Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Sometimes the grass really is greener on the other side...

...in this case, the other side of the Pond.

On Exmoor (and in most of the UK) at the moment we are having very strange weather.  Its been warm since the beginning of March so we've had an early spring but its also been DRY.  Very little rain for the last 2 months - its been measured in mm rather than inches - we've had only a fraction of our normal rainfall and its certainly been dry enough to effectively stop the grass from anything but the slowest, steadiest growth.
The benefits of this to the horses have been enormous - Bailey and Angel, who normally can't be turned out at this time of year for more than a few hours without becoming footy have been out each night and are blisteringly, rock-crunchingly capable.    The grass is still green, and it all looks quite lush but its much, much safer than it usually is at this time of year.

Across the Pond in Texas, the story is completely the opposite - a great post from Andrea on the Eventing-a-Gogo blog went up here over the weekend: http://eventing-a-gogo.blogspot.com/2011/04/jabba-foot.html  I love it because it perfectly describes the tremendously steep learning curve (and even the state of denial!) that most owners in England go through during the first spring that their horses are barefoot.

So all of you Brits who are at the moment complacently congratulating yourselves on how your horse is doing really well on all that grass - just wait till its starts properly raining again.... ;-)

It just goes to prove that its not grass per se which is the problem - its all down to how fast its growing, how high the sugar levels are - and you just can't predict how safe it is by how it looks or by the time of year.   As Andrea says, our horses are our best teachers, and we'd better listen to what their feet are telling us!

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