Bridgit

description: 2011 brown & white Paint mare
type of rescue: Owner Surrender
intake date:12/12/12
adoption date: 5/19/17
length of time with SAFE: 4 years 5 months

ADOPTED!!

Bridgit came to SAFE as a filly, surrendered to SAFE along with another pinto filly named Jewel. Bridgit has always has the sweetest disposition and just adores people. She was quick to learn basic skills, like leading, trailer loading, standing for the farrier, bathing, and clipping. Bridgit completed 60 days of professional training, and returned to SAFE going well at all three gaits. She spent a long time as a SAFE horse, partly because of some intermittent lameness issues that were difficult to diagnose. She did become a solid riding horse and a favorite of our volunteer riders. Bridgit was adopted in 2017 and became a three generation horse, enjoyed by grandma, mom, and kids. She is beloved in her adoptive home.

A Visit with Bridgit

A Visit with Bridgit

Here are some beautiful photos of Bridgit and her adopter Kristina. Bridgit and her little buddy Oreo are best friends, enjoying a wonderful life together with their family! Thank you, as always, Jessica Farren for sharing your amazing talents with the SAFE horses and alumni.

 

For updates on many of your favorite adopted SAFE horses, visit our SAFE Alumni Facebook group! It’s where SAFE adopters can post updates, photos, and videos of their SAFE horses, to share their progress with the SAFE community!

SAFE Alumni Update: Bridgit

Bridgit’s adopter shared these lovely photos of her girl, as well as one of her good friend Oreo the pony! Photos by Jessica Farren.

 

For updates on many of your favorite adopted SAFE horses, visit our SAFE Alumni Facebook group! It’s where SAFE adopters can post updates, photos, and videos of their SAFE horses, to share their progress with the SAFE community!

Bridgit finds a home!

All the horses that pass through the gates of Safe Harbor are special and placing them into wonderful new homes is the best part of our work. SAFE is happy to announce that Bridgit’s new family has been found and she is adopted! Bridgit’s sweet and gentle disposition was exactly what Kristina and her family needed. The family was looking for what we call a “unicorn,”  one that is good for the whole family to be around and ride. It is very hard to find a rescue horse that can meet the needs of 3 generations of riders: grandma, daughter and granddaughter but Bridgit is just that exceptional! Everyone she meets is an instant friend and she doesn’t have a mean bone in her body. With her soft big doe eyes and youthful energy radiating innocence and joy, this mare is very unique.

Kristina has been out on the trails enjoying Bridgit and she is doing great going out alone or with her new companion Oreo. The little pony gelding and Bridgit are great compadres. The reports and photos of Bridgit we’ve received during her trial period have been delightful. This extra special mare has found an exceptional family to love her and take care of her for the rest of her life!

Another Perspective on Bridgit

Here is a letter from Ian about his time getting to know Bridgit and working with her in the Joel Conner clinic. Ian is a wonderful horseman and a absolute joy to have volunteering at SAFE. I am very happy that he enjoys working with this very sweet mare!

Hi Terry,
I really want to thank you for getting the two of us to be ‘friends.’ Every session with her is a great experience, and the clinic was no exception. I had some initial nervousness — this was my first (ever!) clinic participation, and I had only a quick chance to “rehearse” some groundwork with Bridgit on the Thursday prior. Like many of the horses, she knew something exciting was going on, and had a good bit of energy in her stall when I groomed her. However, it occurred to me that she’s done more of these than I have, and I could learn a lot from her about it.
 
Leading her to the arena she shied away from the new floral planters at the entrance, which she had also done during the Thursday session when they were newly placed. Thursday, it was a full on spook — the only time she’s ever done that with me. At the clinic it was just a wary look, and a little more energy than was necessary coming through the arena entrance. I knew she needed me to take charge before she would calm down. I took her to into the arena to a space where we could work for a bit. After warming up with yielding the forequarters, backing, and circling at a walk first, then the trot, she was willing to settle into a lazy walk with some lip smacking. At that time, I stretched her by flexing to the halter, and then practiced some desensitizing with the rope. This got the first yawn out of her, and we were ready to get started.
 
