From Endurance to Dressage
I don't know why it surprises me year after year, but my horses have already started shedding. Why do they always seem to pick the weirdest times to start their annual hair loss? Of course I know why they start to shed, but it's always so startling to see hairs all over my coat before the ground hog has even made his ruling.
My boys began losing their first winter hairs a week or two ago. Speedy went first, but Izzy was right behind him. It always worries me a little since it could could still get cold and wet, especially with the winter we've had this year. On the other hand, I rode in a t-shirt the other day, so I don't want them roasting inside their unremovable coats either.
After good rides over the weekend, I gave both boys Monday off and turned it into a grooming day. I dragged out my clippers, some hair products, my thinning comb, and a pair of scissors. I figured if they're going to start looking better, I should probably help out.
While I don't do manes and tails every time I ride, I do keep them relatively free of knots and tangles. I am not a total slouch. It was actually quite relaxing to just focus on detangling and thinning.
I don't thin or trim Speedy's mane of course, but his tail needed a little off the top and bottom. Those bushy hairs at his tail head don't need to be there this time of year. I was happy to see them go.
Izzy's like a pubescent teenaged boy - he has hair sprouting everywhere! And it grows faster than I can keep up with it. I raked off his tail head hairs, banged his tail, and then spent quite a bit of time thinning his unruly mane. I've given up trying to get it to lay to one side. It now officially hangs to the right on the top and to the left at the bottom. Sue me.
Both boys are bow a bit smoother around the edges and look less like ranch horses out on the range. Anyone else going through shedding season yet?
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: