Pogo has been officially purchased by Clara (well, by her parents, but for her :) ) 
Last night I was sent some videos of the both of them in a lesson together. I am attempting to figure out how to attach the videos from my computer to here without youtube, we'll see if I can eventually get them up...
Until then, a big CONGRATS!!!

 
 
Yesterday we decided that Pogo would leave for his trial period today. So, early this am, I rushed to the barn got him all clean and ready, found his blankets, gathered feed, wrote down some "instructions" (my pogo how-to manual, haha), got all of the paperwork together and loaded him up. The anticipation was honestly killing me seeing where he was going to live....we drove past many cute barns and many dives...that I would describe in my famous saying " I would only board my horse there if I was too poor to pay for euthanisia and couldn't bear to put a bullet in 'em" ...crass I know but those are the only words I can find to describe what some people call "barns" around here....but I digress.....

As we got closer, literally having a panic attack, ( should I have gone? would it have been better not knowing? ) we see some white tape fencing and see the house number and realize this is it...behind the house I see a very quaint, cute barn, and suddenly feel SO relieved! We pulled into the driveway to be greeted by Jen and her two very enormous and ADORABLE mastiff's, and see two small grass pastures, one empty and awaiting Pogo, the other with a cute mare and 4 mini donkeys. It was like a little pony paradise. We unloaded Pogo, and I wasn't sure what to expect, I wasn't there to unload after he long haul from Finger Lakes to Tammy's barn.....He was a gentleman while I fumbled my way through the trailer, turned himself around and like he's been doing so his entire life (which perhaps he has) hopped right off the trailer, looked around, and honestly looked like he was home. He seemed extremely comfortable as he grazed on the nice grass that he hasn't seen in a very long time....



Going back a day in time, I realized it could be my last chance to get a good "after" photo....Here are his conformation shots from beginning to end....

Picture
Day 1 at AU, 1/9/12
Picture
after some baths and beauty treatment 1/27/12
Picture
Our Final Shot...thanks Tesla Parker for the awesome photo....taken 4/9/12
 
 
As some of you have heard, Pogo had an exciting freejumping day this past weekend. Clearly, he is still figuring out his feet, but nothing a few gymnastics and more time jumping can't compensate for. This horses work ethic is incredible, and his will to be a "good boy" is unbelievable. 

The first jump effort is 3'6" or 3'9", the last two are 4' (according to the measurements on the standards). He jumped the 4' height over and over again on his own, with me standing in the middle dumbfounded about 7 or 8 times, knocking it the last time I think because he was just a little tired. I put it back down to 2'6" to end after that, afraid his confidence might be a tad broken.....only I was wrong and I wish I was taping because instead of being afraid of it, he cantered right up to it and cleared the standards (take that 4' vertical, I'll show you!!)  He is such a comic!!

 
 
Today we had a cute little girl come out to try Pogo. I was very excited as it sounded very promising and like an appropriate situation for the horse and the rider. The girl was looking for a horse she could "grow with" and Pogo is just that kind of horse. Although he is only 4, he is awfully forgiving and never holds a grudge. Should you "mess up" he takes it in stride, may or may not react (And if there is a reaction it's not too bad) and then moves along to the next thing. Just as an example, the girl got a little thrown out of the tack when jumping, but on her next approach, there was nothing different, no anticipation of "something bad" or "something different" he just gave her the best he had. 

It took a little bit of the girl figuring him out and also for Pogo to figure her out as well. I think they both adapted well, and there was a vast improvement from start to finish. We ended with a nice hack around the property so she could get a feel for him on the trail, which I think they both really enjoyed. 

They decided to take him on trial for a week, and will be leaving for that in the near future, I am keeping my fingers crossed that all works out well for the two of them. They are very cute pair and I do think that this girl will be able to teach Pogo a lot and grow with him, and Pogo can teach her a lot as well. Until then, he will keep up in my program and I will keep everyone updated. I wish I cold have 
 
 
Pogo has learned a lot this weekend. It is so easy to forget that he is only four and has only been undersaddle since mid January, as he approaches every work session like he's been doing this all of his life and acts so grown up in many many ways....

Saturday I decided to set a little course and just evaluate what sunk in from the previous weeks course jumping. I had thought about doing gymnastics then a course, but I thought differently (mainly due to lack of a ground crew for height adjustment) but also because he is at the point where he needs to make the mistakes to correct them, not "fix" anything before it happens, I am not sure he learns that way, yet. 

Anyway, I started by just cantering single fences, which he did effortlessly...we did about 3 or 4 warm up single fences and then right on down the line I had set. Perfectly pin straight, perfect striding, no hesitation or question. He totally had this under control. I turned to the diagonal as we had a great, rolling, unchanging pace, met the next small fence and continued on. We wound up doing a small course of 5 or so fences just like that, including a large, square oxer (that we found the proper distance to...personal pat on the back for me for not riding like a fool!!!!) I walked, (out of breath cuz I am still sick) and was astonished. He rode around the "course" better than any horse I had ridden in a long, long time. That's not an exaggeration, considering I've been only riding greenies basically since the summer! I let him have a break, did another course, which he got a little rolling on, but easily came back. I think at this point, the indoor is hard for him as the turns get a little too tight for the size of stride he would like to have, I think until he gets a little more of the appropriate muscle, this will continue to be hard, either the turning or keeping our stride smaller. Anyway, we did some trot fences to get the butt engaged, cantered a handful more fences to keep the pace smaller and called it a day.......for now.

I also got an offer from another boarder to ride her amazingly made TB hunter...I offered her a swap, more riders on Pogo the better. She hacked him around great, and even jumped a handful of fences on him. The coolest part about Pogo is he is the same horse, no matter who gets on him. To go from a very very trained and talented hunter to Pogo, who is an aspiring, not as well trained hunter, was different for her but Pogo was forgiving for the short, long, and appropriate spot she reached each time...

Onto today, we decided to work with some more canter poles and raised trot cavalletti. It soon became clear that Pogo's rateability needed work at the canter, the more he got rolling the harder it was to bring him back to that slow and springy canter he starts with. So, we did some work with that and allowing for me to help him find the distance to the pole instead of getting there on a hope and a prayer it's correct everytime (usually, it is, lucky for him, but he needs to understand what a rider wants if the situation arises and not panic when a correction is made) so I pick a poor track and make him wait or make him go long, so I can make those corrections and see what happens. 

By then end of the session he was coming back and moving on when asked and in a calm and quiet manner. We did the same at the trot and incorporated more raised cavalletti....alas, another ah-ha moment for Pogo....honestly you can feel him think and feel him understand and get the point of whatever you're asking. Once you have that feeling, it's solid and he knows it...