A Note about Sugarbush Draft Horses

I see it over and over again, and no matter how many times it's said, it's still wrong. "Sugarbush Drafts are just an Appaloosa Draft Cross". Uh.... no. The Sugarbush Draft Horse was a breed created many years ago in Ohio. While the initial cross was made using Percherons to Appaloosas, in the many generations following, the breed has been solidified into a consistent type. Saying these horses are "just" a draft cross makes as much sense as saying that AQHA horses are "just" a Thoroughbred cross, American Cream Drafts are "just" a dilute Belgian, or that Morgans are "just" a grade.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

And we rode like the wind.... except slower

So my dear old Hucky boy has a new bad habit.  Well, he's not mine, and it's not that bad, but it IS new.  When we canter/lope, and I ask him to slow down he's ALL brakes.  I mean, I think we had a slide stop at least once, and a ton of times I got to check out Huck's shoulder.  Ok not that bad, but I can feel the work out in my abs from bracing for it.

Well, we got that all fixed up, and now "Huck" has a new problem.  Except this one isn't his fault!  From all the rides, and all the weird things I have been doing lately, and the cold I've been avoiding, I'm a tired lil girl.  When riding Huck, he informed me that I am crooked (pulled muscle all down my right side of my spine) and hence, he can't figure out how to pick up the right lead canter/lope.  I am SO crooked on him, I can feel it and I can't seem to stretch it out enough to not be crooked.  Huck never faltered... he just gave me a counter canter (wrong lead canter/lope) every single time I asked.

Eesh.  The horse is being wonderful, and I couldn't do a thing to get my body to cooperate with me.

So, I rode Rooster.  Now, Rooster has been pretty good lately.  Like, nothing but totally average (but better trained, and I do NOT get the credit for his fancy moves because I didn't put them on him).  Well, today, Rooster not only met me at the gate, and all but shoved his head into the halter..... he was LAZY for our entire ride!  I mean LAZY.

I kept calling him Huck, he was so lazy.

We had a couple of trucks pass us, some chickens fighting, AND, because I was running out of daylight, I made my assistant trainer (yeah, who is also my mother) ride Lady.  We shared the arena for the last hour and 10 minutes of daylight.  I expected one of the other to object, but nope.... they were wonderful!

Now, to make it an even better day... Lady is seeking out contact with the bit, and she willingly began to round up.  The entire ride, I was working hard to get Rooster into a trot (he just wanted to take a nap, or maybe have some cookies) and I was really enjoying how laid back and mellow he was.  No, it wasn't perfect, but it's a huge change in his outlook on how to act under saddle.  And Lady was just nice and round and working like a champ... except that she wasn't perfect either, she kept wanting to side pass over to meet Rooster.  Mom had some issues with blocking her and keeping her straight, but that's mostly a rider error.  I didn't see a single behind the verticle the whole time!

So, Rooster got ridden with a strange horse, Lady did as well, and Huck was dead on for me.  All in all, these horses are doing great! I have to admit, I have a secret crush on Rooster.  He's just so FUN!  While Lady and Huck are amazing to ride, and really very nice horses, I have always had a soft spot for the problem children.  I think Rooster knows it too.  He can push every one of my buttons... like shoving his head in the halter today.

And now, I have been informed by Jae that I MUST stop working.  Evidently it is not allowed for me to work from 8am until 10pm!  Between the recent interest in the Sugarbush Draft Horse Registry (SDHR) and answering inquiries for those, processing registration applications and transfers, as well as planning my own 2011 breeding season... add in the training horses, my own horses to ride, the young filly that we're halter training, and the holidays.... and my poor man says he is refusing to bring me coffee unless I take a few hours off each night.

*sigh* and to think of all the work I could get done.


  1. I'm baking pies today. Is the new horse still on schedule to ride today?

  2. Cali/Andy is now in Texas, I'm just waiting for them to call and say she's on her way.

    They arrived at home base (Gainesville) and had to offload some and clean the trailer and reload some. Once that's done, she should be headed right over.

  3. I'm baking pies today. Is the new horse still on schedule to ride today?