Joel began the clinic by circling some more, which Bridgit now had a good groove for. She can still pull to the outside if her inquisitive mind passes anything interesting, but she evened her circle and loosened up her back, starting her trot with a head low to the ground and her back rounding and getting longer. I could see the mounted work she’s done with Lindsay lately has had a great impact on her natural sense of collection, and I was happy to see her relax further. The “back up then yield the fore end” exercise showed us both where to improve. Bridgit remembers that yielding the shoulder is different from going forward or back, and within the 20 odd minutes of practicing, both shoulders were soft enough to yield with no more commotion than simply raising my hand near her eye. I got to remember the importance of good body position when asking for a front quarters yield.
 
During the leading along the wall exercise, Joel noticed me being heavier than necessary to cue our backups, driving from the front with the lead rope. When he lead Bridgit, he used so much less energy cuing and much more of an energy of anticipation or gusto. Bridgit liked it a lot. She yawned after that moment, and after Joel got me to “lighten up,” she moved with me so much more willingly. Not only that, but she relaxed even further and yawned several times during the final practice of that exercise. At the end, we all gathered our horses around to listen to Joel’s wrap‐up, and Bridgit yawned THE WHOLE TIME. Every time I looked at her, she was yawning. She had clearly let got of a lot of tension during the clinic, she even moved like a different horse. Also, I’ll be using the backup/front quarters exercise with all other horses.
 
Bridgit is so incredibly smart, she picks up on everything so quickly. This does mean that she spends a bit of time challenging me in the beginning of any session, looking for reassurance of leadership. Once I get her feet yielding and moving she can be so sweet and placid that little will phase her. All the same, she meets everything I do with so much try — I really think there’s no end to her potential. She is such a wonderful horse! The thing that gets me the most, is that she really enjoys her time with her humans and can be downright affectionate when she’s relaxed like that.
 
Let me know if you have any questions. She really is a joy to work with!
 
Ian LeFae

Bridgit: Riding update Joel Conner Clinic

This little mare is looking GOOD!! Our volunteer riders have been working on getting Bridgit strengthened up and she is looking sound and soft. We really have to commend their dedication to the work. Sometimes it isn’t a very glamorous process… lots of boring trot poles and strengthening exercises. Butthey have chipped away at it and the work is paying off. Every time Joel sees this little mare, he remarks at how pretty and well behaved she is for the volunteers. She is ready to have her own family and become someone’s riding partner. She has already been a star on the trails at our new home in Redmond. She and her rider have even been allowed to walk out on the path alone (where we can see her from our property!) and she did great! No problem walking away from the other horses or coming back in a panic. Just a perfect little sweetheart as always! This is her time, let’s get Bridgit adopted!!

Here is an update from Melinda who is riding Bridgit three times a week and took her into the Joel Conner clinic a few weeks ago:

I rode Bridgit for the first time in the Saturday afternoon session of this weekend’s Joel Conner clinic. What a fun little mare she is! I truly can’t believe she hasn’t been adopted yet. She is such a sweet horse, and she has a lot of try in her. She’s been ridden consistently lately and has also been in previous clinics, so I knew going into it that she would already have a good grasp on the basics. She was initially a little “sticky” when moving her hindquarters to the left and also needed a brief refresher on the soft feel in the beginning of the clinic, but by the end of the afternoon she was putting it all together well.

I’m really excited about Bridgit’s future. She has blossomed into a beautiful young lady in the time that I’ve known her here at SAFE, and I’m excited to get to be a part of that growth. She’s going to make a really great partner for her adopter.

Training Update: Bridgit

Here is what volunteer rider Erika had to say about working with Bridgit this week:

Bridgit: She was in the top turnout area above the arena while I worked Cam. And was pretending to be a bucking bronco almost the whole time. I thought it would be a “fun” or “exciting” ride, and it was. But only because Bridgit was a ROCK STAR!! Seriously. We worked exclusively in the round pen today, with no trot poles. Rode her in the K&S instead of the black synthetic. Going one direction, we went from Walk‐Trot‐Lope‐Trot‐Walk‐Halt‐Reverse with NO REINS. Yep, you read that correctly. We tried the other direction and we got all the way up and down, but didn’t quite get to a halt. I *THINK* we were going right when we went through everything, and then left was when we didn’t get to halt. At any rate, this may have been the best ride we’ve ever had, and I told her she was SUCH a good girl! Super proud of how far she’s come!”

Great work Erika and Bridgit!!

Joel Conner Clinic Report: Rosie & Bridgit

SAFE’s volunteer riders and their horses spent last weekend working with Joel Conner. Tess worked with Rosie, our new intake, in the morning groundwork sessions and with Bridgit in the afternoon riding workshop. Tess writes about the clinic and shows a ton of good insight to these two horses and her experience with them. Thank you Tess for your volunteer work with SAFE and for sharing how special these horses are! You’re putting great work into helping find them homes! Here is what Tess has to say about her sessions with Rosie & Bridgit:

Rosie:

Rosie, Tess and Joel

Rosie, Tess and Joel

When I was paired up with Rosie for groundwork I was very excited to get to work with one of the newer horses. I thought Rosie would be a total breeze to work with, but I was proved wrong within the first 20 minutes of the first session. After 22 years of bad training and being allowed to walk all over her handler she needs lots of retraining. Her tendency was to try to crowd me and brace against me. When trying to bend her head head around she would create a brace and try to back up. After going around in circles backwards for a while she finally got it and was then very soft whenever I asked her to bend. It was to same story with backing. By the second day I really felt a change in her. She wasn’t crowding me as much and was much softer when I asked her to bend or back up. She’s very willing to learn and almost enjoys it when someone tells her to stop doing something and make a better choice. She had a hard time standing still initially (would start weaving and tossing her head or head butting me), but whenever I bumped her to say “stop that, keep your focus on me,” she would immediately start licking and chewing and even occasionally yawning. I’m very excited to see Rosie continue to learn and grow into the amazing horse she has the potential to be!

Bridget:

Bridgit and Tess

Bridgit and Tess

Bridget was a total rock star for the clinic! I have been working with her for a few months now and and was very excited to be able to ride her in the clinic. She’s done several other clinics with Joel so she’s a total pro at these, but this was my first clinic with Joel and my first clinic ever! I was a little worried about her being able to do everything due to her stifle weakness which we have been working to strengthen, but she didn’t have a single issue. I think I probably learned and grew more than she did. Bridget is such a great horse to learn on. She’s very forgiving and can take a joke. She’s also the kind of horse where you have to ask her to do something properly in order for her to do it properly, but even when I didn’t ask something properly she would still try to figure out what I was asking and wouldn’t get upset or frustrated. The only time I ran into any trouble was on the second day when she was obviously tired (I was tired too) and was somewhat reluctant to move off my leg. After she got it once though I didn’t have any trouble again. By the end of the clinic I felt that we had both really grown as a pair. She was even softer than she was at the beginning of the clinic, and she was already very soft, and she was much more prompt to respond to my aids. I’m so excited for her to become stronger and stronger so we can continue to grow! She is such a joy to work with and be around. She is constantly making me laugh, I have never met a horse with such a sweet and fun personality.

More photos from the clinic:

Bridgit & Gracie Get Massages

Brigit and Gracie were treated last week to massages from Lara Lutz of Island Equine Massage. Lara is a long time SAFE supporter, adopted mom to Amber & Louie, and a member of SAFE’s Board of Directors. She is also now a licensed equine massage practitioner. Lara has offered to come help give some much needed TLC and bodywork to a few of our horses. Here are a few things she had to say about meeting Bridgit and Gracie:

Bridgit — This was my first interaction with Bridgit. She is a personable girl and will play with the zipper on your coat pocket and nicker to you for treats. I really enjoyed working on her — she especially loved when I worked on her hind end, and it was rewarding to watch her lower her head and sway her body in relaxation. 

Gracie — Today was my first time working with Gracie. She has a kind eye and is a sweet mare. Much of our session focused on helping her poll and neck areas. The copious amounts of yawning and licking and chewing showed just how much she enjoyed and benefited from our time together. 

Video: Bridgit Ground Work

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Health Update: Bridgit

We are currently working to strengthen Bridgit’s hindquarters. We had Dr. McCracken come out and evaluate her and help us understand why she has such a sway in her trot from her hind legs. It is a little of “the needle in the haystack” for an answer so at the moment to help we are going to do a few things to make her stronger and rule out weakness as part of the problem.

To start we are walking her over poles and up and down low incline hills. Then as we progress we will add trot and trotting polls. As we can, we’ll begin to add slightly steeper hills and possible take her on walks up the hills here on the Hollywood Hills trails. This is a gradual increase of work and we will be working up to the full load over the next two months.

So far Bridgit has been doing well for her rehab work out and learning to pick up her hooves over the poles. She remains a very sweet mare and enjoys her time with the volunteers. Her future as a riding horse remains uncertain but we hope to have some answers from the work we are doing with her now.

Wrap up from Joel Conner Clinic Dec. 12–13, 2015

Great group of Volunteer Riders!

Great group of Volunteer Riders!

We had a great time hosting Joel again at Safe Harbor. The horses and volunteers had an amazing weekend and everyone progressed in their feel and training. Here are a few accounts from the volunteer participants about what they learned about the horses they were working with during the clinic:

Jolene D:Khianna- At the time of the clinic Khianna had a total of 4 or 5 rides on her since her return from foster. She was nervous, but did so well! She tries so hard. She is coming along nicely and I believe will develop into an incredible partner for someone.

Sara E: Jewel — Jewel was an all‐star for the clinic, Claire has done such a great job with her. She felt flawless going from hind‐end to front‐end turns. I learned so much while riding her during the clinic. She is going to make someone a really great horse.

Sara E: Khianna — Did ground work with Khianna and at the beginning she was a nervous trotting mess, but Joel came over and helped me get her front feet moving and she calmed right down. She is so loving and tries so hard. Once she figures out you aren’t going to eat her, she just wants to please you and be loved on, I don’t know if I have ever worked with a horse that tries to give you 150% all the time.

Lisa G: Ben- I can’t say enough about how the horsemanship that Joel has helped bring to SAFE amazes me. I had Ben in all 4 sessions, GW and riding, and I was honestly just hoping I could get him to stay focused on me with all of the excitement, maybe get some nice serpentines down in the riding portion, and work on soft feel and stopping/moving forward off of the seat. Well.…. He did all of those things and SO MUCH MORE. Every exercise that Joel moved the participants through, beginning to advanced, Ben tried. And SUCCEEDED, at least on some level. I am so impressed with the effort this big guy puts into everything; as long as he understands that there are no consequences if he doesn’t understand, and he knows that I will wait for him to figure it out, I believe this horse would be willing to try anything under the sun. In the few days since the clinic, Ben had maintained a quiet, willing attitude, with TONS of deep, relaxed sighs, even during the riding work. SO proud of the progress he has made and so grateful that this work was brought to the SAFE horses.

Sara S: Khianna- I worked with Khianna for the first time doing GW on Saturday morning, and was so impressed by her “try”. She does get a little nervous about the rope and flag coming at her while moving (though not at all while standing still in the comfort of the “herd” (me)). I particularly enjoyed the backing exercises, and she was so in tune with my feet and body language it felt like we were dancing partners! She is such a sweet girl.

Sara S: Phoenix- I did GW and rode Phoenix on Saturday afternoon. He hadn’t been ridden in weeks, and it was raining on the tin roof, so he was extra “special” to start, but after just a bit of GW he calmed down and started paying attention to me. Riding, he was great. He’s getting very good at backing circles, front and hind yields (he’s so bendy!). Over the few months I’ve been working with Phoenix, I’ve noticed he tries very hard to anticipate what I want (if he’s in the mood), but as soon as I push too hard and/or he doesn’t understand what I’m asking, he shuts down. On Saturday, I didn’t feel him shut down at all which is probably a combination of both of us getting better at this!

