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Lots of new experiences for my spotty boys this week!In this week's 'Spotties' Spot', Rosie Howard of Galloping Acrobatics talks about introducing her horses to new experiences:

"Both Max and Moritz have had a couple of new experiences this past week. I've taken them out riding and leading together; Moritz has been on a fun ride, and Max has done some vaulting with Helen and I in the local arena!

"When you're doing something with your horse for the first time, it's really important to not go at things all guns blazing with high expectations. Remember that your horse hasn't had the time to mentally prepare like you have!

"For instance, I knew about the fun ride a couple of weeks in advance, I then knew the day was approaching, and packed the car with tack and hitched the trailer up ready that morning. It was a half hour drive away, but still the very first moment Moritz knew we were riding somewhere different wasn't until he came off the trailer, got tacked up and I got on! So compared to him I'd had ages to mentally prepare for a new experience.

"The same goes for vaulting on Max. He didn't know that's what was happening until it was happening, whereas Helen and I had been planning it for over 24 hours!

"With their riding and leading I'd been thinking about it for ages, but they obviously had no idea! I've led them both from Tinker and Casper in the past, but that was two years ago and they'd not been out together before. It was a bit spur of the moment but I think they enjoyed themselves!

"Horses live very much in the here and now, and they sometimes need more support than we expect. But when you look at it from their point of view you can see how wonderfully accepting of us and generous with themselves they are. Take a step back, take a deep breath, and thank them for it. They are wonderful!"

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We would have been performing at Chepstow Show today, but instead are looking forward to the 2021 show. We were there way back in 2015, although this is the only photo I can find from the day - Tinker and Casper were obviously keen!We've got our first performance at Chepstow Show in just over an hour. The boys are both raring to go... ...

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Say ahh! Rolo and Sprout had their annual visit from the dentist today. Both had some filing done and are all tip top for another year! ...

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My turn for a vault on marvellous Max today! I did lots in walk and trot so for only his second session (his first with just me) he was incredible! ...

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