As spring rolls into summer in Florida, my riding time slows significantly. It’s just TOO hot and the thunderstorms become too frequent and unpredictable, quite often squashing any plans I make to fit in a ride in the morning or the evening.

After spending last summer in the throes of treating anhidrosis in my thoroughbred gelding, I knew I was going to take it easy this summer. This was harder to put into practice than I anticipated though. After the aforementioned non-sweating diagnosis, it took a long time to bring my horse back into proper, healthy form. But finally, we did it. We started taking lessons and going to shows in the fall and into the spring. Mikey, my gelding, is happy, healthy and becoming quite fit. I was bummed to think that we’d have to essentially put all this progress on hold while we got through the terrible summer months.

No sweat, no fun. Read all about Justine’s struggle with her horse’s anhidrosis by clicking here.

But that’s just the way life goes sometimes. And his health, of course, is more important.

To cap off a really great spring season, I entered Mikey in his first ever sleep-away horse show at the beginning of June. It was basically meant to be our big blow out for the spring season before we entered our summer hibernation period.

I didn’t have a lot expectations for Mikey: He’s still quite green and not necessarily consistent. But he’d been so willing in the weeks leading up to the event, that it seemed like a good opportunity to school and show casually at a bigger venue with more serious competitors, if only to log the miles for him.

So I packed up the trailer and off we went for the weekend.

I couldn’t have been more proud of my big green bean Thoroughbred! Mikey took everything in stride: the new, expansive surroundings, the professional quality colorful jumps, schooling in multiple arenas with lots of scary foliage, and being surrounded by a lot more horses at the show grounds. He was even keeled and quiet during his night in the stall at the grounds, and came out ready to work on the day of our classes.

We jumped around a few low-level jumper classes with no plans to be in the ribbons. Mikey had a few exuberant moments, but for the most part, he was a well-behaved baby horse who was happy to get around the course.

We ended the day with me beaming from ear-to-ear, and to our surprise, we even took home a pretty yellow third place ribbon in one of our classes. If there was one way to go out with a bang before we be cooled it for summer, this was it! I’m excited to see where we’ll be once the temperatures drop a bit again…. at the end of September.

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