And many thanks again to Joel and Terry for putting on such an inspiring clinic!!! I wish I could come out to SAFE every day, but I’m glad to be even a small part of this great community and cherish this opportunity!

Claire C: Mesquite- It was my first official time working with Mesquite, and I think we made some really good changes. He is super sensitive so it was interesting to experiment with him and see how much pressure he needed. I only did the groundwork session with him and it was fun learning to time up with his feet better.

Claire C: Phoenix- For the afternoon session, I rode Phoenix, who I have not done a whole lot with either. He was also good; we worked a lot on more forward motion and keeping him focused on what I was asking. We did lots of bending and yielding, which was so good for him. Overall, he did very well.

Casey A: Stella- I worked with Stella, who is turning out to be a great little horse. We worked on slowing down and developing balance on both the ground and under saddle. We were both so much lighter by the end of Sunday, and I know we got a big change in our partnership. She was so relaxed through the entire clinic, even when horses around her were nervous. She’s also pretty resilient and forgiving of my mistakes. She has taught me so much, and she is going to make someone really lucky!

Erika S: Maggie- I worked with Maggie for all 4 sessions, and she did fantastic! She’s such a smart, willing mare, and we connected early on. One idea that I heard this weekend was that eventually it will feel like your horse is reading your mind… Well, I’m here to tell you that that’s the truth! Maggie remained tuned in for everything we learned about, and worked in sync with me. It honestly helped me more than I think it helped her!

Ann A: Bridgit- Bridgit is a friendly girl and likes getting attention. She is a bit on the lazy side and I had some trouble getting the life up in her while doing circling exercises. She just wanted to come into the center and hang out with me. She made good progress under saddle in the afternoon sessions. She was learning how to pick up a soft feel at the walk by the end of the first day and we had some nice walk/trot transitions. She needs more work backing straight and in a circle both on the ground and under saddle. She also needs more work reaching with her front foot and disengaging her hindquarters under saddle. She felt much more balanced to me than she did when I rode her last summer.

Jane M: Oscar- As a relative novice to practicing Joel’s horsemanship skills, the greatest lesson I took away from GW and riding Oscar during this most recent Joel clinic is the impact GW has on riding. Yielding hindquarters, circling to achieve bend and balance, it all makes such a difference when aboard the horse. I’m able to apply lessons learned under Joel’s guidance to my regular riding lessons. It’s quite remarkable to me, and I look forward to Joel’s next visit and my next “aha” takeaway!

Playful Brigdit!

When can we play with Bridgit again?

We have been patiently waiting to start working with Bridgit again….She “popped a splint” on her left front a few weeks ago and we have been waiting for the heat and swelling to go down. Meanwhile the little munchkin has been enjoying long turnouts next to her buddy Phoenix. They could be caught grooming each other every day for long periods of time. She has been very well behaved and taking it easy. I was looking back through some photos and found these from earlier this summer. She is such a doll and as she fills out is going to make a great riding companion. Here are some of the pictures I found:

Dental Day at Safe Harbor

annabelle_07_15_2015Yesterday was a marathon day of dental care for the horses at Safe Harbor Stables. Dr McCracken of Rainland Equine did seven floats and some lameness consultations along with them. Here’s a rundown of how each of the horses did:

Annabelle was not terrific about getting injections for her sedation, but considering it’s probably been several years since she’s seen a dentist, her teeth were in reasonably good shape. Some sharp points but nothing significant.

Jewel was a pill for her shots, but her teeth were in great shape. Dr M said that based on her teeth, Jewel is well into her 4th year and could be closer to 5! (For the record, we’re going to leave her at four!). Nothing too conclusive about her thickened left front knee. Dr McCracken said Jewel could have had soft tissue damage at some point and has some arthritis in that knee. It’s unlikely that it’s a bone chip since those generally happen more in the knees with TB race horses, but we might x‐ray at some point to take a look.

