Am I the only one that gets really happy when I mix my horses grain up?  I get this really satisfying feeling when I pour Greyson’s Smartpaks in his bucket every day.  It makes me feel like an excellent horse mom.

Greyson is an ex racehorse so he was worked very hard from a late yearling to about four years old.  Horses are not done growing during this time so most OTTBs have some kind of wear and tear that maybe another breed won’t have so early in life.  For this reason I feed Greyson a joint supplement.  I love Smartpak and choose to get my supplements through them.  I have him on the SmartCombo Senior Ultra Pellets which include a joint, hoof, digestive, and omega supplement.  I also throw in a E-Se-Mag pellet which is suppose to support sore muscles for horses in heavy work.  I am not sure he absolutely needs this one but it doesn’t hurt since we do jump two to three times a week.

As an added bonus for feeding the Smart Combo Greyson is eligible for Colic Care which will cover colic surgery if needed (knock on wood) up to$7500.  Recently I have heard some people knock Smartpak for the requirements of the Colic Care program.  To be eligible you horse has to:

  • be fed the Smart Combo Pellets everyday √
  • get vet administered recommended vaccines √
  • have a dental check up and if needed teeth floating √
  • a yearly health exam √
  • a yearly fecal exam √
  • be on a vet recommended deworming program √

So the people that have been naysaying the Colic Care program are not happy with the program requirements.  I don’t see the big deal personally.  Everything on the list is something that your horse needs anyway right? Maybe not a fecal and health exam but it is inexpensive and can be done along with the vaccines or dental exam visit.  Maybe if you have a big farm with lots of horses and you do your own vaccines then yes maybe this program isn’t right for you because vets do charge much more for vaccines.  But if you have just one or two horses then I think being in the program is great.  Everything on the list above I already did with the exception of a fecal and health exam. Only now I am covered if heaven forbid Greyson needed colic surgery.  You could also buy insurance which would cover colic surgery but if you are already doing this yearly maintenance on your horse then it can’t hurt to have this added protection.

Well that is my two cents.  I made a little video of me preparing and feeding Greyson his lunch hope you enjoy!

If you would like to follow my journey or are interested in what it is like switching to the Hunter/Jumper discipline please subscribe to my blog!

Serious Dreams, Serious Equipment

When I first changed disciplines from “paint horse english” to Hunter/Jumper english I used a school saddle that my trainer had, an old Beval saddle.  I rode in it for about six month and when I started looking for my own horse I decided I needed my own saddle. I would see peoples’ saddles in the tack room every time I would come to ride and it was rows of CWDs and Antares among other high-end brands. Looking up used saddles online I had sticker shock at the prices of these brands. When I rode paints I always rode in a Crosby. The Crosby I did have my mom bought me brand new. It didn’t have knee rolls which was the style back then. It was also 16.5 inches (to small for me now) so I already knew that saddle was not going to cut it. Selling that saddle was hard for me. My mom had sacrificed to buy me that saddle so it was sentimental to me. Looking back I probably should have just kept it as it went for next to nothing on eBay and after fees and shipping I walked away with a laughingly small amount.   Lesson learned.

Crosby Pre De Nations


I decided that I wanted to buy an Antares. Buying new was not an option for me so I started to scour the Internet for a decent used one. I found a 2002 Antares saddle for $1500 and decided to buy it. At his point in time the saddle was 12 years old. I was so excited when it arrived! It turned out to be a very comfortable saddle and it fit me very well. As I started riding more and more the flaps on the saddle started to wear thin. I used it for about one and half years and had to make the decision to replace the flaps or buy a new saddle. My thought process was I couldn’t keep buying a saddle every year. It would be better for me to buy a brand new saddle that will last years instead having to constantly replace it.   Meanwhile I absolutely fell in love with my trainers CWD 2Gs saddle. She let me ride in it and it was like nothing else I have ever sat in. If you ever have a chance to ride in one do it! So now I really want a 2gs. I start looking for a newer used one but my seat size and flap length is a rare combination. I searched for a used one for about 3 months before decided to bite the bullet and order a brand new one. I sold my Antares for $1400; dog sat many dogs and started working off Greyson’s training cost (applying the savings to my saddle fund).

My 2002 Antares, just oiled.


I ordered my saddle and waited the excruciating three months it takes to be made and shipped. A few weeks ago I received it and have ridden in it for two weeks now. It is just now starting to break in. Every time I look at it I get all happy inside. It fits Greyson so well and my leg position has gotten better. It is just another step towards jumping the 1.20m.

How it looked out of the box
Here it is after being conditioned a couple of times.