New pony arrived yesterday. I know I'm expecting a lot after one day but he is sooooo grumpy :-( He won't let anyone go near him in the field - ears straight back, turns his back and trots off. Caught him with a bucket this morning and led him to the house for a groom - he was so strong on the leadrein I couldn't let my daughter lead him. He wasn't bad tied up and when being groomed he seemed to relax slightly. Took him back to his field, he was strong (I had to wrap the leadrein round his nose) but we did a couple of halts and waits and then walking off and he wasn't too bad. I don't like the idea of ignoring him in his field for a few days (as others have suggested) as I think he should start getting used to what we will do immediately - we have a pretty consistent routine.
I feel really sorry for dd2 because her old pony was so friendly in the field and easy to do. He was very nappy when ridden though and difficult in the school so I guess you can't have it all.
Just a bit worried that this pony might never settle and always be grumpy :-( and when do you think we should attempt riding him??
Needastongone - how long is he getting turned out for and what is your grass like? I'd suggest that he's working pretty hard - especially if 5 times a week - and we'd probably give ours a scoop of something like Calm and Condition mixed with some chaff just to keep his weight on and give him some oomph (presume he is jumping etc.)
Our shetland has hay all summer. She is in a bare paddock during the day (with coarse hay) and if she is full of hay then she eats less grass when she goes back on the field at night, therefore less sugar! Perhaps this is what your neighbour meant? Hay instead of grass rather than as well as, hay being the less fattening option when the grass is in full growth as ours is now.
I don't mind feeding him the balancer. We've only had him a week or so so it is hard to gauge what kind of doer he is. Our old NF had literally nothing except grass and always looked amazing, but that is what his old owner did. This pony has been stuffed with treats (they gave us 10 x packets of polos to take with us ) and fed lots of mollichaff which I think is sugary rubbish personally, plus lots of other bits and pieces. He was stabled at night.
He has to live out 24/7 with us and I like simple feeding systems. Half a cup of balancer and a handful of hi fi lite is probably much less than he's used to.
yes I'd feed more than that needastrongone, for energy more than anything although fitness helps. In the summer I plan to add some nuts to his feed if he needs it as he will be ridden 5 or 6 days per week plus camp. Keeping a beady eye on that weightape though!
He's has actually filled out since we have had him (about a month now), he's out all the time and just on the grass in the field. Grass I guess would be in full growth but looks sparse to me, the untrained eye