Oscar's eye examinationOscar did considerably better for his shots, and his teeth looked good, but he does have some extra large spacing between some of his teeth on one side, which means that food can get trapped there and cause decay. She cleaned it out and said if he is good for us we can help by squirting water into his mouth to help flush his gums and remove anything that gets stuck in there. Dr McCracken also flushed his left eye to see why it is always tearing. There was no clog in his tear duct. She also examined his eye using a little stain to reveal ulcers and scratches, but everything looked normal.

Bridgit was an angel for her shots! Her teeth looked good too. But here’s another surprise: Dr M puts her age closer to 3 years old!! She is still losing baby teeth! Bridgit popped a splint a week or so ago and Dr M advised us to give her another 3–4 weeks off until there is no heat in the area. No that means that Bridgit won’t be at the SAFE Horse Show this year. In fact she may end up going back to foster along with Sophie, which would be awful for her because she’ll have nothing to go all day but graze, snooze, and play in a huge pasture. Poor Bridgit!

Lola we knew would be bad for her sedation, so we did an IM sedation to start and let that soak in, then came back to start the dental. She was still too awake so did have to give her more drugs this time IV and still not great for it. But her teeth were in good shape which made the procedure quick and painless. We will need to work on Lola’s aversion to seeing the veterinarian. She can be very difficult to handle when she sees them coming. Fear based issues can be hard to overcome but it is important we help her through just like any other training issue. Lola has her strong opinion and self preservation and while we love her for it, it’s what makes her our endearing “sass‐apolussa mare”, we need to help her stay safe and understand vets are there to help her feel better.

Khianna was good for her shots, but her teeth showed more sharp points than you’d expect to see considering she was floated in January. Dr M suggested that we plan to have her teeth looked at and possibly floated again in 9 months.

Inside Finn's MouthFinn also handled his shots like a pro, giving Dr M the chance to do an in‐depth evaluation of his jaw, which has had some unusual swelling for about the past month. The swelling has gone down some and she thinks it will just take more time. His teeth are very, very weird with the right top long, right bottom short, left top short and missing some and left bottom extremely long. She took a lot off the tall areas and it took a little work but she did get to a point where there was some contact now on both sides. It is a slow process to correct his teeth and he will continue with the 4–6 month dentals for a few more times. Dr M can only take so much off at a time and keep the tooth alive. He is a very sweet boy even with his funny teeth.

 

Our darling Bridgit!

bridgit_05_19_2015The nickering QUEEN! There is not a lot about this cute little mare’s personality that won’t make you fall absolutely head over heels in LOVE with her! She is the type of girl that when you come up to her stall or her turnout paddock, she will come RUNNING to greet you. She LOVES to work and while riding will actually NICKER when you praise her and pet her on the neck. Bottom line: Bridgit is a LOVE!

We have spent the last few months working to improve her balance and help her gain more awareness of her body. She needs to learn how to support and balance herself first and then the weight of a rider. She is still young and seems to be in one of those “all leg and no idea where they are underneath her” phase of her life. Hopefully she will be moving quickly through these “awkward teen” growth years but only time will tell what her abilities will be as a riding horse. We have had moments where she is able to find balance but the tripping and uncoordinated steps make her currently too unsteady for a beginner rider.

Our training plan is to help support through challenging her to focus and have more body awareness. We are using groundwork, obstacle work with ground polls and other exercises to help make her “think.” We’ve also got her in light riding with a couple of our volunteer riders who can balance her while keeping themselves balanced and safe when she trips. She is probably one of the SWEETEST horses I have ever met! We have hopes that she will continue to progress as a riding horse and we can find her a loving forever home. She is currently available for adoption but would only make a good match for a intermediate well‐balanced light‐framed rider who is willing to take her on as a prospect since her long term rideability is still in question. She gets along with many different types of horses and has great ground manners and no vices.

