huge moves - and she's also not good in company and I don't ride on the trails alone anymore.
Today we had our vet visit for the first round of spring shots, and some other things. All four horses got their Eastern and Western encephalitis plus tetanus, and a separate shot for West Nile. We'll have another visit in several weeks for rabies. The boys got cleaned, and really needed it. Even Red was fairly cooperative and took a bit less sedation than last time. Missy got her microchip - she was fairly nervous for the vet but well-behaved. The vet looked at the cyst in Pie's eye and said that we shouldn't need to do anything right now about it but keep watch on it - it looked stable, wasn't distorting his iris and she could see his whole retina past it. He also has a much smaller cyst on the other eye.
I recently noticed that the shape of the bones in Dawn's face had changed - there was a dent and a small deviation between her right eye and the center of her face. The vet said that she'd in fact likely incurred a hairline fracture there by hitting her head on something, and the slightly misshapen area was calcification from healing. The injury is nowhere near her brain, and she's shown no signs of sinus trouble, so it's not a problem. She never showed any wounds or pain in the area. Dawn's always getting into some sort of trouble . . .
And I asked my vet to estimate Missy's age - we had to have this for the Coggins and I wanted to see where she'd come out. My dentist said 16/17, my vet/chiro said 15/16. My regular vet who came today - who says she's not an expert at aging by teeth - said 12/13. This just goes to show how hard it is to tell a horse's age by its teeth, particularly in the middle years. We'll never know for sure exactly how old she is, so I'm going with 12, and we'll give her a birthday sometime this spring when she'll be 13. I'm happy with that, whether it's accurate or not, and I'm sure Missy could care less (so long as there's food!).