Copper the Chameleon, But Not Really

My big, red pony was well behaved last night. More so than he has been our last few rides. Not that he’s been a fire breathing dragon the last few, but he was kind of a jittery mess about being ridden and away from the other ponies. It’s not even so much of a herd bound thing as it is just being nervous about being alone. L rode Paige in the barn with me the other day, and that was a good ride, probably because he wasn’t alone in the barn, but yet he really doesn’t give two poops about Paige being around. Robin is his favorite of the three by a landslide (as well as L’s) but it was windy, and Robin has a tendency to let things like that get to her pea brain. 😉

Robin is offended that I said she has a pea brain. Poor pea brain.

I didn’t work Copper too long last night because he acted like his left hip was sore when I was grooming him. He’d duck out from under the pressure and then prop his left foot. I texted A and told her about his weirdness, and she told me that since it is supposed to rain the rest of the week (rolls eyes), that I should go ahead and ride him lightly. He wasn’t off when I lunged him on a pretty tight circle in the barn, so I decided to go ahead and just ride for 20 minutes or so. She told me to work him in a legit trot first, not his little jog, because that was likely to be more comfortable for him. Of course, he’s been jogging of his own volition for the last 8 months, so it is actually more work to convince him to trot at a reasonable speed, but he was game and we trotted for a while. I stopped posting and just sat his trot for a few strides and let him adjust his speed to where he felt comfortable and we dwindled down to the western pleasure jog again. He’s a freak in that he really likes to jog…which I find weird because I know it (in theory) takes more effort to rate himself and jog than it would to just fling himself around at a quicker speed. So we jogged for a while and I played with side-passing a little. He side-passed to the right better than he ever has (based on what I could feel…I need a mirror or something). He was fussy butt to the left a little, wanting to just back up, so I let him back into the wall, then when he side-passed nicely to the left I patted him big and got off. I did ask him to half pass at the trot once before side-passing before I remembered that his butt was sore. He certainly wasn’t riding as if he were sore, which is good.

Goober moved his head. He had been looking at me all handsome. And when I say me, I mean he was watching scary birds in the background.

Copper is FINALLY gaining the much needed weight. He’d been slowly gaining after having his teeth done a few months ago, but just on hay and grain and not at a rapid pace. I was seeing small changes, but nothing like the weight gain we have going now. Now that the grass has really come on, I tossed him out in the far field that has all the grass, and he is looking so much better. I’ve been spending lots of time grooming him because he is easily the woolly bear of my ponies. Note all the hair on the barn floor in the picture above? Also he left me a bright green present. As usual. So much hair though.

These pictures really don’t do the gain justice. He almost has a grass belly and his topline is filled in! His shoulders and hips have muscled up a lot too, which is nice. Speaking of changes…he’s also doing that Appaloosa thing that he does sometimes. You know, parts of him that have been brown are now white and parts of him that have been white are now brown. He has a tiny white spot on him hip and some roaning by his eye. I’m not thrilled about the roaning on his face. That’s not allowed. He can roan anywhere but his face. Anyway, white hairs turning brown is a new thing for us, we’ve not done that before. I thought it was just a dirty spot the last time I noticed it, but today I looked closer, and sure enough, there is dark skin under the brown hairs.

Just dirt, right?

Nope, it is a spot.

If his socks get spots, that will be awesome. I’d be totally fine with that. I just think it is hilarious that he is still changing colors, though very subtly at eight years old. His half siblings (and one full sibling) changed colors wildly when they were young, but I don’t expect him to. This is his half brother, Oliver, as a yearling in 2007 and currently at 9 years old. Just a couple differences… 😉

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