Bridgit training update from Kim Lacy

From trainer Kim Lacy: “Bridgit is doing well. She’s very sensible, she just has a lot of energy. Now that we are doing more “work” she is better focused. The biggest issue with her right now is she is pretty weak in her hind end and over her back and she does get sore easily. So I have to be careful. She also trips a lot and has a bit of a hard time balancing a rider. I keep her rides short and sweet but I need to balance her riding with strengthening but not so she gets too sore. It’s a little challenging.”

Bridgit is growing up!

bridget_8_20_2014We checked in recently with SAFE horse Bridgit to see how she is progressing in her preparation for training as a saddle horse. Bridgit has been in a foster home for the past year to give her a little time to grow and mature. Her foster mom had some wonderful things to say about this beautiful little mare…

Bridgit has been with me for over a year now. In that time, she has grown a couple of inches and finally filled out from her ribby state. She has also matured emotionally and behaviorally and is a pleasure to work with. She still has moments of insecurity, where she looks to her person or her herdmate for comfort. This can include crowding into your space, which is something we continually work on. She does get anxious when her herdmate leaves.

Bridgit has been lunged lightly in a surcingle and recently wore a saddle for the first time. It was a non‐event! She is carrying a bit as well, and looks very grown up wearing her big girl tack. She is doing very well with voice commands on the lunge in both directions.

Bridgit bathes, clips, stands for the farrier and she loads and trailers well. Recently she went on a field trip around the neighborhood in‐hand. She crossed a wooden bridge, walked on pavement (with neighborhood cars causing no concerns). She encountered many suspicious looking mailboxes, which she was willing to investigate when asked. She was a little excited about the herd of neighbor ponies that came running over to say “HI!” but she settled quickly.

Bridgit is a sweet youngster who is nearly ready to get started under saddle. She will never be a big horse, but should be able to carry a petite rider just fine. Her future looks very bright!

Bridgit was *not* on Santa’s Naughty List

GrownUpClothesShe was a very good girl this year, so Santa brought a special gift for Bridgit…GrownUpClothes! She got her very own Pony size surcingle. Here she is modelling her Big Girl outfit. Isn’t she adorable? (the angle of the photo is exaggerating her current slightly butt‐high build). Bridgit continues to learn and grow. She now straight ties and cross ties with confidence. She stands (mostly) quietly for the farrier. She is good about grooming, bathing, and clipping. She also loads herself in the trailer! She has a super cute little trot and we look forward to seeing her start her career as a riding horse, possibly sometime in 2014.

Checking in With Bridgit

Charming Bridgit!

Charming Bridgit!

Bridgit is an endearing youngster, her occasional moments of baby brain are quickly forgiven when she looks at you with her innocent charm. She spent the summer in the company of my older boss mare, learning how to be a respectful member of a herd. She was a very quick learner, and the two girls are now pretty well bonded.

I have been working with Bridgit on learning the basics she will need to be a good equine partner. She is always willing to approach you to be haltered, even in a large pasture situation. She loves to interact with people!  She halters easily, leads and backs. Occasionally, when baby brain takes over, she rears while being led.  We are working on remembering to keep all four feet on the ground at all times.

First Bath

First Bath

Bridgit politely picks up all four feet for cleaning, though she is a little uncertain that she can actually hold her own self up…we are working on balancing and not leaning.  When she first arrived, she was highly skeptical of grooming tools. In particular, the sound of the mane brush through her tangled mane would startle her.  Now, she is a pro at full groomings and recently we even introduced clippers.  She tolerated the muzzle clipping with only a little coaxing, and while I got the clippers in the vicinity of the bridle path we didn’t quite get it clipped. Next time!

 Bridgit has mastered being straight tied, and we will work on cross‐ties next. For the first time, she stood tied for her farrier appointment…she did great! She recently had her first full bath and took it very well. She handles new situations well with an approach‐and‐retreat confidence building strategy. And cookies, plenty of cookies!

Standing politely

Standing politely

 Bridgit’s personality is an interesting mixture of lack of confidence combined with an overwhelming sense of curiosity.  This makes for some interesting interactions…what is it? what is it? I really want to put my nose it…OMG it moved!! Aaaahhh!  Her expressions really convey her internal dialogue. The great thing is, her curiosity always wins out over her fear. Once she gains more confidence through exposure I think she will be an awesome partner.

