Friday, October 9, 2015

SUDS contest: bath time shenanigans

I routinely refer to Isabel as 'hydrophobic.' This arab mare is convinced she is a desert Princess, and they don't have water in the desert. Or, if they do, no self-respecting princess would go anywhere near it, thankyouverymuch. (never mind that she was born right here in Maryland...)

poor princess!!
pics from our BN debut at Loch Moy. we made it into the water with no backwards steps, but picked up a refusal moments later at a jump near the water's edge
This makes for interesting experiences at events...... 

first horse trial ever, at OF
Where water obstacles are a standard fixture on cross country courses....  

second horse trial ever, at Jenny Camp 2014 (we were later eliminated when Isabel stopped suddenly at some mud and unceremoniously dumped me....)
So when Erin of The Story So Far Equestrian asked readers to share a funny bath moment / story / picture as part of her SUDS contest, I knew I had to participate. Tho sadly I actually have very few bath time pictures bc wellllll.... Isabel's severe aversion to water makes for decidedly... unpleasant bath times.

she's speeding along the process by digging her own grave
Occasionally things are ok if I can coerce some barn rats to help out by holding/distracting her. But when we're on our own I usually have to resort to tying her - otherwise she dances away as far from the hose as she can get.

saddest drowned rat mare EVAR
And poor, long suffering creature that she is, she'll do just about anything to express her displeasure at getting hosed off. This includes (but is not limited to): literally sitting down, pretending to rear (she thinks she's very impressive!), pawing madly (thus extending bath time by flinging mud all over her freshly cleaned socks), and whirling around like a dervish.

Oooh and let's not forget that time we humiliated ourselves at dressage trainer C's fancy barn TM when C encouraged us to take advantage of her gorgeous wash stalls after a lesson. And Isabel lost her damn mind and pinned herself to the wall and could.not.move. Pretty sure she broke some of the shelves, and naturally shit everywhere for good measure too.... Nice mare, nice.

just grass. no water. only grass. 
Oddly enough, tho - she doesn't seem to mind the scrubbing / shampooing portions of the bath. Cleaning her mane and tail and socks really doesn't bother her in the slightest. But start hosing her off (or even wet sponging) and.... well, if she could cry big fat crocodile tears at you, she totally would. Bc you're KILLING HER OMG.

but so shiny!!!
So honestly I've mostly backed off major baths for the sake of our combined sanity. She can deal with mane / tail / legs? Good 'nuff. The vacuum exists for all the rest.

rolling away the bath time woes
However the idea of shampoo in bar form might actually just be the ticket for this delicate little flower of a mare. ESPECIALLY if it's so super easy to rinse. Erin wrote that the S.U.D.S. bar might be a good product for people living in areas where water conservation is required. Well.... If Isabel had her way, 'water conservation rules' would be in effect in her immediate vicinity at all times so.... I feel like it applies haha.

mare rolls over uphill!!!
Does your horse hate bath times as much as Isabel? Or do you have one of those amazing snuggly creatures that loves pampering of all forms? Or perhaps he's just indifferent?

32 comments:

  1. Ha ha - my guy is the exact opposite. He LOVES his bath, but doesn't want you to go anywhere near his tail.

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    1. so funny ! i would be devastated if izzy was weird about her tail bc it's so luscious and beautiful that i spend loads of time just brushing it out haha

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    2. Hmmmm, well, my guy's tail is average at best, so at least I don't have that heartbreak :)

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    3. haha makes sense. izzy is not very snuggly so i just get my fix where i can - and with her it's fussing over the tail

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  2. OMG. This is better than awesome! The poor delicate flower. I suppose it's a good thing she isn't a grey! lol.

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    1. ha seriously! it's also a good thing that she's not much of a pig pen anyway and doesn't usually get very dirty

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  3. Omg this is so funny! Arab princess.

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    1. and she wants to make sure nobody EVER forgets lol

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  4. Hahaha! I've never had one hate bath time so much! I agree, it's a good thing she isn't grey!

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    1. she really acts like it's the WORST thing that could possibly happen to her

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  5. My red-headed mare prefers hot water, thank you very much. Cold water is just an excuse to dance, crouch and act like a giraffe.

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    1. perhaps isabel would prefer hot water too... i think the wash stalls at TM had warm water but she was already too far gone to notice lol

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  6. Oh goodness, Music was a hoot at first. She'd throw her head up, move away, and give me the nastiest stink eye, but it's gotten better as time has gone on. I'm lumping it in with the head shyness and backing away from an approaching human. She's a sensitive mare.

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    1. these mares, they like to keep us guessing and catering to their every need i guess haha

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  7. Simon & your girl share VERY similar thoughts on water. :)

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    1. they should form a support group lolz

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  8. My Ginger mare hates baths. Not helped by my lack of mercy - I can can usually be found laughing at her while doing my best "I'm meellllttttiiiiing" wicked witch impersonation ;)

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    1. hahaha awww poor Ginger! i always try to remind isabel that she's NOT made of sugar and therefore WON'T melt. she begs to differ ;)

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  9. Gina is totally indifferent to baths, but really likes going into ponds and streams and water obstacles! Moe, on the other hand, LOVES baths! He especially enjoys them in the summer and will always try to face me when I'm hosing him down so I can spray his chest. He'll his head out and up so I can spray his chin and throatlatch. I've caught him standing in the water trough, too. He's ridiculous.

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    1. omg Moe - haha somehow that doesn't surprise me in the least that he's so gung ho about bath time

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  10. That's really interesting that she hates baths and water! Horses are funny sometimes. I bet she wishes she lived in California, where courses wouldn't have many water obstacles because of the drought.

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    1. haha she would LOVE that probably. the less water the better, in her opinion :)

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  11. My boy Knight is a champ with baths. . .I think as an ex-racehorse he is so used to them. The first horse I've owned who has been a pleasure to bathe.

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    1. haha nice! i think it is an ex-racehorse thing - most OTTBs i've known have been either indifferent about baths or REALLY into it haha. very few have put up a big stink

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  12. Have you tried warm water? Courage HATES cold water baths and pretends he's never seen a hose before (despite getting them EVERY DAMN DAY at the race track), but is a-ok with warm water.

    Of course, the barn we're at now is the only barn I've ever been too that has hot water, so this may not be a useful idea.

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    1. unfortunately we don't even have a proper wash stall, let alone hot water. in the past i've tried to leave buckets in direct sunlight while i ride to heat up the water for sponging later... but never noticed much difference. the only time we had access to hot water the mare was already in full melt down mode bc of the wash stall itself (omg rubber mats EAT HORSES! ....except the ones in her stall.... and on the trailer.... and under her water trough in the field. those are fine)

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  13. Mine don't like baths, but tolerate them because ground manners are required with me. We have no water and aren't allowed to bathe though so the most they get nowadays is a small bucket scrub to clean tails or poop spots.

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    1. isabel wishes she could come live with you - any area where bathing isn't allowed sounds good to her!

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  14. Hahahah oh Isabel! That's too funny. Apollo is a bit hydrophobic himself.... he has finally realized (only recently) that I'm going to bathe him whether he likes it or not. Ha!

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    1. haha he sounds much more sensible than isabel.

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  15. Suzie is indifferent to baths. She's pretty indifferent to.... everything. Haha.

    Spud HATES baths. I think it's because he has never been bathed in his life before me, so it's still a learning process.

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    1. hahah awwwww poor Spud - baths are hard for little dudes ;) or at least they're probably pretty quick!

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