Terry Golson


After the accident in June (which could have been much worse), I’ve been thinking about trailer safety. I keep my trailer in perfect working condition. I have a check list that I follow every time that I hitch up. I’m a careful driver and I make sure that I use my turn […]

Horse Trailer Visibility


While my saddle is being adjusted for Tonka’s more athletic physique, I have been riding bareback (with a pad, which, honestly, doesn’t do much!) Riding bareback has kept Tonka and I at a walk. There’s a lot that can be accomplished at this gait. Dressage is all about fine-tuning communication and developing […]

Schooling Dressage Bareback


While Tonka’s saddle is off getting widened, (he’s put on muscles like the Incredible Hulk, and the saddle was pinching his shoulders) I am borrowing a friend’s bareback pad. Tonka is not thrilled about this. The pad does not have the fleece-covered girth that he is used to. Tonka is […]

Getting On Bareback



Just when the weather gets good, the horse flies come out. There are big nasty ones, but the bane of our existence are the smaller deer flies.   They are golden, buzzing, dive bombers. Attracted to movement and to dark coats, they see Tonka coming and go in for the blood. […]

Deer Flies – The Bane Of Our Existence


I bought my first horse back in 1976. I needed a saddle, and while on vacation in Scotland, purchased one from a local saddler. I used that saddle for a decade, and it seemed to fit every horse that I put it on. But it probably didn’t. Back then, we […]

Saddle Fit


I met Tonka three and a half years ago. He had a kind eye and was adorable. But he didn’t have much of a canter. After a few strides he’d get strung out, too long in front and short behind, and he’d fall back into the trot. This is what […]

Improving the Canter



This is how a horse should get onto a trailer. Blasé.   Easier said than done. A horse has good reason to be wary of getting onto a trailer. Here’s a partial list: The ramp and floor sound hollow. Horses like solid ground. Simply walking on causes it to move slightly. […]

Horse Trailer Loading


I’ve been meaning to write a detailed post about how to train a horse to load into a trailer without the use of force or pressure. I’ve recently been working with a couple of horses who have a history of refusing to load in ways that were dangerous to themselves and […]

Distractions From Blogging


The first evening at the new barn, Tonka did not eat all of his grain. The owners and staff were concerned. I took Tonka’s temperature. It was a healthy 99º F. Other than ignoring his meal, he looked okay. By morning, the grain was gone, his manure piles were normal, […]

Settling In