Bridgit Update

Bridgit with her new friend Summer

Bridgit with her new friend Summer

Bridgit has moved to a new foster home with SAFE President Debi Shatos in Snohomish where she shares space with Debi’s mare, Summer. Bridgit is a confident youngster, but she has wisely decided that Summer is the boss mare and she needs to be respectful. With that established, the two girls are getting along quite well.

Bridgit Update!

Bridgit has made great progress with her foster mom, Jackie. She is nearing healthy weight and her coat looks so much better than in December. She is calm, curious and very friendly. She immediately comes right up to you in a big pasture looking for loves and scratches. She gets along well with other horses, but exhibits a little dominance when she chooses to. She currently stands a little butt high, so we hope that she has more growing to do.

Lots of photos from a recent visit to her foster home for worming and a checkup! Isn’t she a cutie?! Thank you so much to Jackie for taking such wonderful care of her!!

Shenanigans!

Bridgit left NWESC for her new foster home on Wednesday, where she made the acquaintance of our good friend Moonshine. The two youngsters hit it off right away!

Meeting Moonshine

Meeting Moonshine

But Jackie awoke the next morning to find Miss Bridgit had had a little too much fun the night before!

Shenanigans!

Shenanigans!

Three pinto ponies on the move!

Jewel is looking better!

Jewel is looking better!

Our three recent intakes, River, Jewel, and Bridgit, have spent the past six weeks at NWESC regaining their health and their weight. They are all going to be moving on to their next accommodations and starting their new lives.

Jewel has already left NWESC for a foster home where she will get a lot of handling and attention. She’s been the problem child of the bunch, and so she needs to learn manners and accepting human handling before she can be turned out to start growing up. She’s filled out nicely and is being a good girl for grooming and currying!

Bridgit will be joining our Moonshine at his foster home where the two young horses can run and play and just grow up. She’ll be moved on Wednesday of this week, so we should have another update on her as well as some photos then.

River had some complications after his gelding procedure, so he’s had to spend some time recovering. He had a little more bleeding than normal after his surgery and developed a hematoma as a result of that bleeding. He’s all healed up now, and we are just waiting for Dr Hannah to give him the green light to move on to his next challenge: training!! River is the next SAFE horse who will be started under saddle by Andrea up at Half Trak. He’ll have a couple weeks of learning on the ground before anyone attempts to get on his back. River has been a very good boy for his handlers at NWESC, so we have high hopes that he will do well in training too!

Three new intakes at SAFE

SAFE has three new horses to introduce. All three are in emaciated condition with severe parasite loads, lice, poor coats, overgrown hooves, and facial indentations from halters that were too small for them. They are currently under the care of Dr Hannah Mueller at Cedarbrook Vet Care, and will remain there until their conditions are stabilized.

River is a young black & white paint stallion who will be gelded as soon as Dr. Mueller has dealt with his parasite overload. He is a delightful young man who has already made many friends among his rescuers! He is in the best condition of the three, and looks to be sound, despite the terrible condition of his hooves. Click here to visit River’s page.

Bridgit is a yearling bay & white pinto filly who is also very sweet, friendly and loving, despite her condition. She was hard to photograph because she kept moving toward the camera, asking for attention. She is surprisingly gentle and respectful for a filly from a neglect situation which we hope bodes well for her in the future. Click here to visit Bridgit’s page.

Jewel is a yearling palomino & white pinto filly who is undoubtedly going to be stunning once she’s rehabilitated. Right now, she looks pretty scruffy, due to her neglect, and according to the vet techs who are currently handling her, she’s a bit of a pill. Jewel has what appears to be a slight clubfoot, although Dr.  Mueller is hopeful that it’s just an angular issue that can be corrected with proper trimming. Click here to visit Jewel’s page.

We will continue to update you on the progress of these three new horses, but for now they are all responding well to treatment, and enjoying being cared for and fed by people who care about them.

 

Bridgit Intake Photos